According to The Mesothelioma Centre mesothelioma is a very rare and aggressive form of cancer that is caused by asbestos fibres being inhaled by an individual.
Mesothelioma is a disease that is not common due to the fact that it mostly affects people who worked with asbestos and products containing asbestos. It has also been found to occur in people living in areas where asbestos was previously mined and where traces of asbestos are still in the environment where individuals can inhale or ingest these fibers.
The cancer develops in the body after a person has inhaled or ingested asbestos. The ingestion of these fibers result in changes in the individual’s DNA. Mesothelioma occurs because the inhaled / ingested fibers become lodged in the heart, abdomen or lungs. These fibers embedded in vital organs then cause damage to the mesothelial cells and cause inflammation. Over time, tumors begin to form on the damaged mesolthelial cells (also known as the lining of the lung, heart, abdomen or testes) and although some tumours can be benign, when they do become cancerous, this becomes a life threatening disease.
It is for this reason that asbestos has been outlawed in many countries and today, companies working with (removing and disposing) asbestos have to work with great caution to protect both the people working with this material and also those in the direct vicinity.