The pleura consists of a double layered membrane which surrounds the lungs and lines the inside of the rib cage. Certain asbestos fibres inhaled into the lungs manipulate their way out to the pleura and can cause fibrosis or scarring to occur there. This has the effect of causing the pleura to thicken and therefore may show up on a chest x-ray.
Pleural thickening, also known as diffuse pleural thickening, is where extensive scarring extends over a large area and may restrict expansion of the lungs, leading to possible chest pain and breathlessness.
While the damage is irreversible, there are some treatment options available. Your doctor will be able to advise how best to treat the disease’s symptoms. This may involve pain medications, steroids and/or antibiotics.
Smoking can lead to decreased lung function. It is recommend that patients stop smoking if diagnosed with pleural thickening, this may also reduce their risk of developing more serious lung diseases.
Clydebank Asbestos Group are here to help you and your family - please contact us on 0141 951 1008 or fill in our contact form below and we will contact you.