Most malignant mesothelioma with an identified cause occurs because of exposure to asbestos. Most victims are men who worked in industries with regular, high levels of asbestos exposure. Occasionally, though, a patient gets a mesothelioma diagnosis with no known asbestos exposure. When this happens, it may be possible to identify possible exposure, or there may be another cause of the cancer.
If you’re wondering, “Can mesothelioma be caused by something other than asbestos?” The answer is yes. In young patients who have little chance of having inhaled asbestos, there is likely another cause that triggered the growth of malignant mesothelioma. There are many possible causes and contributing factors.
Mesothelioma in Young People Without Asbestos Exposure
Research shows that in patients under the age of 35, mesothelioma affects both sexes equally, and there is a much lower chance of previous asbestos exposure than in older patients. There are, however, two factors that appear to be common regarding malignant mesothelioma in young patients. They are:
Some young mesothelioma patients previously underwent cancer treatment for another type of cancer. This treatment included therapeutic radiation to the chest or abdomen. While the risk of developing mesothelioma following this type of treatment appears to be low, it may be a causative factor in some cases.
Family History of Breast Cancer
A family history of breast cancer is a common factor among many people who develop malignant mesothelioma before the age of 35. Researchers continue to look into this link and the possible role it could play.
Research Continues to Identify Possible Causative Factors for Mesothelioma
There are also additional factors that may play a role in the development of mesothelioma. First, there are other minerals similar to asbestos, known as zeolites, that can cause this type of cancer. The most common is erionite. While no longer mined or used for civil engineering or construction projects, this mineral is common in certain areas of Turkey, as well as in Oregon, North Dakota, and the American Southwest.
Other possible causes of mesothelioma are related to genetic changes that occur in the individual or that are passed down to the person. This includes a mutation in the BAP1 gene. This mutation is rare, but there seems to be a link between those who have it and the development of malignant mesothelioma.
Researchers continue to look at other possible factors that could cause or contribute to the development of mesothelioma. One current theory points to infection with the simian virus 40 (SV40) that could increase the risk.
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Some Cases of Mesothelioma May Support Legal Action, Depending on the Cause
In some cases, patients with a mesothelioma diagnosis may be able to take legal action against those who played a role in causing their cancer. Asbestos-related mesothelioma is the most common example.
If you have a history of workplace exposure or other exposure to asbestos or a similar mineral and you now have mesothelioma, we can help. We will not shy away from tough cases. Let us look into the facts of your case and explain how we can help.
We also handle these cases based on contingency fee. Our clients never pay anything upfront, and we only get paid when you do. Reach out to us today for a free case review with a member of our team.
Talk to a Mesothelioma Lawyer About Your Case Today
Most cases of mesothelioma with a known cause stem from asbestos exposure. If you or a member of your family develops this aggressive cancer, you may be eligible to take legal action and pursue a financial award. At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, our mesothelioma attorneys can review your case for free.
To learn more about your rights and legal options for recovering compensation, call (800) 794-0444 now.