Posted on July 14th, 2020
While more evidence is necessary for a definitive causal relation, several medical studies found a connection between asbestos exposure and prostate cancer. However, to become eligible for compensation, you must also have another disease caused by asbestos exposure in addition to prostate cancer.
As the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States, prostate cancer occurs in 1 out of 9 men. By the end of 2020, over 190,000 new cases of prostate cancer will have been diagnosed throughout the country. While the causes of prostate cancer include having a family history of prostate cancer, being obese, smoking, being African-American, and having the age of 65 or older, there is medical evidence that the disease can also occur as a consequence of asbestos exposure, although more research is necessary for a definitive causal relation. According to a recent study published in the Permanente Journal, prostate cancer was significantly more prevalent among men who had a history of occupational asbestos exposure. However, it is important to keep in mind that if you developed prostate cancer as a result of asbestos exposure, you are not eligible for compensation, as you need to have a second disease caused by exposure to asbestos that qualifies you, such as lung cancer or mesothelioma.
According to the same study, the primary mechanism of absorption of the asbestos fibers which caused prostate cancer in men was respiratory. In other words, men who inhaled asbestos fibers which were released in the air by various work activities were the ones who came to struggle with prostate cancer, as once inside the lungs, asbestos fibers can easily travel through the bloodstream and the lymphatic system to the prostate, to which they will attach themselves. Over the years, the asbestos fibers embedded in the tissue of the prostate will cause severe inflammation and scarring which, in turn, may lead to the development of malignant tumors on the organ. Some of the most common symptoms of prostate cancer are the following:
A Danish study conducted in 1993 revealed that people who worked in asbestos cement factories had a 36% higher risk of developing prostate cancer than those who had not been exposed to asbestos. In 1980, a similar study by the American College of Chest Physicians examined 37 people who passed away due to pulmonary diseases caused by asbestos exposure. It concluded that people who have asbestos fibers in their lungs are likely to have asbestos fibers in other areas of the body as well. Out of the 14 prostate samples examined by researchers, 6 contained asbestos fibers. Finally, a more recent study from 2003 examined the participants of the Finnish Asbestos Screening Campaign. Researchers, who were monitoring the health of 23,285 men and 930 women who were working with asbestos, discovered that there was a significantly higher incidence of prostate cancer in men than in the general population. Furthermore, the participants were also more susceptible to developing lung cancer and mesothelioma.