What is mesothelioma?

Mesothelioma is a rare cancer which starts in the mesothelium (the lining of the lungs, abdomen or heart).

What causes mesothelioma?

Mesothelioma is almost always caused by exposure to asbestos. However, there can be a long gap of time between the exposure and development of the disease.

How many people are diagnosed with mesothelioma each year?

According to the American Cancer Society, between 2300 and 3000 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma each year.

What is the prognosis for someone diagnosed with mesothelioma?

Each person is unique and there are several types of mesothelioma, so only a person’s own physician can give a personal prognosis with their own treatment regimine. However, the median survival is between fifteen and seventeen months. For additional information, the American Cancer Society has a publication called A Detailed Guide to Malignant Mesothelioma which includes survival statistics for mesothelioma, available here.

Why is Mesothelioma Awareness Day important?

There is still much to learn about this cancer. There are several exciting trials and experiments on the horizon that will hopefully lead to advances in the treatment and improvement in survival of this disease.