Asbestos in Plaster

Asbestos was used in plaster to help insulate buildings and increase fire-resistance. Unfortunately, this put people at risk of developing asbestos-related diseases, including an aggressive cancer called mesothelioma. Asbestos plaster remains a health hazard due to its frequent use throughout residential and commercial buildings.

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Asbestos in Plaster Explained

Various forms of plaster have been around for thousands of years, used in building construction, artistry and even medical applications. Plaster starts as a pasty substance that’s made from minerals and water, and dries into a sturdy, solid form. Asbestos was used in plaster to add fire resistance to walls and other surfaces.

The three most common types of plaster today:

  • Cement
  • Gypsum/Plaster of Paris
  • Lime

Until the mid-1980s, asbestos was commonly added to plaster. It was an inexpensive way to increase the plaster’s ability to insulate buildings and resist fire. It continued to make its way into some types of plaster through cross-contamination despite its known danger.

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Issues With Vermiculite Mines

Vermiculite is frequently mixed with cement to create mortar, and some vermiculite mines also contain asbestos. The most famous vermiculite mine is the Libby Mine, a now defunct mine in Montana that was a major global supplier of vermiculite until its closure in 1990 amidst massive litigation.

Although miners and manufacturers are more aware of asbestos contamination in mines today, it’s not clear whether all current vermiculite mines across the globe are asbestos free. Therefore, it’s possible that this cross-contamination may continue to this day.

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Asbestos exposure has led to thousands of mesothelioma diagnoses. If you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma, the Mesothelioma Justice Guide will help you understand your rights and know the next steps.

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Who Was Exposed to Asbestos in Plaster?

Plaster was a popular material across many fields, including construction work, medical applications and the arts. Fire-rated walls were one of the most common uses for asbestos plaster, as these had exceptional fireproof qualities. Acoustic ceilings and walls were another common use for asbestos plaster.

The following companies are known to have created asbestos-containing plaster products:

  • Bestwall Gypsum
  • Certainteed
  • Georgia-Pacific
  • Kaiser Gypsum
  • Keene
  • National Gypsum
  • Synkoloid
  • United States Gypsum
  • W.R. Grace

Anyone who worked with or near asbestos plaster may have been exposed and is at risk of developing mesothelioma.

How Exposure To Asbestos In Plaster Occurs

When plaster with asbestos is disturbed, asbestos particles may become airborne and can be inhaled. People who routinely mixed powders into plaster when asbestos was a common ingredient are at the highest risk of developing asbestos-related diseases like mesothelioma.

Today, people who are renovating or working on homes that have asbestos-containing plaster are also at risk. As plaster ages, it weakens and can break or crumble, releasing dangerous asbestos particles into the air.

If you are working on a home that may contain asbestos in plaster or any other construction materials, it’s critical that you protect yourself with proper ventilation masks.

Access Asbestos Trust Funds

Compensation for treatment, loss of income and other damages are available through Asbestos Trust Funds. Mesothelioma patients exposed to asbestos in plaster may qualify.

Find Out If You Qualify

Health Risks Of Asbestos In Plaster

Asbestos in plaster has been linked to several serious health conditions, including mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is a deadly form of cancer that develops after asbestos particles become trapped in the body’s natural lining and triggers a mutation in the nearby cells. Over time, these mutated cancer cells spread.

Mesothelioma is challenging to diagnose in its early stages and can develop for several decades before presenting any symptoms.

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Late Diagnosis with Mesothelioma

Unfortunately, the symptoms of mesothelioma do not become apparent until the later stages of the disease. Stage 3 and 4 mesothelioma cells are difficult to destroy and the survival rate for patients diagnosed with mesothelioma is often less than five years.

Asbestos exposure has also brings on lung cancers and diseases, including asbestosis. With asbestosis, asbestos particles cause irreversible scarring and damage to the lung tissues, which makes it difficult for the lungs to function properly.

The health risks associated with asbestos are severe. Therefore, people who were routinely exposed to asbestos plaster at any point in their career should be vigilant with their health check-ups and notify health care professionals that asbestos exposure occurred.

Seeking Justice For Mesothelioma Due To Asbestos Exposure

Mesothelioma is a deadly disease that has serious impacts on a person’s health and wellness, frequently resulting in loss of life. Even after manufacturers knew the dangers of asbestos, some continued to add asbestos to their plaster products, endangering the lives of hardworking Americans and their families.

If you have mesothelioma, you may be entitled to compensation for this negligence. Contact the experts at the Justice Network to begin building your case. Call us at (888)360-4215 or request our FREE Mesothelioma Justice Guide so we can help you and your family understand the available support options.

Mesothelioma Support Team
Stephanie KiddWritten by:


Stephanie Kidd works tirelessly as a dedicated advocate for the vulnerable and underrepresented. Stephanie worked as a copywriter for an agency whose focus was communicating safety procedures on construction work sites. With her extensive background in victim advocacy and a dedication to seeing justice done, Stephanie works hard to ensure that all online content is reliable, truthful and helpful.

View 7 Sources
  1. Encyclopedia Britannica, “Plaster,” Retrieved from Accessed on August 3, 2018.
  2. Inspectapedia, “Plaster types in buildings,” Retrieved from Accessed on August 3, 2018.
  3. Inspectapedia, “Master List of Asbestos Producing Companies,” Retrieved from Accessed on August 3, 2018.
  4. Stucco News, “The truth about asbestos in plaster,” Retrieved from Accessed on August 3, 2018.
  5. Canadian Woodworking, “Asbestos in plaster walls?” Retrieved from Accessed on August 3, 2018.
  6. Ask Jon Eakes, “Identifying Asbestos in your home,” Retrieved from Accessed on August 3, 2018.
  7. The Guardian, “Welcome to Libby, Montana, The Town That Was Poisoned.” Retrieved from Accessed on August 3, 2018.
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