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Mesothelioma and health complications of asbestos exposure

On Behalf of | Mar 22, 2024 | Social Security Disability |

Mesothelioma is a type of cancer that most often affects the lining of the lungs, but it can also develop in the abdomen and the heart. This disease is almost always associated with exposure to asbestos, a group of minerals made up of microscopic fibers that can easily become airborne.

These fibers lodge themselves into the lining of the lungs causing extensive damage and tumors. Those who worked in shipyards, mines, textile manufacturing, and insulation installation are especially susceptible to this condition. Yet, mesothelioma isn’t the only condition tied to asbestos exposure.

But if you’re like most people, you’re probably tempted to write off symptoms as something less severe than they actually are. You don’t want to make that mistake with mesothelioma. That’s why in this post we want to look at some of the health complications that you or your loved one could experience after exposure to asbestos.

How asbestos exposure can negatively impact your health

It can take years, oftentimes even decades for symptoms of asbestos exposure to present. However, if you or your loved one worked in an industry where asbestos use was common, then you’ll want to be on the lookout for the following potentially serious signs of ailing health, including mesothelioma:

  • Shortness of breath: When your lungs are diseased and crowded by tumors, it can be hard to get enough oxygen with each breath. As a result, if you have mesothelioma of asbestosis, then you might find yourself consistently out of breath.
  • Crackling sounds when you breathe: Asbestos exposure can change the makeup of your lungs. As a result, you might notice changes to the sounds your lungs make when you take a breath.
  • Chest tightness: As your lungs become inflamed, you might feel excessive and prolonged tightness in your chest.
  • Blood in your spittle: A dry cough can be a sign of a number of illnesses, but if your cough results in the aspiration of blood, then your lungs are likely damaged. This can be a telltale sign of mesothelioma.

There are several other symptoms of asbestos exposure, including serious health complications. These include:

  • Clubbed fingers
  • Abdominal swelling
  • Fatigue
  • Pain in the abdomen or back
  • Hoarseness
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Unexpected weight loss

And while mesothelioma is a common resulting consequence of asbestos exposure, there are other medical conditions that can result. These include:

  • Lung cancer
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Laryngeal cancer
  • Pleural plaques
  • Pleurisy
  • Atelectasis

There are other medical conditions that can be implicated by exposure to asbestos. If you suspect that you or your loved one are experiencing signs of asbestos exposure, then you need to think about your next steps.

What to do if you suspect illness due to asbestos exposure

Your first step is to seek medical attention. Your doctor will only be able to diagnose your condition after an examination and appropriate testing. And only then can you figure out what your course of treatment should be and your prognosis.

While you’ll want to focus on your medical care and keeping yourself comfortable while you find a way to cope with your newly diagnosed condition, you should also consider taking legal action.

Depending on your circumstances, you might be able to pursue Social Security disability benefits, workers’ compensation benefits, or a personal injury lawsuit, any of which can help offset your medical expenses and your lost wages.

A successful personal injury claim might also help ease your pain and suffering. Legal action, then, can take financial matters off your mind so that you can think about your path forward and how best to spend time with your family.

Don’t worry if you’re unsure of where to start the legal process. It can be confusing and complicated, but that’s why many asbestos-related illness sufferers often seek assistance in building their legal claims.

By doing so, they can typically increase the chances that they’ll recover the compensation that they’re owed. If you’re interested in learning more about how to build one of these cases, then please continue to read our website.