By Treven Pyles
Posted on March 15th, 2019
Once you develop a lung disease and receive a diagnosis of a serious respiratory disorder, it is important to try to remember and recapture your past and see if you have been exposed to deadly asbestos where you have worked in the past.
It is up to you to connect the dots and understand the connection by identifying the link between working in a dusty environment without protective masks and your current diagnosis. As we know that asbestos exposure poses a serious threat to our health by causing severe respiratory disorders such as asbestosis, pleural plaques, pulmonary fibrosis, throat cancer, esophageal cancer and lung cancer, understanding more about the sources of this kind of exposure is quite helpful. Asbestos exposure is known to have occurred when you have inhaled asbestos fibers on a daily basis and got these fibers entrapped in your lungs eventually. The worksite was the most common place where you might have been exposed to asbestos, but, it was also common in the military.
You are likely to have been exposed to asbestos if you have
Asbestos fibers have been utilized in the manufacturing of several domestic, commercial, as well as industrial products due to its unique property of heat insulation and fire retardation. It can be found in insulation, ceilings, roofing and flooring tiles, cement, paint, and drywall. As a result, millions of workers were put at risk of asbestos exposure. Workers at factories, shipyards, and occupations involving manual labor in construction or other trades are more likely to have been exposed to asbestos on the job. As the US military relied on asbestos products, particularly on Navy ships, the veterans are at equally high risk of having been exposed to asbestos during their service.
Sometimes, people can develop asbestos-related conditions without working around the dangerous mineral. This is referred to as secondary asbestos exposure or indirect exposure and happens when an asbestos-exposed worker takes home asbestos fibers that have settled on work clothes, hair, and skin. This is as harmful as firsthand exposure. During the past century, men worked directly with asbestos products while doing labor jobs. Women, who washed their husband's work clothes, as well their children were more likely to fall sick because of secondary exposure.
If you have been involved in any of the occupations known to cause asbestos exposure, you need to be vigilant and look for any signs of deteriorating health as you age, specifically chest or abdominal pain and shortness of breath. Studies have confirmed the link between asbestos exposure and diseases such as mesothelioma and lung cancer. Mesothelioma is a deadly form of cancer that affects the lining of the lungs, heart, stomach, and testicles, and is respectively called pleural mesothelioma, pericardial mesothelioma, peritoneal mesothelioma, and testicular mesothelioma. Lung cancer is most commonly diagnosed among people exposed to asbestos. Other asbestos-related cancers include colorectal cancer, esophageal cancer, and throat cancer. Apart from malignant diseases, benign conditions such as asbestosis, pleural plaques, pleuritis have been attributed to asbestos exposure and are more prevalent than asbestos-related malignant conditions.
If you are experiencing symptoms such as chest/abdominal pain, persistent cough, shortness of breath, and weight loss or loss of appetite, you need to consult your doctor immediately. Let your doctor know about your past exposure to asbestos.
Even if you do not have any of these symptoms, but you have a history of asbestos exposure, it is always recommended to have annual chest X-rays and CT scans in order to monitor asbestos-related diseases.
If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, it is always better to seek a second opinion, preferably from a mesothelioma specialist as your symptoms and test results can be examined more thoroughly. Sometimes, you may not receive a diagnosis of mesothelioma and may be diagnosed with a less serious condition instead, which is referred to as misdiagnosis and is quite common with mesothelioma.
It is important to note that workers who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, lung cancer or any other asbestos-related disease are eligible to seek compensation from asbestos product manufacturers. If the company you have worked for in the past is found liable for the asbestos-related disease you have been diagnosed with, then you will be able claim compensation. There are four different ways of claiming compensation, which include:
While a few manufacturers have set up their asbestos trust funds, others will handle lawsuits through trials or settlements. At Environmental Litigation Group, P.C., our legal team comprising of experienced asbestos lawyers will thoroughly evaluate your case and check whether you qualify to file a claim. If you are found eligible for compensation, our team will take care of the further steps throughout the legal process including preparation and submission of the required documents so that you can totally concentrate on your health. Our law firm has successfully recovered compensation of over $1.4 billion for asbestos victims so far and will certainly be of help to you, too.
Our standard fee is a 40% contingency fee. Which means we only collect the fee when we are able to collect settlements or claims for a client. If we do not collect anything, our clients are not out any money out of pocket.