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Asbestos and Mesothelioma

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If you have been diagnosed with asbestosis or mesothelioma, our solicitors can help you make a claim for compensation on a No Win No Fee basis. For obligation-free assistance contact our legal team.

What is Asbestos?

Asbestos is the name given to a group of minerals that occur naturally as bundles of fibers which can be separated into thin threads.

There are six different fibrous minerals:

  • Chrysotile (white asbestos)
  • Amosite (which usually has brown fibres)
  • Crocidolite (blue asbestos)
  • Tremolite
  • Anthophyllite (which usually has grey fibres)
  • Actinolite

The fibres may be easily inhaled and become trapped in the small air tubes (bronchioles) of the lungs, resulting in serious health problems. The signs of asbestos-related diseases may not become evident for many decades after exposure.

Exposure to Asbestos

Asbestos has been used in many industries, particularly the construction and building industries, manufacturing and the shipbuilding industry.

Asbestos products include: cement sheet and pipe products used for water supply and sewage piping, residential and industrial building materials, heat and electrical wire insulation, paints, coatings, and adhesives, underlying material for sheet flooring, roofing materials, in car brakes.

Exposure to asbestos may increase the risk of contracting Asbestosis and Mesothelioma.

What is Asbestosis?

Sufferers develop shortness of breath, cough, and in advanced cases, blue lips and swollen finger tips. As the disease progresses the patient may have little or no exercise tolerance and suffer symptoms similar to severe asthma.

This condition can be diagnosed on chest x-ray. Although chest x-rays cannot detect asbestos fibers in the lungs, they can help identify any lung changes resulting from asbestos exposure. Interpretation of the chest x-ray may require the help of a respiratory specialist.

Unfortunately, no cure exists for any of the illnesses caused by chronic exposure. Treatment involves preventing further complications and treating symptoms.

What is Mesothelioma?

Mesothelioma is a form of lung cancer that may be a serious complication of asbestosis. The cancerous cells are found in the mesothelium, a protective sac that lines the chest and abdomen. This cancer is extremely virulent and spreads rapidly.

The latent period between exposure to asbestosis and development of mesothelioma can be up to 40 years or more.

Shortness of breath and pain in the chest due to an accumulation of fluid in the pleura are often symptoms of pleural mesothelioma. Symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma include weight loss and abdominal pain and swelling due to a buildup of fluid in the abdomen.

Treatment options for patients diagnosed with asbestos-related cancer of the lung or pleura are limited to resection (surgical removal of a part), chemotherapy, or both.

Asbestos and Mesothelioma Compensation Claims

Compensation laws vary from State to State. Generally speaking, however, under the common law, compensation can be claimed for:

  • Past and future medical expenses
  • Past and future pharmaceutical expenses
  • Loss of income and income earning capacity
  • Pain and suffering

The spouses and dependent children of someone who has died from an asbestos-related illness may also be entitled to claim compensation for loss of financial support, as well as for loss of domestic services.

If you believe that you may be suffering from an asbestos related disease then it is important to get a medical diagnosis confirming the condition. You should seek medical advice immediately. Make an appointment to see your GP (general practitioner). They will take a clinical history from you, examine you and order medical tests. They most likely will also refer you to a Specialist doctor.

If you have been diagnosed with an asbestos related condition which you contracted during work, then you may be entitled to asbestosis compensation or  mesothelioma compensation. You should seek legal advice as soon as possible.

Our personal injury solicitors specialise in asbestos disease claims. Contact our service for obligation-free legal advice.

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