Comprehending the Characteristics of Mesothelioma

Personal Injury Lawyer

Mesothelioma is a form of lung cancer that is usually caused by exposure to asbestos particles. When asbestos breaks into pieces, it often creates asbestos dust. This is particularly common during asbestos mining operations or when building materials such as insulation or floor tiles that contain asbestos are removed. When the asbestos dust is inhaled, even the tiny particles can lead to developing mesothelioma. This is because those particles will stay in the lungs, or in the stomach lining if a person swallows any of them. One of the most frustrating parts is that it can take many years for the cancer to develop and present symptoms. This makes it very difficult to effectively treat the disease in its earliest stages.

Statute of Limitations

Regardless of how long ago you were exposed to asbestos, the statute of limitations for filing an injury claim or lawsuit is based on the date you were diagnosed with mesothelioma. Very often the diagnosis does not occur until 20-40 years after the period of asbestos exposure. During a consultation with a skilled lawyer, you can get more information about how much time you have to move forward with legal action. A successful claim or lawsuit may result in receiving a large settlement, but the amount awarded to you will be based on a number of factors. For example, if you were exposed to asbestos while working for a company that is now out of business, unless they set aside sufficient funds for settlements, you may not receive any funds. Talk to a lawyer as soon as possible to learn more.

Not Everyone Develops Mesothelioma after Exposure to Asbestos

Though two people may be equally exposed to the same amount of asbestos, one might develop mesothelioma, while the other person does not. There is not always an explanation for this, but there are risk factors that may increase the likelihood of developing mesothelioma. Those risk factors include:

  • A history of exposure to asbestos. If you were exposed to asbestos fibers while in your home or your workplace, you are at higher risk for developing mesothelioma compared to someone who was not exposed to it.
  • Second hand exposure to asbestos. When someone is exposed to asbestos (such as while at work) and that person carries the asbestos fibers with them on their clothing, skin, or hair, when the fibers reaffix to surfaces in the home, others in the home may inhale or swallow the fibers.
  • A family history of developing mesothelioma. If a direct relative — in particular, a parent — developed mesothelioma, you are at a higher risk of developing it yourself.
  • You underwent radiation therapy in the chest area. Mesothelioma is a cancer that attacks the lungs, so being subjected to radiation in your chest area puts you at higher risk.

If you have developed mesothelioma, you may be eligible to receive compensation from the party responsible for exposing you to asbestos. Learn more about your legal options from a skilled lawyer, today.