A mesothelioma lawsuit is filed by a victim of mesothelioma in order to recover damages associated with their development of this asbestos related cancer. A mesothelioma case can help a victim seek reparations for medical expenses, lost income and pain and suffering. Mesothelioma develops almost exclusively as a result of toxic exposure to asbestos. This disease can remain latent in a victim for up to forty years; therefore people who were exposed to asbestos in the environment in the 1950s may still be at risk for developing this disease.
Who Is At Risk?
Asbestos has been used to make more than 5000 products in the last few hundred years. Asbestos is a naturally occurring group of minerals that is used to make products such as vehicle brakes and building materials. Asbestos is added to these products because it aids in heat and corrosion resistance. The deadly effects of asbestos have been known for over sixty years, though it continues to be used in a variety of industries. People in the construction, automotive, factory, railroad, shipyard, and custodial industries may all be at risk for the serious health consequences resulting from toxic exposure to asbestos.
What Is Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is a rare but fatal cancer that is caused by this harmful exposure to asbestos. Mesothelioma affects the mesothelium that surrounds and protects the internal organs of the body and can affect any organ in the body including the brain, heart and reproductive organs. Pleural mesothelioma is the most common and affects the lining surrounding the lungs. This lining can become cancerous when asbestos is inhaled at toxic levels. Many times the disease is asymptomatic, though symptoms may include a persistent cough, pain in the chest area or shortness of breath.
Mesothelioma also affects the peritoneal lining of the organs in the abdominal cavity. This type of mesothelioma, known as peritoneal mesothelioma, can also remain latent and asymptomatic for several years. If mesothelioma symptoms do develop they might include pain and swelling of the belly, nausea, bowel problems, weight loss, swollen feet, and anemia.
More Common in Men
Mesothelioma affects men three to five times more often than it affects women. It is diagnosed in patients at an average age of 50 to 70 years. Once diagnosed, mesothelioma is fatal. The average survival time after diagnosis is only one year, because the cancer is usually in its advanced stages by the time it is discovered. For people who are diagnosed earlier, about one half survive for two years and twenty percent make it to five years.
Why File a Mesothelioma Lawsuit?
A mesothelioma lawsuit can be filed in the legal system in order to seek reparations for medical expenses, loss of income and pain and suffering associated with the development of this disease. Employers and manufactures of asbestos containing products can be held liable for the injuries that develop as a result, especially when they were aware of the risks associated with the level of exposure they caused or permitted. Contacting a qualified lawyer is often the first step in discovering what your legal rights and options might be in a mesothelioma lawsuit. For more information on a mesothelioma lawsuit, please Contact a Mesothelioma Attorney who is familiar with other mesothelioma cases.