Around 3,000 new mesothelioma cases are diagnosed each year in the United States, and many more may go undiagnosed or unreported. Individuals and workers with a history of asbestos exposure are at greatest risk for this type of cancer.
Ohio has been one the largest manufacturing and industry hubs for nearly a century for a variety of companies–rubber and tire, steel and auto, to name a few. But the advantage of employment and prosperity came with a cost: the health of workers exposed to to toxins in the workplace, and the development of cancers like mesothelioma.
Workers in various industries are at high risk, including those who worked in steel mills, power plants, paper mills, auto plants, oil refineries, mining sites and other job sites with older buildings.
Hazardous occupational exposures to asbestos fibers have occurred in a variety of industrial operations, including mining, milling, manufacturing, shipbuilding, and construction. Current exposures to asbestos in the United States occur predominantly during maintenance work and demolition and remediation of older buildings containing asbestos.
Thousands of workers were exposed to toxins at the workplace, and later diagnosed with asbestos-related diseases. Because of the long latency period of mesothelioma and lung cancer, workers may not suffer until decades later.
The lining of the chest and lungs (pleural mesothelioma) is the most common site for mesothelioma, accounting for the vast majority of cases. Between 70 to 90 percent of new diagnoses are pleural mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma of the peritoneum, or peritoneal mesothelioma, is an asbestos-related cancer that forms in the abdomen. About 600 cases of this type of mesothelioma are diagnosed each year in the United States—less than 20 percent of all meso cases.
Initial symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma can include abdominal distension, stomach pain, inflammation, swelling or tenderness, constipation or diarrhea. A peritoneal mesothelioma diagnosis is confirmed through a biopsy. This form of cancer is often misdiagnosed as less serious medical conditions, but a history of asbestos exposure may help determine an accurate diagnosis.
The cancer develops in the lining of the abdomen (peritoneal mesothelioma) is the second most common cancer site. It accounts for about 15 to 20 percent of all mesothelioma cases diagnosed—approximately 500 cases in the U.S. each year. This form of mesothelioma originates in the lining of the abdomen and can spread to the liver, spleen, and bowel.
Severe abdominal pain is the most common symptom, followed by discomfort caused by fluid build-up.
While almost always fatal, it has a more favorable prognosis than other types of mesothelioma, and patients have been known to live with the disease for up to seven years or more. Asbestos inhalation or ingestion is the known cause. Asbestos fibers may be swallowed or trapped in mucus during inhalation. Asbestos fibers in the peritoneum can cause inflammation and lead to cancer.
Pericardial mesothelioma may only represent one to two percent of all diagnoses. Pericardial mesothelioma, which originates in the lining of the heart cavity, accounts for less than one percent of all mesothelioma cases. As this cancer progresses, the heart becomes unable to deliver oxygen to the body, causing a decline in health at a rapid rate. Pericardial mesothelioma may be the result of cancer metastasizing from other parts of the body and forming tumors around the heart after asbestos exposure.
Testicular mesothelioma is another rare form of the disease, with fewer than 100 cases having been diagnosed. As with Pericardial Mesothelioma, it is suspected that the disease originates from mesothelioma cancer elsewhere in the body transported to the testicles after asbestos exposure.
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Up to 80 percent of mesothelioma patients have an extended history of occupational asbestos exposure making it the only major risk factor. Asbestos is cheap, durable and resistant to fire, resulting in its common use as insulation in many older buildings. Asbestos was used in the production of thousands of products including auto components, building materials, and consumer products. It was regularly used up until the late 1970s.
Asbestos is now associated with the development of lung cancer and mesothelioma long after asbestos fibers are inhaled or swallowed. In cases of occupational exposure, workers who are exposed to asbestos at their workplace may bring the fibers home on their clothes or person, risking exposing their family.
Diagnosing mesothelioma is difficult on some occasions and may require clinical evaluation, chest x-rays, CT scans, personal work history, and a biopsy for a proper diagnosis. Specialized imaging may also be used to help evaluate the size and location of the mesothelioma.
The treatment and management of individuals with advanced mesothelioma may require a team of medical professionals, such as physicians who specialize in chemotherapy of cancer (oncologists), specialists in the use of radiation (radiation oncologists), and other doctors.
Asbestos exposure in the workplace has been a concern for decades now, and the effects are still lingering throughout the U.S. with cases of mesothelioma, asbestosis and lung cancer still being diagnosed each year.
