Asbestos

Minneapolis Asbestos Attorneys

Asbestos Exposure Lawsuit

Asbestos consists of a group of six naturally occurring minerals composed of soft, flexible fibers that are resistant to heat, fire, electricity, and corrosion. These qualities make the mineral useful for myriad purposes. Companies have been utilizing asbestos for decades in everything from automobile brakes, to building insulation, to roofing tiles. But, while the characteristics of asbestos make it very useful in manufacturing many products, they also make asbestos highly dangerous to those who have worked with and around those asbestos-containing products.

Sadly, asbestos exposure has proven to be extremely toxic and potentially fatal. Exposure to asbestos-containing products is linked to mesothelioma, a fatal cancer of the tissue that lines the heart, lungs, and other organs. The attorneys at GoldenbergLaw, PLLC are currently handling cases where an individual has been diagnosed with mesothelioma after exposure to asbestos.

If you or a loved one has been exposed to asbestos or asbestos-containing products and developed mesothelioma, contact us today for a free asbestos lawsuit consultation. Get the Gold-standard mesothelioma representation you deserve.

Case Quick Facts

What is Asbestos?

The Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act of 1986 recognizes six types of asbestos that fall into two categories: Amphibole and serpentine. Serpentine asbestos fibers are curly, and they only contain one kind — chrysotile (known as white asbestos). Amphibole asbestos fibers have straight, jagged shapes, and there are five recognized types: Crocidolite, amosite, anthophyllite, tremolite, and actinolite.

Asbestos comes from all over the world; however, the current main exporters are Russia, Kazakhstan, and China. The toxic mineral was also once mined through North America. Asbestos deposits in the U.S. are located mainly on the western and eastern coastal states. Asbestos mining was prominent in the U.S. through the mid to late-1900s, reaching its peak in the 1960s and 1970s, but the last asbestos mine in the U.S. was closed in 2002.

What is Asbestos Used For?

Despite its toxicity, asbestos is still used in hundreds of U.S. products, including:

  • Insulation in walls and attics
  • Vinyl tiles used for floors
  • Sound absorption products
  • Ceiling tiles
  • Shingles
  • Siding on houses
  • Hot water and steam pipes coated with
  • Fabrics that resist heat
  • Car brakes
  • Automobile clutches
  • Paper products
  • Cement products
  • Textured paint and patching compounds used on walls and ceilings
  • Talcum powder products, such as Johnson & Johnson’s baby powder
  • Asbestos material or covered with an asbestos blanket or tape
  • Asbestos insulation for oil and coal furnaces and door gaskets
  • Asbestos paper, millboard, or cement sheets on walls and floors surrounding wood-burning stoves
  • Talc-containing crayons

How Can I Be Exposed to Asbestos?

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, asbestos can be released into the air by disturbance of asbestos-containing material during product use, demolition work, building or home maintenance, repair, and remodeling. Exposure may occur only when asbestos-containing material is disturbed or damaged in some way to release particles and fibers into the air.

Primary risk factors and occupations that are most in danger include:

  • Working at an asbestos mine or asbestos-processing plant
  • Working in a high-risk occupation, such as construction or heavy industry
  • Heating and ventilation engineers
  • Demolition workers
  • Plumbers
  • Construction workers
  • Electricians
  • Firefighters
  • Power plant workers
  • Shipyard crews
  • Serving on military ships or facilities built with products containing asbestos
  • Living in a residential area near an asbestos mine or contaminated site
  • Disturbing asbestos products during a home renovation without proper safety measures

Family members of veterans and other asbestos industry workers also have an elevated risk of developing an asbestos-related disease because of secondhand exposure.

Asbestos Exposure Injuries

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, there are three major health effects associated with asbestos exposure:

  • Mesothelioma (rare form of cancer found in the thin lining of the lungs, chest, abdomen, and heart)
  • Lung cancer
  • Asbestosis (serious progressive, long-term, non-cancer disease of the lungs)

However, additional injuries from asbestos exposure include:

  • Pleural effusion (type of pleurisy; collection that develops around the lungs after a few years after exposure)
  • Pleural plaques (hard structure around the lungs and diaphragm; calcification)
  • Pleuritis
  • Diffuse pleural thickening (thickening of tissue around the lungs)
  • COPD
  • Laryngeal cancer (voice box cancer)
  • Ovarian cancer
General Symptoms of Asbestos-Related Injuries

Signs of asbestos exposure affecting the lungs:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Dry cough or wheezing
  • Crackling sound when breathing
  • Chest pain or tightness
  • Respiratory complications
  • Pleural plaques
  • Pleural thickening
  • Asbestosis
  • Pleural effusion (accumulation of fluid in space surrounding a lung)

