Jun 29

People have been aware for decades that the ultrafine fibers of asbestos pose a serious danger for people who are chronically exposed to the substance. While asbestos occurs in nature, they are in amounts that are not considered dangerous to humans. However, because it was used in the manufacture of so many consumer goods in the bad old days, people have been exposed to copious amounts of asbestos. This is true of most people, but especially those who actually worked in industries that made or used asbestos.

Unfortunately, as asbestos lawyers have argued for years, the symptoms of diseases that can be causally linked to asbestos exposure take a long time to manifest. A good example is malignant mesothelioma, cancer of the mesothelium, which is the protective covering of the lungs, abdomen, heart, and other internal organs. Asbestos-related mesothelioma most commonly develops in the pleura, which is the covering of the lungs.

More than 27 million people were exposed to asbestos because of their jobs between 1940 and 1979, by which time it became apparent that asbestos was a health hazard. Between 1973 and 1984, there was a three-fold increase in the diagnosis of mesothelioma among people with occupational exposure to asbestos. In the decade between 1980 and 1990, more and more people started dying of the disease, which indicates that it could take years for the symptoms to manifest, as much as 40 years in some cases.

When diagnosed with mesothelioma, patients can expect it to change their lives, and available treatment modalities can be expensive. If there is reason to believe that the condition is due to occupational asbestos, a personal injury lawyer in the area specializing in mesothelioma or asbestos-related cases should be consulted before the statute of limitations runs out. Compensation that may be sued for medical and life care expenses may be forthcoming for successful cases.

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