Asbestos exposure can cause a variety of severe health issues, including lung cancer, which has been cited as the leading cause of cancer death for men and women according to the American Cancer Society. Despite decades of evidence, some companies continue to use asbestos-containing materials. Contact a trusted asbestos lawyer today to arrange a case consultation and find out if you could have grounds for a lung cancer claim.
Asbestos-related injuries can be exceedingly difficult for the average individual to secure compensation for, as insurance companies may utilize tactics designed to slow down proceedings. A seasoned mass torts attorney with a track record of recovering just compensation for asbestos cancer victims and their families could help you hold the culpable parties responsible.
A highly fibrous, naturally occurring material, asbestos was used in countless products across a host of industries for much of the 20th century. Common products that contain asbestos include:
- Attic insulation
- Acoustical plaster
- Brake linings and brake pads
- Other automotive products
- Fire blankets
- Cement-asbestos board (transite) products
- Paints and coatings
- Heating and cooling system products
Asbestos is heat resistant, can be spun into fabric, resists chemical and electric damage, and in terms of tensile strength, is stronger than steel. The issue with asbestos lies in the fact that it contains millions of microscopic fibers that can break apart.
If someone inhales asbestos fibers, it is very difficult to expel them, which means they could become stuck in the person’s lungs and cause tissue damage. Within 10 to 40 years, the lung damage could lead to a range of serious health problems, including lung cancer. Part of the danger with asbestos is that there is no level of exposure which is considered safe. Exposure to even small quantities could still cause cancer or another health problem later in life.
Risk Factors of Asbestos Exposure
Asbestos was used in many construction materials, goods, vehicles, and buildings throughout the 20th century, and it was very common on job sites from the 1940s until around the late 1970s. Many industries relied upon it heavily, thus exposing workers to high levels of asbestos daily and increasing their risk of lung cancer.
Jobs associated with a high risk of exposure to asbestos include the following:
- Aircraft mechanics
- Aerospace workers
- Automotive technicians
- Coal miners
- Construction workers
- Military veterans
Other jobs commonly linked to the later development of asbestos lung cancer include cabinet markers, carpenters, chemical plant workers, pipefitters, power plant workers, plumbers, shipyard workers and shipbuilders, railroad workers, and welders. An asbestos attorney could help these workers or their families pursue fair compensation for their lung cancer.
Symptoms of Asbestos Lung Cancer
The symptoms of asbestos-related lung cancer are very similar to the symptoms of other lung cancers. Symptoms could be mild at first and worsen over time before the individual finally notices them. Signs of asbestos-induced lung cancer can include a persistent cough, chest pain, phlegm, fatigue, lack of oxygen, and shortness of breath.
If someone encounters any of these symptoms for a duration of several weeks without improvement, they should seek medical attention immediately. A diagnosis of lung cancer is reached through tests such as a biopsy, where the doctor takes a tissue sample, and imaging scans, like CT scans, MRIs, and X-rays that search for tumors inside the lungs.
Treatment for asbestos lung cancer typically involves chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation. If the cancer spreads too extensively, surgery may not be possible and palliative care could be used to keep the individual comfortable. The medical costs of treating lung cancer are extremely high, and while health insurance could cover some of the cost, it may not suffice to pay for all the patient’s expenses.
Compensation for Asbestos-Related Lung Cancer
A qualified asbestos attorney understands the physical, emotional, and financial toll a lung cancer diagnosis can bring. They could vigorously pursue compensation to help victims and their families move forward. There are several types of compensation an asbestos attorney could help the plaintiff recover, including medical bills (i.e. chemotherapy, radiation, surgery, test, and hospital visits), lost income, future lost earning capacity, and pain and suffering damages.
Contact an Asbestos Attorney for a Case Consultation
Your asbestos-related lung cancer could have been preventable if companies had ceased to use this harmful material once they aware it was dangerous. Call an experienced asbestos lawyer for a case consultation to find out if you could be entitled to pursue compensation.