Signs of asbestos exposure affecting other parts of the body:

  • Abdominal swelling and distention
  • Abdominal or pelvic pain
  • Bowel obstruction
  • Hernia development
  • Weight loss
  • Loss of appetite
  • Hoarseness
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Clubbed fingers
  • Swollen fingertips
  • Fatigue

Mesothelioma Litigation Summary

Thousands of mesothelioma lawsuits are filed every year across the United States as a result of individuals suffering the serious and likely fatal disease most commonly caused by asbestos exposure. A mesothelioma lawsuit is a civil complaint that is brought against the companies that manufactured the asbestos-containing product. The goal of this complaint is to seek monetary damages for the injuries caused.

There are several different manners in which to pursue legal action related to wrongdoing on the part of the companies who manufactured the asbestos product. An injured party may bring a personal injury case. Specifically, the individual harmed by the asbestos product may bring the lawsuit. Alternatively, if that injured person has passed away, the heirs of the injured person may bring a wrongful death lawsuit. If an individual was injured due to asbestos exposure while working, a workers’ compensation claim might be an appropriate avenue to pursue.

Pursuing litigation related to asbestos exposure can be complex, and consulting with an attorney well versed in asbestos claims can help navigate this seemingly daunting task.

GoldenbergLaw, PLLC Can Help

GoldenbergLaw, PLLC is currently investigating cases where an individual has been exposed to asbestos and been diagnosed with mesothelioma or asbestosis. The attorneys at GoldenbergLaw, PLLC have been litigating cases for over 30 years and have the knowledge and expertise to provide you with the Gold standard of advocacy that you deserve.

Contact us today for a free mesothelioma lawsuit consultation and leave the sleepless nights to us.

Mesothelioma & Other Asbestos Injuries

Mesothelioma most frequently occurs in the linings of the lungs or the abdomen. Asbestos exposure is the main cause of pleural mesothelioma. This means that about eight in ten mesothelioma patients have been exposed to asbestos. There are more than 3,000 mesothelioma cases diagnosed annually in the United States. The average life expectancy for mesothelioma patients is between 12 and 21 months.

Mesothelioma symptoms include:

  • Dry coughing
  • Coughing up blood
  • Shortness of breath
  • Respiratory complications
  • Pain in the chest or abdomen
  • Fever or night sweats
  • Pleural effusion (fluid around the lungs)
  • Fatigue
  • Weakness in the muscles
  • Lumps under the skin of the chest

Asbestosis

Asbestosis is an incurable lung disease that makes breathing progressively more difficult and is usually caused by prolonged exposure to asbestos. Inhaling asbestos fibers can cause lung scarring and stiffness, which prevents the patient from taking deep breaths. Asbestosis is a contributing cause of death for more than 1000 Americans every year. Although asbestosis is not a cancer, a diagnosis of asbestosis denotes an increased risk of developing asbestos-related cancer.

Asbestosis symptoms include:

  • Persistent dry cough
  • Swelling in the neck or face
  • Cracking sound when breathing
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Hypertension
  • Finger clubbing (enlarged fingertips)
  • Nail deformities
  • Loss of weight/appetite

Lung Cancer

The inhalation of asbestos fibers has been connected to an increased risk of lung cancer in many studies of asbestos-exposed workers. This increased risk of lung cancer is seen with all forms of asbestos. The greater the exposure to asbestos fibers, the greater the risk of lung cancer. Most cases of lung cancer in asbestos workers occur at least 15 years after that person’s first exposure to asbestos.

Lung cancer symptoms include:

  • Persistent coughing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest discomfort or pain
  • Hoarseness or wheezing
  • Coughing up blood
  • Fatigue and loss of appetite
  • Swelling of the face or neck
  • Chronic respiratory infections

What Happens If I Am Exposed to Asbestos?

When asbestos dust or fibers are inhaled or ingested, the mineral fibers can become permanently trapped in the body and accumulate. No amount of asbestos exposure is considered safe, but asbestos generally has the most devastating impacts when a person is exposed to an immense concentration of it, or if they are exposed on a regular basis over a prolonged period of time.

Most asbestos exposure comes frominhaling asbestos fibers in the air. However, asbestos fibers may also be swallowed when people consume contaminated food or liquids (such as water that flows through asbestos cement pipes). This can also occur when people cough up asbestos that they have inhaled, and then swallow their saliva.

GoldenbergLaw, PLLC offers free consultations to those who believe they may have a mesothelioma lawsuit. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us — there is no charge and there is no obligation.

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