Are You a Phoenix, Tucson, Mesa or Arizona Resident with an Asbestos Legal Claim?
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that for years was valued for its ability to resist heat and fire. It was used widely in situations where heat resistance or insulation was needed. By the middle of the 20th century, it could be found everywhere from fire retardant coatings to lawn furniture to brake pads and shoes.
Some of the most popular uses have been as an additive to concrete, fireplace cement, pipe insulation, ceiling tiles, fireproof drywall and fire resistant roofing materials. It has even used in drywall joint compound. Firemen may still wear suits coated with asbestos.
Ship builders during World War II were constantly exposed to asbestos, despite the fact that the harmful effects of asbestos on human health were well known by this time. Since World War II, 14 out of every 1,000 workers, of the 4.3 million who worked in the shipyards, have died of mesothelioma.
Types of Asbestos
There are two groups of asbestos—serpentine and amphibole. The amphibole types—amosite (brown), crocidolite (blue) and tremolite asbestos—have been banned for use in most of the Western world since the mid-1980s because this type of asbestos is especially prone to causing asbestosis and the lung cancer mesothelioma. It is a known contaminant of the serpentine form, chrysotile.
It is estimated that 95% of the asbestos found in the U.S. is of the less dust-prone chrysotile form, which has contributed to the delay in banning the use of asbestos in this country.
Symptoms of Exposure to Asbestos
Shortness of breath, wheezing and hoarseness are common symptoms from long-term exposure to asbestos fibers. A persistent cough may develop, with blood present. The chest may feel painful and tight. It may be difficult to swallow. The face or neck may swell. Appetite may fall off, accompanied by weight loss, loss of energy and anemia.
Conditions Caused by Exposure
The most severe illness caused by asbestos exposure is mesothelioma, a type of lung tumor that forms in the mesothelial cells of the lung. Smokers are especially at high risk, if exposed to asbestos, as both cigarette smoke and asbestos dust are known carcinogens. Other types of lung cancer have also been associated with asbestos exposure, usually showing up 20 – 50 years after exposure. The longer the duration of exposure, the higher the risk of cancer becomes.
Even if asbestos doesn’t cause asbestos cancer (i.e. Mesothelioma), it causes other lung problems which can impact quality of life. Pleural plaques, areas that may calcify, reduce the efficiency of the lungs and their ability to diffuse the blood with oxygen. Diffuse pleural thickening, where more fibrous areas develop, can lead to chest pain and breathlessness upon exertion. There are few treatment options for those who find themselves more than mildly impaired by their symptoms. Asbestos can lead to scarring of the lung tissue, asbestosis. Unfortunately, when this type of fibrosis develops, it doesn’t stop when exposure to asbestos stops. Shortness of breath and loss of lung capacity increase risk for heart failure and cancer.
An asbestos lawsuit can be an effective means to gain compensation from unreasonably negligent companies. In most cases, in order to be successful in an asbestos lawsuit, medical causation and damages must be established. An asbestos lawyer can help evaluate a claim.
If you or a loved one have been exposed to asbestos, and are suffering from mesothelioma, asbestosis, or lung cancer, you should call our asbestos lawyers now at 1-800-THE-EAGLE (1-800-843-3245) or SUBMIT A SHORT AND SIMPLE CASE FORM HERE.
For more information about Arizona asbestos attorneys at Goldberg & Osborne, contact us now.
Our asbestos lawyers serve: Phoenix, Mesa, Tucson, Chandler, Glendale and all of Arizona.