The development of pleural plaques is an indication that an individual has had enough asbestos exposure to cause other asbestos-related conditions
The signs of asbestos exposure affecting other body parts include abdominal pain and swelling, loss of appetite, weight loss, bowel obstruction, hoarseness, difficulty in swallowing, and clubbing of fingers.
Five specific warning signs that point towards the development of asbestos-related diseases include:
- Feeling short of breath: This is one of the first signs of an asbestos-related disease. Inhalation of asbestos fibers can lead to the formation of scar tissue in your lungs, which in turn makes it difficult to breathe.
- Swelling in the fingertips: Swollen fingertips that appear rounder and broader are a common sign of asbestosis. It is seen in about half of the cases.
- Extreme fatigue: Tiredness in combination with other common symptoms such as swollen fingertips and shortness of breath can be a sign of more serious asbestos-related diseases such as lung cancer and mesothelioma.
- Wheezing: Inflammation in the lungs causes wheeze, a whistling sound heard while taking a deep breath. In people who do not smoke, wheezing may be of concern and is an indication of asbestos exposure.
- Chronic dry cough: A persistent dry cough may develop even after 40 years of initial contact with asbestos fibers and serves as an indication of asbestos-related illness.