Fluid around the lungs (known as pleural effusion) and changes in the lining of the lung such as thickening, plaques and calcification may be early indicators of past asbestos exposure. Pleural effusions may be an early symptoms of mesothelioma.
Most cases of asbestos are diagnosed 30 years or more after a worker was first exposed to asbestos. In some cases, asbestos disease appears after 40 or 50 years.
Asbestos-related disease has been diagnosed in asbestos workers, family members, veterans and in particular Navy veterans, people who lived near a factory that used asbestos-containing materials and many trades workers who were exposed to asbestos dust. Many older buildings in New York City contain asbestos building materials and the asbestos may be released into the air if the asbestos is disturbed.