Mesothelioma is cancer of the mesothelium – the lining which surrounds human organs – and is most commonly linked to asbestos exposure. The cancer can metastasize and attack the organ it is protecting, as well as other organs. Mesothelioma cancer symptoms can take up to 50 years to present; however, most patients die within one to two years after the cancer has fully metastasized.
Mesothelioma most commonly affects the lungs, abdomen and heart:
While millions of Americans have been exposed to asbestos fibers over the past century, those at an increased risk for developing mesothelioma often worked in: shipyards; the automobile industry; as pipefitters; in the construction industry; in the steel industry; and in power plants or oil refineries.
It is commonly alleged that asbestos manufacturers, suppliers and distributors knew that inhaling asbestos fibers could result in mesothelioma, and that they failed to warn the companies that used asbestos, the employees that worked with asbestos and others who were exposed to asbestos on a regular basis. Most Americans who worked with asbestos were never provided with safety masks, respirators or protective clothing to prevent asbestos inhalation.
Treating mesothelioma cancer can be done using traditional (standard) methods or by newer, non-traditional methods currently being tested in clinical trials.
Traditional methods. Traditional mesothelioma treatments include surgery, radiation and chemotherapy. Surgery attempts to physically remove all or some of the cancer; radiation uses high-energy x-rays or other types of radiation to kill cancer cells or keep them from growing; and chemotherapy uses drugs to stop the growth of cancer cells – either by killing them altogether or by preventing them from dividing further.
Non-traditional methods. Newer mesothelioma cancer treatments include biologic therapy, hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy, photodynamic therapy and gene therapy.
Over one million people have filed mesothelioma injury lawsuits against asbestos manufacturers, sellers and distributors alleging personal injuries and wrongful deaths due to the manufacture, sale and distribution of this dangerous product while failing to warn of known dangers. Many more lawsuits are expected to be filed over the next 15 years.
Defendants have paid out over $1 billion in compensation for mesothelioma injuries, including: medical costs; lost income; loss of spousal support and companionship; loss of earning capacity; loss of consortium; loss of enjoyment of life; physical impairment or disfigurement; costs of rehabilitation; emotional distress; end of life expenses; pain and suffering; punitive damages and more.
Mesothelioma cases need support from experienced doctors. For legal cases, a lawyer experienced in mesothelioma claims is also needed. If you need help with your mesothelioma claim, call toll-free at 877-493-6342 or fill out this online contact form to learn about your legal options.