Mesothelioma is a relatively rare form of cancer.  It is a cancer of the mesothelium, the sac lining body cavities.  Mesothelioma can occur in any body cavity, but about 70% of mesothelioma cases are pleural mesothelioma, or cancer affecting the lining of the chest cavity around the lungs.  This type of mesothelioma is so commonly associated with asbestos exposure that the Department of Health and Human Services’ Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry calls it “a signal tumor for asbestos exposure.”

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, and you worked with asbestos, you may be able to receive compensation for your injury.  In some cases, this can help you pay for treatment, or, at worst, it can help you make sure your loved ones are taken care of if your mesothelioma proves to be incurable.  Discuss your case with a Columbus, Ohio attorney at the law firm of Robert W. Kerpsack, CO., L.P.A. by calling (614) 766-2000 today.

Did I Work with Asbestos?

Ideally, your employer should have informed you if you worked with any toxic substances, including asbestos, but if you worked in any of the following industries, you may have been exposed to asbestos:

  • Manufacturing of insulation, roofing, or car parts
  • Automotive repair (especially brakes and clutches)
  • Construction or demolition
  • Shipbuilding
  • Oil refineries or offshore rigs
  • Railroad car construction or repair
  • Steel processing
  • Mining or ore processing
  • Coal, oil, or gas-fired power plants

If you worked in any of these industries, chances are you may have been exposed to asbestos.

How Can I Recognize Mesothelioma?

Unfortunately, in its early stages, mesothelioma is hard to recognize.  Initial symptoms include coughing, shortness of breath, chest pain, night sweats, and weight loss among other nonspecific symptoms. This contributes to delayed diagnosis of mesothelioma.

How Long Between Exposure and Diagnosis?

Mesothelioma caused by asbestos exposure can take a long time to appear.  Fifty years or more is not unheard of, so people working with asbestos in the 50s, 60s, and 70s are currently being diagnosed.  This time frame is only based on the occurrence of cases, and there is not any established upper length of time between exposure and diagnosis.

Can My Mesothelioma Be Treated?

The treatment of mesothelioma depends on the stage at which it is diagnosed.  Stage I mesothelioma is confined to the chest and is treated with a combination of surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy.

Treatment for Stage II mesothelioma and beyond is generally confined to an attempt to relieve symptoms.  Overall 5-year survival rates for mesothelioma was about 7%, less than half that for lung cancer.

If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma that you suspect is related to asbestos exposure, contact the Columbus, Ohio personal injury lawyers at Robert W. Kerpsack CO., L.P.A. online or by phone (614) 766-2000 today to discuss your legal options.