October 14, 2010

Asbestos Exposure Symptoms, Causes , Risk & Treatment

Posted in Category : General Health

Asbestos can be described as a naturally occurring mineral that has been used in building material for decades. While there may certain uses of this natural mineral, there are also many serious health hazards that have been associated with exposure to asbestos. Therefore, the use of asbestos has now decreased considerably. Direct and excessive contact with the mineral could lead to a severe asbestos lung disease known as asbestosis or even lung cancer in a person. Therefore, any contact with asbestos should be kept to the minimum or preferably avoided completely. It is possible to tell if a person has had too much contact with this harmful mineral, if asbestos exposure symptoms are evident.


In most people, the asbestos exposure symptoms only become evident after a period of 15 to 20 years. There have also been cases where the symptoms have surfaced after a period of 40 years. Some of the most common asbestos exposure symptoms include:

  • Anemia
  • Breathing difficulties like shortness in breath or the presence of a dry and crackling sound while drawing in breath
  • Constant pain in the chest area
  • Excessive phlegm
  • Lack of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Persistent and chronic cough
  • Pulmonary hypertension
  • Severe and unexplained weight loss
  • Sudden high fever
  • Swallowing difficulty
  • Swelling in the neck or face area

The signs and symptoms mentioned above are mainly an indication of over exposure to asbestos. Although asbestos exposure symptoms should not be ignored, they do not necessarily indicate the presence of an asbestos lung disease. In case any of these symptoms are present in a person, it is important to consult a doctor immediately, to diagnose the problem and begin with the appropriate asbestos treatment options.


Unfortunately, there is no cure for asbestosis as yet; however, early detection of asbestos exposure can help contain the diseases that are caused by it. There are a few vaccines and medicines, used by doctors, to control asbestos exposure symptoms. In case the person suffering from asbestos related diseases is also asthmatic, then medication should be prescribed, to control the asthma first. Antibiotics may also be used for the treatment of lung infections. In case of cancer caused by asbestos exposure, regular cancer treatment can be used to help control the condition.

People who are aware that they have been exposed to asbestos at some time of the other should get themselves checked frequently, to diagnose any problems and undergo treatment, as early as possible.