How Did I Get Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma affects thousands of patients and families each year, not just here in the United States, but across the globe as well. In the United States alone, it is estimated that 3,000 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma each year.
In many cases, those who develop mesothelioma may not know that they were ever at risk for harmful asbestos exposures, the only accepted cause of the disease. This challenge is compounded by the fact that mesothelioma has a very long latency period, with disease symptoms often only manifesting themselves decades after asbestos exposure occurs.
Asbestos is the only universally accepted cause of mesothelioma, and in most mesothelioma cases, asbestos exposure can be traced to an individual’s jobsite or the jobsite of a family member. Because asbestos was commonly used in a variety of products between the 1920s and the 1980s, many workers in trade industries, particularly insulators, pipefitters, millwrights, boiler makers, electricians, laborers, maintenance workers, mechanics, and construction workers, may have been exposed to asbestos during the course of their career.
Some of the most common industrial products that were known to contain asbestos include:
- Roofing and flooring materials
- Pipes and pipe fittings
- Brake pads
- Electrical wiring, panel boxes, and arc chutes
- Joint Compound
- Hot tops
Asbestos was used in these products to help boost durability, since it is resistant to fire, heat and chemicals, and does not conduct electricity.
However, when asbestos products are manipulated, installed, removed, or worked on, there is the possibility for release of toxic asbestos fibers that can cause disease.
Although many mesothelioma cases we handle involve direct occupational exposures to asbestos, there are a number of situations where asbestos-related disease occurs due to secondary exposure. Unlike direct occupational exposure, secondary cases do not involve exposure on the job – they involve exposure from someone who has already encountered asbestos, and is still carrying the airborne fibers on their clothes or in their hair.
This is most common among family members of those who have worked in an industry, such as steel mills, chemical plants, power plants, garages, aluminum smelteres, refineries, or other industry where asbestos and asbestos products were in use. For example, if a parent returns from a worksite and has asbestos fibers on their clothes or in their hair, it’s possible for family members to inhale that asbestos dust when the exposed individual’s clothes are shaken.
Although this does not involve direct contact with a product containing asbestos, secondary or household exposure is considered to be just as dangerous as exposure that comes as the result of direct contact.
Are you or a loved one coping with a recent mesothelioma diagnosis? If so, it is in your best interest to contact appropriate and experienced legal counsel as soon as possible.
Those who have suffered occupational or secondary exposure to asbestos may be qualified to file a legal claim, which can assist in the recovery of damages and other compensation. Such recovery can be critical when it comes to affording the medical costs associated with mesothelioma treatment.
Exploring Your Legal Options
At the Antion McGee Law Group, PLLC, our attorneys are proud to represent clients diagnosed with mesothelioma. One of the most important jobs that we have is to build a thorough work history of our clients and any family members who may have worked with or around asbestos or asbestos-containing products. Our firm can work with you to conduct a thorough investigation that assesses all possible sources of exposure to asbestos and determines what options are best for the course of your legal claim.
Our West Virginia mesothelioma attorneys are always willing to travel to meet with you. We understand that dealing with mesothelioma is never easy – that’s why we are committed to fighting on behalf of those who need it most.
Do not delay – our firm can provide the support you need today. To schedule a preliminary consultation to evaluate your case, contact the compassionate attorneys at Antion McGee Law Group, PLLC at (304) 807-0739.