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18th Annual Mesothelioma Awareness Day

Today is the 18th Annual Mesothelioma Awareness Day. This day is set aside to raise awareness of malignant mesothelioma and the need for research.

Malignant mesothelioma is a rare disease that affects around 3,000 people a year in the United States. A disease is considered rare if it affects less than 200,000 Americans a year.

The leading cause of malignant mesothelioma is exposure to asbestos. The exposure can happen as far as 50 years in the past. A lot of Americans assume that this is a disease that does not happen anymore because they think asbestos is banned. Neither of these premises are true.

Through awareness and research progress has been made. Research has given patients options that were not in play in the past. We have seen the direct role that research has played in moving the survivability of patients with mesothelioma from months to living with mesothelioma as a chronic disease.

The mesothelioma community is an active community. Organizing a group to successfully spread awareness is a challenge.

The main group behind the Mesothelioma Awareness Day is the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation. They raise awareness and fund research that hopefully will lead to a cure. The Foundation was instrumental in starting and growing this annual day.

Some of the ways that we can all spread the word about malignant mesothelioma is to wear blue on Sunday, support local efforts like walks, and support social media efforts to share the message. Individually we can talk with people about the disease and the devastation that it inflicts on families and help spread facts of this disease.

With the pandemic we have seen what awareness and sense of urgency can do. Making scientific research a focus and a national priority can help further the search for a cure. Research and support of research is the key to curing mesothelioma.

On Sunday, September 26, 2021 spend some time spreading the word! 

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