Mesothelioma is a potentially aggressive type of cancer that can be fatal. Thanks to extensive marketing campaigns by major law firms across the country, many Americans believe that asbestos exposure is the only way one can contract mesothelioma. This is not the case, however.
According to the American Cancer Society, it is important to think about cancer in terms of risk factors. While asbestos exposure is one risk factor for developing mesothelioma, several other risk factors also exist.
It is not uncommon for doctors to use radiation to treat certain forms of cancer. If a person has undergone radiation therapy, he or she might have an increased probability of developing subsequent mesothelioma. This is true even if the individual never had extensive exposure to asbestos.
Zeolites in soil
Asbestos is a naturally occurring substance that is similar to other naturally occurring substances, like zeolites. If an individual works with the soil, he or she might breathe in zeolites and eventually develop mesothelioma. Consequently, it may be necessary to investigate whether a person with mesothelioma ever had exposure to dust or soil with zeolites.
Some scientists believe that certain viruses can lead to the development of mesothelioma. While researchers think mesothelioma may stem from the simian virus 40, other viruses also might contribute to the disease. Taking a deep dive into a patient’s medical history may help identify whether viral factors are responsible for mesothelioma.
Ultimately, if a company is facing a mesothelioma lawsuit, it might be beneficial to investigate whether the plaintiff might have acquired mesothelioma from something other than asbestos exposure.