Nowadays, there are many diseases and illnesses caused by unhealthy life style. These diseases can also be developed to constant exposure to dangerous substance or chemical. One of the most dangerous diseases is the asbestos lung cancer.
When people hear about lung cancer, most of them think about cancer suffered by smokers. It's not always true, actually. Those who are often exposed to it, are usually workers in mines, mills, factories, or home workers who usually deal with installing, carrying, or removing it. Some workers who are exposed to high concentration of asbestos are workers in automotive repair, boiler making, pipe fitting, construction, or even people who work in laundry to clean clothes containing clothing.
It is a kind of fibrous family of silica compound. It forms fibers and there are 3 types of it: white asbestos (the chrysolite), brown asbestos (the amosite), and blue asbestos (the crocidolite). All three are dangerous and can cause lung disease related to cancer or non-cancer illness. Its effect is not direct, though. It takes about 20 years of exposure to make it resulted in cancer. During the 20 years people might not feel anything. There are 3 types of lung disease related exposure to asbestos:
- Asbestosis: the scarring of the lung process which means the lungs are hurt
- Pleura or the lining of the lung. This is caused by inflammation and the lining tissue will be thicken or hardened, and it happens on the outer part of the lungs.
- Lung cancer. It's caused from within the lungs or the pleura.
When the disease develops into lung cancer, there are two types of lung cancer: the small cell one (SCLC – small cell) and non small small (NSCLC – non small cell). The SCLS means that the cells are round and small, while the NSCLC means that the cells are bigger. When the cancer has the characteristics of both, it's called the mixed small / large cell cancer. The cancer in the lung will start by the dividing of tissue cell in the lung at abnormal and uncontrollable level. Sometimes the cell may grow in strange condition and become bigger and then form a cluster. The NSCLC is the largest part of lung cancer diseases, with about 80% of patients suffer from it. Although the cancers are small, they can multiply fast and form a tumor – even large ones. The tumor then can spread to other organs and lymph nodes. Most patients won't realize that they have asbestos lung cancer until it's too late. They don't know about it because they don't feel any pain or symptoms. It's called as asymptomatic or without symptoms. To diagnose asbestos, the doctors require patients to undergo image tests, biopsy, and spit sample.
Asbestos can get worse if the patients have unhealthy habits such as smoking or drinking. Smoking will definitely worsen their condition. When patients start to feel initial symptoms they may cough over and over, have chest pain, suffer from bleeding sputum, have change in sputum's color and volume, have weight loss, suffer from appetite loss, suffer from headaches and often feel very tired.