Thursday, Sept. 26 marks the 16th annual Mesothelioma Awareness Day, an awareness and fund-raising campaign by the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation.
The Meso Foundation is calling on individuals across the country to “paint the world in mesothelioma blue,” by wearing blue – any blue will do – on Sept. 26, and share photos of themselves showing their support of Mesothelioma Awareness Day on their social media pages. People are also encouraged to attend a third-party fundraiser benefitting the Meso Foundation. For a full listing of events, visit the organization’s website calendar.
The Meso Foundation is a nonprofit collaboration of patients and families, physicians, advocates, and researchers dedicated to finding a cure for mesothelioma, a rare but deadly form of cancer linked to asbestos exposure. The disease forms in the lining of internal organs such as the lungs, abdomen or chest, and can take up to 50 years to develop. Once diagnosed, the prognosis is generally dire.
Asbestos is a mineral that was widely used in construction, shipbuilding and friction materials. More than 60 countries around the world have banned the importation, mining and use of asbestos. It is still used in the United States, however, its use was restricted in the 1980s. It had been known for decades by then that asbestos could cause this devastating cancer.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the Trump administration has loosened restrictions for asbestos and announced it will allow new uses of the carcinogenic mineral on a case-by-case basis.
Sharon Zinns, who works in Beasley Allen’s Atlanta office, is leading a team handling mesothelioma claims. They are looking at cases of industrial, occupational and secondary asbestos exposure resulting in lung cancer or mesothelioma. Additionally, they are looking into claims of asbestos-related talc products linked to mesothelioma.