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What Is Mesothelioma and What Causes It?

Mesothelioma is a vicious form of cancer that has no cure. Unlike some other cancers that are isolated to one part of the body, mesothelioma attacks the tissue layer that covers numerous internal organs. Though typically associated with the lungs, this disease can also affect the heart, abdomen and testicles.

Most victims of pleural (lung) mesothelioma contracted their condition by breathing in asbestos fibers. This substance was used through much of the 20th century as a flame retardant in buildings, ships and other structures. The large majority of mesothelioma cases arise from work-related exposure. Industries that are particularly dangerous include:

  • Chemical processing — Whether a worker participated in the manufacture or processing of asbestos or was exposed to the substance as a supposed protection against high heat, dangerous fibers might have been ingested into the lining of the lungs.
  • Shipbuilding — Due to the durability of asbestos and the fear of shipboard fires, many vessels used the dangerous substance for decades, which accounts for an elevated rate of mesothelioma in shipyard employees.
  • Construction and demolition — Erecting or tearing down structures containing asbestos presents a terrible risk for anyone on the site, including pipefitters and plumbers. Even if someone is not directly involved with the material, airborne particles can be ingested.
  • Steel and other metal industries — During the period when people thought asbestos was safe, it was used extensively in steel mills and other metal plants where large, fiery furnaces were employed to treat metal.
  • Miners — Though people now understand the problems afflicting asbestos miners, many don’t realize that asbestos can form underground adjacent to coal or other types of minerals or metals that are being mined.

Even if there is no connection to one of these industries, a dedicated mesothelioma lawyer can make a detailed review of your situation and identify the parties who are responsible for the illness.

Prim Law Firm, PLLC provides thorough advice and advocacy for West Virginia victims of asbestos-related disease and their families. Please call 304-721-4619 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation regarding your situation. Our office is in Hurricane.

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