CDC Report: Deaths linked to mesothelioma are actually rising
According to a report recently issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the number of deaths associated with malignant mesothelioma increased nearly 5 percent from 1999 to 2015, jumping from 2,479 to 2,597. In total, there were 45,221 death certificates issued during this 16-year period in which malignant mesothelioma was listed as either the underlying cause or the contributing cause of death.
What is particularly troubling about these cases of mesothelioma – a form of cancer typically caused by exposure to asbestos – is that they are increasing despite the fact that asbestos use has declined sharply over the last several decades.
Who is most at risk?
While asbestos fibers are equally dangerous to everyone, the truth is that some groups are more likely to be exposed than others – meaning certain groups are more likely to suffer from asbestos-related illnesses. In fact, the recent CDC report shows that from 1999 to 2015:
- Males accounted for 80 percent (36,093) of the 45,221 mesothelioma-related deaths
- Individuals aged 65 and older accounted for 80 percent (36,366) of the 45,221 mesothelioma-related deaths
As these numbers indicate, older males are the most likely demographic to develop mesothelioma, which isn’t surprising given that several male-dominated professions have historically had to deal with asbestos on a daily basis, including those working in construction or automotive repair. The older age among mesothelioma victims is also expected since many individuals do not develop medical problems until decades of their initial exposure to asbestos.
Sadly, as the CDC report makes quite clear, asbestos is not a problem of the past, but a problem of the present. If you or a loved one has developed mesothelioma, you may have legal options available. Contact one of the skilled attorneys at Rose, Klein & Marias LLP to learn more about these options today.