Over at our Asbestos-Mesothelioma.com website we have a list of questions about job sites or work places where workers were likely to have had direct exposure to asbestos dust if they worked there before the mid-1970’s. See: “Brief Test For Asbestos Exposure Based On Worker’s Employment History”.
In turn, those workers may be at an increased risk of getting an asbestos disease such as asbestosis, lung cancer, or mesothelioma later in life.
In addition, family members of those people who worked around asbestos on the job site or in the work place may have had so-called “secondhand” asbestos exposure. This could come from household activities such as washing the worker’s clothing or, even more unexpectedly, from simply giving a welcome-home hug daily upon the worker getting back to the house each day. See: “How Members Of Worker’s Family Have Been Exposed To Asbestos And Developed Mesothelioma Many Years Later”.
This more limited exposure to asbestos dust may put these family members at an increased risk of getting mesothelioma later in life.
The bottom line is that the risk of developing mesothelioma increases with heavier asbestos exposure. However, there have been cases of individuals with relatively minimal asbestos dust exposure many years ago later developing mesothelioma, such as the family members of asbestos workers.
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