Symptoms & Diagnosis

Although intact asbestos is harmless, once disturbed and airborne, asbestos fibers are easy to inhale and are extremely toxic. Years of inhaling these asbestos fibers can seriously affect a person’s health, causing some to develop various types of cancer, including mesothelioma.

In most patients, noticeable symptoms of mesothelioma take between 15 and 50 years to arise. When present, symptoms typically include:

  • Arrythmias
  • Chest pain
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Fatigue
  • Hoarse throat
  • Weight loss
  • Persistent coughing
  • Sleeplessness

Those who experience any combination of the above symptoms and who have a history
of asbestos exposure should seek immediate medical attention for a proper diagnosis.
Doctors will likely perform a biopsy, an x-ray and/or a CT scan to determine whether or
not mesothelioma cancer is present.


Diagnosing mesothelioma can often be difficult because the symptoms are often similar to a multitude of other medical conditions. A history of exposure should increase medical suspicion. If you have been exposed, make sure to notify your doctor of the exposure. Diagnosis usually involves a combination the following tests and procedures:

  • Physical examination
  • X-Ray
  • Lung Function Test
  • CT Scan
  • Biopsy

If you have any of the symptoms listed on our website and have been exposed to asbestos it is imperative that you provide your doctor with as much detail as possible about your asbestos exposure.