Aussie Study Finds That Loose Fill Asbestos Increases Mesothelioma Risk

Researchers from the Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra published a new landmark study in the journal, Lancet Public Health, examining the impact of living in a house containing loose fill asbestos. The two year study analyzed 17,248 people who had lived in around 1,000 houses with loose-fill asbestos insulation over 30 years.

Dr. Rosemary Korda, the lead author of the study, concluded that people who live in homes that have the loose-fill asbestos insulation have a 2.5 times greater risk of being diagnosed with a fatal form of cancer.

“The ACT Asbestos Health Study examined risks for people who had lived in a house with loose-fill asbestos, and we found that loose-fill asbestos insulation is very likely to be unsafe. Our findings have important health, social financial and legal implications for governments and communities in which asbestos has been used to insulate houses.”

Other key finding from the study include:

The association between living in a loose-fill asbestos house and mesothelioma was much weaker than that seen in studies where people were exposed to asbestos through their work; and

Rates of colorectal cancer rates were elevated in both men (32 per cent higher) and women (73 per cent higher) who had lived at a house with loose fill asbestos. These were higher than expected and might be due to unavoidable limitations in the study's design.

Despite the fact that the study was conducted in Australia, the results are instructive to the millions of people in the United States and Canada residing in homes containing loose fill asbestos insulation.

According to Dr. Korda, the study was drawn from information encompassing the medical records of more than one million people who lived in the Australian Capital Territory between 1983 and 2013. Data was drawn from health insurance enrollment lists, national death registrations, and a database of cancer patients. It compared the statistics of those whose homes had been insulated with loose-filled asbestos against those whose homes had not used the material.

In addition to finding a higher incidence of mesothelioma in those who lived in the loose-fill asbestos insulated homes, they also found that rates of colorectal cancer were higher.

The Paul Law Firm advocates for victims of asbestos-related diseases. If you or a loved one is suffering from mesothelioma, call the Paul Law Firm. With over 2.5 billion dollars collected for victims of asbestos exposure, we have the knowledge and the experience to fight for you. We also understand that fighting doesn’t just happen in the courtroom. It also happens in a lab where we are fighting for a cure. Check out the Mesothelioma Research Foundation of America here.

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