DescriptionCircumstances of exposureTumour sites (or types)
for which there is sufficient evidence of carcinogenicity in humans
Group of naturally occurring fibrous minerals with current or historical commercial usefulness due to their physical and chemical properties. Asbestos is used for insulation in buildings and as a component in a number of products, such as roofing shingles, water supply lines, fire blankets, and plastic fillers, as well as clutches and brake linings, gaskets, and pads for automobiles.
The principal forms of asbestos are chrysotile (white asbestos) and crocidolite (blue asbestos). Other forms are amosite, anthophyllite, tremolite, and actinolite.
Exposure to asbestos occurs through inhalation of fibres:
  • most frequently from contaminated air in the working environment (people who live with asbestos workers may be exposed to asbestos dust through clothes);
  • but also from ambient air in the vicinity of asbestos-processing industries;
  • or indoor air in housing and buildings containing friable asbestos materials (installation, removal, or repair of asbestos-containing products in household maintenance represents a mode of exposure).
  • Lung
  • Mesothelioma (cancer of the cells of the mesothelium, the protective lining that covers the chest, the abdomen, and the space around your heart)
  • Larynx
  • Ovary