Based on asbestos consumption and mesothelioma data, it was estimated that the number of cases among males would peak from 2000–2004 (approximately 2,000 cases) and after that period, the number of mesothelioma cases was expected to steadily decline. In contrast, the results of the current study indicate an increase in the number of malignant mesothelioma deaths during 1999–2015.
Despite regulatory actions and the decline in use of asbestos, the annual number of mesothelioma deaths remains substantial. The annual number of malignant mesothelioma deaths is increasing, particularly among persons over 85 years old, most likely representing exposure many years ago.
Indeed, a report released by the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found the annual number of deaths from malignant mesothelioma increased nearly 5 percent from 1999 to 2015.
In that period, a total of 45,221 deaths with malignant mesothelioma as the primary or contributing cause of death were reported in the United States. That includes an increase from 2,479 deaths in 1999 to 2,597 in 2015. Deaths increased despite continual regulatory measures to reduce cancer risks.
The continuing occurrence of mesothelioma deaths underscores the need for increasing asbestos exposure prevention and to press corporate contributors by taking legal action.
It will take time to obtain a mesothelioma settlement, though the process can be quickened by hiring the correct attorney—one with experience. The Lyon Firm works hard to expedite injury claims to provide as much financial help as possible. A settlement may require a few months, or more than a year, depending on various issues related to your case.
According to recent reports, the average mesothelioma settlement has been between $1-1.4 million and typically paid by multiple defendants. Compensation may go to the estate or surviving family members, depending upon who filed the mesothelioma claim. Distribution of settlements to surviving family members is handled on a case-by-case basis.
Lawyers say many asbestos manufacturers focused on sales and profits, and failed to improve workplace safety standards. Some companies ignored emerging damaging medical evidence, and even hid information that might damage their business.
As a result, workers have filed asbestos-related claims against over 8,000 corporations. The number of victims is still growing, and lawyers in Ohio are currently involved in litigation, including the claims against dozens of companies.
Malignant mesothelioma is primarily associated with occupational inhalation exposure to asbestos fibers. Most cases occur in older individuals with a history of occupational exposure. Only about six percent of deaths were in people younger than 55.
According to the National Cancer Institute, factors associated with asbestos-related disease include:
About 30 percent of mesothelioma cases involve veterans, many of them Navy veterans, a high-risk group of veterans developing mesothelioma. Asbestos was used in shipyards and on most ships between the 1930s until the late 1970s, particularly during World War II.
With a latency period of up to 50 years, mesothelioma and asbestos-related lung cancer can still be diagnosed in veterans.
Following the devastating consequences of a terrible illness, it may be prudent to contact a Cincinnati Mesothelioma Lawyer to mitigate the financial burden on families who must deal with rising medical expenses and long-term financial hardships.
Joe Lyon is a highly-rated Cincinnati Mesothelioma Attorney reviewing asbestos exposure cases nationwide. The Firm handles cases on full contingency fee basis.
The Lyon Firm has settled numerous asbestos exposure cases, and has the resources to build the strongest case possible, and recover the maximum compensation from Asbestos Trust Funds as possible.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma and want to discuss your legal options, call the Lyon Firm for a free case review.
Following a diagnosis of mesothelioma, asbestosis or lung cancer, victims may begin to trace the source of asbestos exposure and hire an experienced mesothelioma attorney to recover potential compensation. The majority of mesothelioma settlements are reached without ever having to enter a courtroom.
Settlement amounts may depend on the following:
Trust funds have been established to pay victims of negligent asbestos exposure at the workplace. Trust funds are now created by companies that have gone bankrupt, but are still liable for illness and damages.
Mesothelioma victims may be eligible to file a claim against one or more asbestos trust funds and seek Ohio mesothelioma settlements. There are about 60 asbestos trust funds with over $30 billion available for payouts. Some of the larger asbestos trust funds include:
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that was first utilized in the early 1900s for its insulating abilities, fireproof properties, and versatility. It has been estimated that over 30 million tons of asbestos was used in the American economy in industrial yards, homes, schools, shipyards, and other workplaces.
The natural breakdown of asbestos products and subsequent sawing or cutting of the asbestos creates dust and fibers that are inhaled and can lead to mesothelioma and other severe forms of lung cancer.
When asbestos breaks down over time or with use, the fibers of the material can become airborne, presenting a risk of inhaling or ingesting the toxin. Asbestos is a cancer-causing agent, and those heavily exposed can develop scarring in the lungs and later develop lung cancer and mesothelioma.
Asbestos was widely used in piping, insulation, electrical components, machine parts, packaging, flooring, ceiling tiles, roofing, and in many building materials.
If you were exposed to asbestos at your workplace, and have developed cancer or a related illness, you are likely to qualify for compensation.
