Mesothelioma Awareness Day

“You have 15 months to live.” Imagine hearing those words. Then imagine knowing that the reason you have such a short amount of time left on this earth is because of a cancer that should be easily avoided, yet the leading cause of it could be in your home, at your place of work, or in your child’s school.

This is exactly what happened to a young woman who had just given birth to her first child and was planning on spending the rest of her long life with her husband and their newborn daughter, but instead she was trying to comprehend the idea of having a deadly cancer that will most likely going to shatter that dream.

Mesothelioma cancer is an aggressive cancer affecting the membrane lining of the lungs and abdomen and the primary cause and risk factor for mesothelioma is exposure to asbestos. Asbestos, a naturally occurring mineral that is classified as a KNOWN human carcinogen, yet it’s still a widely used material.  The substance can still be found in many homes, schools, and commercial or industrial buildings.  Is it in your home, workplace or even worse…your child’s school?

Every year around 3,000 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma and on average, they are given 10 months to live. Want to know the kicker? Asbestos is STILL NOT banned in the US.  Roughly, on average, 30 million pounds of asbestos are still being used in the United State per year!  The EPA estimates that there are asbestos containing material in most of the nations approximately 107,000 primary and secondary schools and 733,000 public and commercial buildings.  That means basically any one of us are at risk.

So what do we do?  Be aware!  Today I am being the voice to spread awareness about mesothelioma and the deadly effects asbestos has. Please share this information with others. If everyone shares this simple message we can save lives.

Heather and her family

Heather and her family

I am extremely happy to report that the woman in the scenario that I wrote about above is alive and healthy now 8 years after her deadly prognosis. I can’t imagine what was going through Heather’s mind when doctor’s gave her a diagnosis with only 15 months left to live, but thankfully after a life saving surgery that included the removal of her left lung, she is thriving more than ever. Heather and her husband Cameron are raising their daughter Lily and are now on a mission to spread awareness of mesothelioma, a PREVENTABLE disease that takes so many innocent lives.  Please take a moment to read more about Heather and her story on her blog here: Dying to be Heard

Today, September 26th is the 10th annual Mesothelioma Awareness Day.  Please take a moment to share some eye opening facts and statistics you didn’t know about mesothelioma before now.  Share it on your Facebook and twitter accounts.  Please join me in spreading hope and be a voice for the victims.

Sources:
http://www.mesothelioma.com/treatment/ – You can read about the treatment Heather went through.
http://www.mesothelioma.com/mesothelioma/ – about mesothelioma
http://www.mesothelioma.com/heather/awareness – Heather’s awareness page

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