Over the past century, a great number of individuals have been exposed to asbestos in a variety of trades, including plumbing, construction, mining and others. Mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer, is commonly known to be the result of exposure to asbestos. If you or your loved one now has mesothelioma, or has died from the disease, it is necessary to take legal action with the help of an experienced lawyer. Our West Virginia injury lawyers at Mani Ellis & Layne, PLLC represent the injured and their families in mesothelioma cases, and will pursue the maximum possible compensation for this terrible and deadly situation.
Approximately 3,000 new cases of mesothelioma are diagnosed every year throughout the United States, and the risk for mesothelioma is lower in women. Mesothelioma is a very serious disease and by the time that symptoms appear and the cancer is diagnosed, the disease is often very advanced. This type of cancer can be very hard to treat and the average survival times for people with mesothelioma ranges between 4 and 18 months. Some people live much longer, and statistics show that between 5% and 10% of people with mesothelioma live for at least 5 years after being diagnosed.
Exposure to asbestos causes cancerous cells to form in the tissue that surrounds and protects the internal organs. This often begins in the chest or in the abdomen, and in some cases may be identified as beginning in the tissue surrounding the heart. Once the disease is diagnosed, which can be difficult, death usually occurs within a few years. When a worker has inhaled asbestos fibers, they work their way into the pleural sac that surrounds the lungs. This form of mesothelioma is termed “pleural mesothelioma.” Another form that can strike a worker exposed to asbestos is peritoneal mesothelioma, in which the asbestos fibers and the disease are in the membrane surrounding the abdominal cavity.
The length of time that an individual is exposed to asbestos will have a great deal to do with whether they will contract the disease; the more exposure, the more likely to develop mesothelioma. The main reason why people between the ages of 50 and 70 years old are the most likely to be diagnosed with mesothelioma is because it does not always manifest itself until many years after the exposure has occurred. Asbestos was used in thousands of products throughout most of the twentieth century, most often in building products that are used in homes, factories and office buildings throughout the country.
Those who work in specific industries, shipyards, power plants, chemical plants, or on the railroad or in the automotive industry are all susceptible to asbestos exposure and must be aware of the possibility of mesothelioma. Thankfully, most individuals today are aware of the dangers of asbestos exposure and can take safety precautions to avoid harmful levels of exposure. Regardless of this knowledge, however, not everyone takes the proper safety precautions. If your employer has failed to inform you of asbestos exposure or has not provided protective gear for you to wear on the job, you may be able to seek compensation.
In any case of mesothelioma, identifying the source of the exposure can be an important part of the legal action and how you can proceed to recover compensation. At Mani Ellis & Layne, PLLC, we have a great deal of experience in recovering high value compensation in injury claims, either by achieving a fair settlement or at trial. We will evaluate your case and advise you how we believe the case should be handled. We are concerned about you, your future and your family, and will do everything possible to achieve justice. For more information, we encourage you to contact a West Virginia mesothelioma lawyer at our office.