Asbestos was cheap, durable, fire-resistant and light, and was thought to be the perfect insulating material before research showed it was extremely hazardous to the health.
The success rates of settlements regarding asbestos exposure injury are quite high. It may be necessary to prove that occupational exposure is the primary cause of lung cancer or mesothelioma, though this is the job of The Lyon Firm, and we have experience in reaching large mesothelioma settlements.
Foseco, located in Cleveland, Ohio, has been named in more than 5,000 asbestos-related lawsuits. According to court records, at least eight former employees have died from mesothelioma, asbestosis or asbestos-related lung cancer. Foseco has paid more than $13 million in settlements to victims. Foseco used millions of pounds of asbestos for castings, some used inside engine blocks. Steel mill and foundry workers were at risk of developing deadly diseases from Foseco’s products.
Owens Corning has been named in thousands of lawsuits over the hazards of its products, which include roof tiles, heat and pipe insulation, cold storage systems and cement. In 2006, the company created the Owens Corning Fibreboard Asbestos Personal Injury Trust, which has already paid out hundreds of millions to victims of mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases.
Ohio attorneys allege the company knew about the dangers of asbestos, but failed to properly warn workers about the hazards of toxic exposure. Lawyers involved in asbestos lawsuits have said Owens-Corning knew about the hazards of their products but they chose to advertise the products as safe.
In 1997, a Florida jury handed down $31 million in punitive damages after a former Owens Corning worker developed mesothelioma. The court determined Owens Corning concealed information concerning asbestos hazards for decades.
Owens-Illinois manufactured a line of asbestos pipe and boiler insulation products under the brand name Kaylo, which became well known for causing many health issues in former employees. In 2011, an Illinois jury awarded a former worker who later developed mesothelioma $90 million in damages against Owens-Illinois. Lawyers stated those who worked in Owens-Corning factories faced exposure hazards on a daily basis. The company has settled thousands of asbestos cases and Owens-Illinois is still involved in asbestos-related litigation today.
Dana Corporation, in Maumee, Ohio, manufactured asbestos-containing brake pads, brake linings, thermal management products, gaskets and seals. Any shop worker in company could have been at risk for lung cancer, mesothelioma and other diseases. In 2007, the company settled 7,500 lawsuits, and many other may still have a claim. Dana Corporation has created a trust fund for former employees of the company worth $700 million.
Scott’s Company Asbestos Lawsuits
Scotts Co., manufactured popular fertilizer products in Marysville, Ohio which contributed to the deaths of at least five workers. Almost anybody working in the plant could have been affected. Two of the five died of asbestos-related lung cancer more than 25 years after they first were exposed at the workplace. Dozens of other current and former workers have been sickened by asbestos fibers on the job, and filed asbestos lawsuits, citing court documents, workers’ compensation claims, medical records and interviews.
Several types of workers in Cleveland, Ohio’s North American Refractories plants were exposed to a number of dangerous products on a regular basis. This may include cement workers, chemical workers, steel and metal workers, and practically any other employees in the area. The company’s ceramic refractories, hearths and blast furnace fittings and coatings were known to be asbestos laden. The company was bought out years ago, but because of the continuing lawsuits, the company has an estimated $1 billion in liabilities.
A majority of the thousands of lawsuits filed against Republic Powdered Metals in Medina, Ohio are related to its asbestos-containing Bondex products. The toxic line of products included exterior finishing systems, coatings, colorants and pigments, cleaning products, wood treatments, sealants and asbestos fuel additives. These products were bought by consumers in private and industrial sectors, exposing employees and many more, including painters and roofers.
Lincoln Electric, in Euclid, Ohio, has been named in thousands of asbestos-related lawsuits, primarily over its welding rods. In 2003, a jury awarded two former employees more than $6 million after they developed mesothelioma and lung cancer. A more recent verdict in 2010 turned out $21 million for failing to warn workers of the risks.
The majority of asbestos-related lawsuits filed against GM stemmed from of asbestos-containing brake linings and clutch facings. By 2009, the company was liable for an estimated $636 million in asbestos claims.
Lawyers say GM factories endangered auto mechanics, warehouse employees, brake and clutch assemblers and boiler workers.
The most dangerous asbestos-containing products manufactured by GM include adhesives, transmissions, brake linings, clutch linings, disc brakes, drum brakes, engines and gaskets.
The initial symptoms of mesothelioma may appear to be less serious conditions or misdiagnosed as other cancers. But patients with a history of asbestos exposure are urged to be vigilant of mesothelioma symptoms, including:
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