Asbestos fiber danger
June 1 2016 by Ray Sahelian, M.D.

Asbestos refers to a small number of minerals that are formed of flexible fibers and have the useful physical property of being very heat resistant. Because asbestos forms as flexible fibers, it is woven to make fabrics for heat-resistant and insulating materials. Chrysotile asbestos, the fibrous variety of the mineral serpentine, is by far the most important type of asbestos.

Info, lung cancer
Asbestosis is a chronic inflammatory condition of the lung's tissues caused by heavy exposure to asbestos. It could lead to damage to respiratory tissues and lung cancer.

Where is Asbestos Found?
Asbestos, widely used in building insulation and other products until the mid-1970s, has long been considered a cause of lung cancer and mesothelioma, a cancer of tissue lining the lung and other organs. Inhalation of its fibers has also been linked to other diseases. Problems can take years to develop. Now, it has been reported that exposure to asbestos can cause cancer of the voice box, or larynx, and possibly of the colon, stomach and upper throat. According to the American Cancer Society, about 9,500 American will be diagnosed in 2006 with cancer of the larynx, which can also be caused by smoking and alcohol abuse. Asbestos fibers also pass through the colon, rectum, stomach and throat.

Asbestos Exposure in Shipyard in India
September, 2006 - A Supreme Court-appointed panel has found that the health of around one in six workers in India's biggest shipbreaking yard is suffering due to exposure to asbestos. The Indian Express said that the panel found 16 percent of workers in the giant shipbreaking yard of Alang in the western state of Gujarat may have asbestosis. The panel, headed by India's top environment ministry bureaucrat, was set up by the court in February after a long campaign by environmental groups to stop the decommissioned French aircraft carrier, Clemenceau, from being scrapped at Alang. The 27,000-tonne carrier was said to be carrying hundreds of tonnes of asbestos. Groups like Greenpeace say that Alang does not have the proper facilities to safely scrap ships carrying toxic materials like asbestos and this poses a danger to workers' health. A report by Greenpeace in December said thousands of workers in countries such as India, Pakistan and China had probably died over the past 20 years in accidents or exposure due to toxic waste.

Occup Med (Lond). 2015 Jan. Working with asbestos and the possible health risks. The generic term asbestos refers to a group of crystalline mineral silicates that occur naturally in various forms. Because of their properties of strength, heat and electrical resistance and their ability to withstand corrosion by acids and sea water, asbestos was used extensively both in the UK and worldwide. Although the use of asbestos was banned in the UK in 1985 (amosite and crocidolite) and 1999 (chrysotile), it remains a significant occupational risk factor for work-related morbidity and mortality, causing both benign and malignant diseases, often with long latency. Further research is needed regarding exposure levels and health surveillance.