Mesothelioma: What Are The Symptoms?

Because of the long delay between asbestos exposure and cancer growth, individuals often overlook initial symptoms of mesothelioma. In addition, these symptoms can mimic those of less serious illnesses, leading to further delay in seeking treatment. Therefore, it is vital for anyone who suspects past asbestos exposure to seek medical screening for the disease, even if symptoms are not currently present. When symptoms do arise, even if trivial, it is important to contact a physician immediately, as doing so may be the difference between succumbing to the disease quickly and maintaining a high quality of life while fighting this illness.

Early symptoms of the mesothelioma cancer mirror those of other diseases or physical issues such as congestive heart failure, emphysema, weight gain or constipation. Symptoms may include shortness of breath, constant chest pain or cough, night sweats, weight loss but fluid gain, bowel obstruction, swelling of the feet, and a buildup of fluid on a chest x-ray. This buildup is known as a pleural effusion.

Pleural effusion is a main symptom of mesothelioma. It is a buildup of the fluid between the parietal pleura and the visceral pleura. These membranes are coated with mesothelial cells that normally secrete a fluid that lubricates and protects the space between one's chest wall and lungs. In a healthy person, excess fluid is absorbed into the blood and the lymph nodes. In a person with mesothelioma, there is too much fluid present and a pleural effusion occurs.

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Pleural Mesothelioma Symptoms

This is the most common form of the disease, making up about 75% of all cases. It develops in the lungs. The symptoms are:

  • Pleural effusions (typically containing blood)
  • Inexplicable shortness of breath (dyspnea)
  • Persistent chest or rib area pain, painful breathing
  • Persistent dry cough without phlegm
  • Inexplicable weight loss
  • Blood in the sputum (fluid) or coughing up blood (hemoptysis)
  • Difficulty swallowing (dysphagia)
  • Fatigue
  • Development of lumps under the skin on the chest

Peritoneal Mesothelioma Symptoms

This is the second most common form of the disease. It develops in the tissue surrounding the abdominal cavity, known as the peritoneum. The symptoms include:

  • Fluid buildup between the peritoneum and the abdominal organs (ascites)
  • Inexplicable weight loss
  • Abdominal pain or swelling in the abdomen
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Sweating or fever
  • Anemia
  • Fatigue
  • Diarrhea, constipation or any other inexplicable changes in the bowels
  • Development of lumps under the skin on the abdomen

Pericardial Mesothelioma Symptoms

Seen in less than 5% of cases is Pericardial Mesothelioma, which is present in the membrane surrounding the heart. Symptoms include:

  • Heart palpitations
  • Chest pain
  • Inexplicable difficulty breathing (dyspnea)
  • Sweating or fever
  • Fatigue

Do Not Wait To Contact Us. Do Not Go Another Day Without Compensation.

Early diagnosis gives the patient the best chance for survival. Early communication with a lawyer can help you get the compensation you deserve as soon as possible. Call us at 888-324-7261 or send us an email to schedule your free initial consultation with an attorney.