Starting with World War II, asbestos was used frequently in many different products. One of these products was pipe covering insulation. The fibers of the mineral asbestos are tough and durable and make ideal insulation. The use of asbestos took off during this time after the war and kept going full force for decades. However, asbestos is now widely known to cause a number of diseases including mesothelioma and lung cancer.
Pipe covering can be found just about everywhere, including homes and office buildings. Most pipes are covered in some type of insulation in order to protect the pipe from both heat and cold. Up until the 1970s some pipe covering was made with asbestos. The people who worked installing pipes and pipe covering as well as the people who had asbestos covered pipes in their homes and other buildings are at risk for developing mesothelioma and the other diseases that have been connected to asbestos exposure.
The asbestos fibers that are in pipe covering are tiny and fine and are easy to inhale. Unfortunately, they are also very sturdy and can become stuck in the lining of the lungs and other organs once they get inside the body. The result can be malignant changes to those cells that are affected.