Top Reasons Why Military Personnel Become Easy Target of Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma is basically a type of lung cancer that occurs mainly due to the asbestos exposure over a period of several years or decades. It develops quite slowly and steadily. The reason why it is a severe type of cancer is because of the fact that it takes the linings and tissues of the coverings of internal organs called mesothelium. And so, it mainly attacks on the linings of lungs and the rest of the abdomen.


Due to the severity of mesothelioma, almost 3,000 people are diagnosed with this form of lung cancer every year. There are treatments available that can only alleviate the symptoms to some extent. But there is no complete cure available to recover a patient.

In most cases, the victims of mesothelioma are known to have a life expectancy between 19-31 months. With the onset of new and advanced treatment, the survival rate can be increased. Even then, the survival rate in such patients has been found to be quite low due to the severity of the disease.

Patients with mesothelioma mainly show symptoms like fatigue, difficulty in breathing, severe chest pain and more. The reason why mesothelioma spreads is mainly because of the continuous exposure of hazardous mineral called asbestos which is often used in various construction work.


What's Asbestos?

It's important that you should have an idea why asbestos is so dangerous for the lives of human beings. Please note that asbestos is basically a naturally occurring mineral. It has a very specific property of having heat and corrosion resident fibers that can dissolve in the air when exposed to the environment.

Due to the heavy use of asbestos in construction sites, people or workers are generally get exposed to this naturally occurring mineral. Although, asbestos is found excellent due to its property of heat and corrosion-resistance, its direct exposure to human beings has been found quite hazardous.

Those who have the highest danger of getting exposed to asbestos are workers like military personnel, shipyard workers and other construction workers. The group of people tends to develop so many diseases and risks that prove life threatening.

Take a look at some of the valid points why mesothelioma diagnosis is quite high among military personnel and veterans.


Asbestos Use In the Military

It was in the era of early to late 90's when the use of asbestos was at maximum, especially in the construction field. The reason why asbestos was chosen is mainly because of its property of heat and corrosion resistance. Its main use was in making military-grade vehicles and in the construction of military bases.

In the same way, loads of asbestos based products were made in various navy vessels. As more and more asbestos based products started manufacturing, workers continued to expose with this mineral. On the other hand, military was completely unaware of this kind of hazard.

It was later found that companies that produced asbestos based products simply hid this fact that how dangerous can it could be for workers and buyers.

Most of such products were sold in US military branches that extensively used asbestos based products for many decades.


Asbestos Products Used By the Army

Products that were exposed to asbestos were purchased heavily by the military and were used in making buildings and vehicles. These buildings were specifically used by the Army personnel who slept in them. And this is how they started getting exposed slowly with asbestos fibers.

In the same way, products like clutch plates, brake pads and gaskets were used quite extensively in army vehicles. Army personnel who specifically had to work in vehicle maintenance works, insulation, carpentry and demolition of buildings became target of products containing high amounts of asbestos.


Asbestos Products Used By the Navy

Unlike the army, the US Navy is known to have the highest usage of asbestos products. It's because the use of asbestos continued to be there for decades. These products were employed mainly in shipyards, cruisers, submarines and navy ships. And so, the sailors who had to spend loads o time on the ship were at high risk of developing mesothelioma due to inhalation of asbestos.

In the present time, Navy personal who had the job of maintaining naval equipment are at highest risk of developing mesothelioma due to the prolonged exposure of asbestos. In addition to this, all those sailors who wore asbestos cloth as a kind of protective apparel resulted into the continuous inhalation of asbestos fibers.

There are some other navy personnel who are at higher risk of developing mesothelioma include fire control technicians, electricians, metal smiths, pipefitters, water tenders and more.

Another crucial thing to note here is that most navy personnel still have a chance to get exposed to the asbestos fibers when they are deployed overseas. It's mainly because of the presence of asbestos in buildings of international military bases.


Asbestos Products Used By the Air Force

Just like other military and navy veterans, many US air force veterans have also been highly exposed to asbestos during their tenure. The air force used such products quite extensively due to its heat resistant properties.

These products were basically employed at the construction sites like air bases, radar stations and at other places. According to the findings, cockpits and the engines of air force were found exposed with asbestos.

Similarly, firefighters were also found exposed with asbestos and contacting mesothelioma at later stages. 



Mesothelioma can't be compared with any other type of serious medical ailment as it is a dreaded for m of cancer that happens due to the prolonged asbestos exposure. Mostly, military personnel have been found to have exposed with this heat resistant mineral.

In general, people have been found affected with mesothelioma where they had a prolonged exposure to asbestos. The actual cause of mesothelioma is by inhalation of asbestos fibers. They are released in the air mostly when asbestos containing products are displaced from their respective positions.

You can find a number of cases even today where people are found having exposed with asbestos. Although, the use of asbestos is now restricted in various military constructions, the kind of exposure risk is still there.

Also Read:

Chrysotile Asbestos: EPA Submits Section 6(a) Rulemaking to OMB for An Honest Review



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