Mesothelioma is a quite rare disease. In the USA 2,000 to 3,000 cases are registered each, but this amount is increasing. Usually mesothelioma is assigned at the age of 50 – 70 years old. The disease is much more common for men than for women (3-5 times greater). African Americans are less influenced by this disease than white Americans.
Frequency: Internationally mesothelioma is diagnosed in 0.9 cases per 100,000 patients.
Mortality/Morbidity: 11 months is the median survival for patients with malignant mesothelioma. In most of the cases it is fatal. The survival that is based on histological type is 12.5 months for epithelial, 9.4 months for sarcomatous, and 11 months for mixed.
As it was said earlier asbestos exposure is the cause of at least 50% malignant mesothelioma cases. Until now approximately 8 million people in the USA have been exposed to asbestos either in the workplace or at home by asbestos dust embedded in the worker’s clothing.
Race: There are no evidences of a racial predilection of mesothelioma. So we can say that race is not a factor
Sex: Malignant mesothelioma is less common in women. A female-to-male ratio is 1:3. Mesothelioma was also found in children; but these cases are not associated with asbestos exposure.
Age: Usually malignant mesothelioma is diagnosed 35-45 years after asbestos exposure. The mediate age of diagnostics is the fifth to seventh decade of life.
World Facts about Mesothelioma and Asbestos:
– Over the next 30 years deaths are expected to increase at least 1 million.
– The usage of the asbestos in the developing world is exactly the same as in the USA until 1980.
– The asbestos-related mortality has its peak at 7,500 in 1991, so the death toll in the USA will far outnumber the deaths caused by mesothelioma.
– It is ease to prevent these deaths by using a face mask, the price of which is just hundred rupees or a few dollars.
– The usage of asbestos in the USA dropped from a peak of 800,000 metric tons in 1973 to 21,000 tons in 1996. It happened only after many large legal battles.
– 171,500 workers in the United States have died of asbestos related cancers in the past 30 years, so asbestos related cancers can be called the worst occupational health disaster of the century.
– The epidemic will wind down in 2025 but about 119,000 U.S additional deaths are expected before.
– It cost $50 billion over the past 20 years to remove asbestos out of all public places. It is not founded because once installed the risk of exposure is minimum. Only a worker installing it has a risk being exposed to asbestos.
– USA spends $3 million a year on removing asbestos from U.S. buildings despite this minimal risk.
– The cost of each life saved by removal of asbestos is $100 million to $500 million.