According to the National Institute of Health, 2,000 men and women are diagnosed with mesothelioma every year, and most are not expected to survive longer than 14 months.
In the first half of the 20th century, asbestos was used to insulate a number ofasbestos-containing products including pipes on ships and in buildings, air conditioners, walls and breakpads. Due to its ability to resist heat, it was also used to make mits worn by boiler operators, furnace operators, smelters and many other jobs that involved frequent contact wtih heat.
Asbestos was sold in stores, and the people who handled it at the time were also exposed. Asbestos fibers are easily transferable from human contact. Because of this, anyone who handled asbestos products ran the risk of exposing any friends or loved ones through the simple act of a hug or any sort of after-work activity.
Though asbestos was highly toxic, the makers of asbestos and asbestos-containing products didn’t want to risk losing their businesses, and because of this innocent men and women continued to be exposed. Mesothelioma takes roughly 30 years to develop after exposure.