Kentucky Mesothelioma Lawyer

Approximately 14 to 30 people out of every one million in the population will be affected by mesothelioma each year. Mesothelioma is a rare type of cancer that has been directly linked to asbestos exposure.

Patients diagnosed with mesothelioma have only a 30 percent chance of surviving five years or longer after their diagnosis. Unfortunately, this type of cancer is nearly always fatal.

Manufacturers of asbestos and companies that installed asbestos are required to compensate victims who develop mesothelioma. However, it is up to you to protect your legal rights and to take legal action to obtain compensation.

A mesothelioma attorney at Becker Law Office can help you to make your case. Our goal is to help you recover monetary damages for your losses. From our offices in Louisville and Lexington we handle claims across .

Mesothelioma and Asbestos Exposure

Asbestos is a naturally-occurring silicate mineral that is found in rock and soil. Asbestos has strong fibers and is heat resistant, which made asbestos useful for many commercial and industrial purposes.

Asbestos was used in:

  • Insulation in buildings.
  • Fire retardant.
  • Roofing shingles.
  • Ceiling and floor tiles.
  • Paper products.
  • cement products.
  • Automobile friction products including transmission parts, brakes and clutches.
  • Heat-resistant fabrics.
  • Pipe insulation.
  • Boilers and furnaces.
  • Packaging, gaskets and coatings.

For a very long time, the use of asbestos was widespread. Many workers encountered asbestos products at their jobs or workplace. Unfortunately, the fibers turned out to be deadly when people breathed them.

In 1964, a rare cancer called mesothelioma was conclusively linked to asbestos exposure.  Today, mesothelioma is considered a “signal” tumor because the link between this type of cancer and asbestos exposure is so strong. When a person develops mesothelioma, it is generally assumed that asbestos exposure is the reason that the cancer developed.

The National Institute of Health (NIH) has estimated that around 11 million people were exposed to asbestos from 1940 to 1978. The length and extent of exposure, as well as genetics and general health will affect how many of these people will ultimately develop mesothelioma. The number of annual mesothelioma cases is still on the rise and is expected to peak around 2020.

What is Mesothelioma?

Cancer is a medical condition characterized by the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in your body. When you develop malignant mesothelioma, the cancer grows in the thin layers of tissue that covers many of your internal organs.

The cancer can start to grow in several primary places within the body:

  • The pleura, or tissue surrounding the lungs. This is the most common place for mesothelioma to originate and cancer that begins here is called pleural malignant mesothelioma.
  • The tissue in the abdomen. This is a less common type of mesothelioma called peritoneal mesothelioma.
  • The tissue surrounding the heart.
  • The area surrounding the testicles.

When cancer cells begin to grow, you will experience a variety of symptoms depending upon where the cancer originates. Those who develop pleural malignant mesothelioma will generally experience unexplained and unusual lumps in the chest area, chest pain under the rib cage, painful coughing spells, difficulty breathing or shortness of breath and weight loss.

Those who develop peritoneal mesothelioma will experience swelling, pain and lumps of tissue in the abdomen area as well as unexplained weight loss. If you experience these symptoms, it is important to get medical help right away.

Treatment and Prognosis

When you are diagnosed with mesothelioma, doctors will stage your cancer based on how advanced the mesothelioma is, how many cancer cells are found in your body and whether the cancer is localized or has spread. Unfortunately, in the vast majority of situations, the cancer cannot be removed from the body and so far there is no cure. Instead, your physician will provide palliative care, which means you’ll be treated to manage pain and make you more comfortable for the rest of your life.

Possible treatments that you may undergo when diagnosed with mesothelioma include:

  • Surgical removal of the cancer. In rare cases, surgery can provide for a cure if the cancer is diagnosed early and all cancer cells can be removed. If your cancer has spread and cannot be removed from the body, surgery can help to reduce your signs and symptoms. Surgical procedures can be performed to decrease the build-up of fluid in your chest to make breathing easier. Surgery can also remove as much cancer as possible to prolong your life, can remove a lung to relieve symptoms or can remove the tissue around the abdomen or lungs to relieve symptoms.
  • Chemotherapy can be used before or after surgery to kill cancer cells and to slow the growth of mesothelioma. Chemotherapy can be administered directly into the chest or abdominal cavities so the drugs can reach mesothelioma cells more directly, allowing for higher doses of chemotherapy drugs while causing less injury to other healthy cells.
  • Radiation involves using high-energy light beams to reduce signs and symptoms of mesothelioma by destroying localized cancer cells.

While there is no cure for mesothelioma, there are ongoing clinical trials throughout the United States. These trials attempt to improve the prognosis of mesothelioma patients. More than 50 percent of those diagnosed with mesothelioma can expect to be involved with a clinical trial, and more than 175 clinical trials have already been conducted.

On average, however, those who are diagnosed with Stage I cancer can expect to live an average of 32 months after diagnosis. Those diagnosed with Stage II mesothelioma have an expected life span of 19 months and those diagnosed with Stage III mesothelioma are expected to live around 13 months. When patients are diagnosed with Stage IV, the most advanced stage of cancer, the expected life span is just 6.5 months.

Taking Legal Action When Diagnosed with Mesothelioma

A mesothelioma diagnosis can be devastating and can leave you worried about your family and your future. In addition to coping with a serious medical diagnosis, many people with mesothelioma face expensive treatments. They are also worried about the families who are left behind when mesothelioma ends in death.

The laws allow for mesothelioma patients to take legal action against the manufacturers of the products that caused them to develop this aggressive cancer. Individuals with the disease can file a mesothelioma claim, while family members of those who have died from the disease can file a wrongful death claim. These claims can allow victims to recover compensation for medical bills and costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, emotional distress and wrongful death damages including loss of companionship.

Mesothelioma cases are complicated because there is a long latency period between the time of the asbestos exposure and the time that the cancer develops. It can take anywhere from 15 to 60 years after exposure for mesothelioma to be diagnosed.

Normally, it is difficult or impossible to bring a legal claim for something that happened so many years ago. However, there are special rules that apply to mesothelioma cases. Claims in Kentucky and Indiana must be filed shortly after the diagnosis of mesothelioma. Family members who are bringing wrongful death lawsuits also must file a claim within a short window of time.

After you have filed your lawsuit, you will need to prove your claim and your right to compensation.  Unlike most toxic exposure cases, it is not very difficult to link your asbestos exposure to the development of mesothelioma since it has become very clear over the years that asbestos does cause this type of rare cancer.

The challenge in asbestos cases, however, is to find and take action against the company responsible for your exposure. You must also prove a particular manufacturer or company is to blame for your medical problems. Many of the companies that installed or manufactured asbestos have gone bankrupt or have long since closed their doors. Taking action and recovering compensation from these companies is obviously impossible, but there are funds set up to provide money for asbestos victims in these situations.

The Mesothelioma Lawyers at Becker Law Office Can Help

A mesothelioma lawyer from Becker Law Office can help you make your claim. We know what companies to take action against. At Becker Law Office, our asbestos injury attorneys have the experience you need.

At Becker Law Office, our lawyers focus on negotiation and out-of-court settlements. We can negotiate aggressively on your behalf with the company responsible for exposing you to asbestos. We will work to get you a fair and full settlement without going to court.

If your case ends up in trial, you’ll be represented by a trial lawyer from Bubalo Goode Sales & Cronen.  Their trial attorneys have been named among the Top 100 Trial Lawyers in Kentucky. They are prepared to go to the distance to prove your case to a jury and get you the compensation you deserve.

Mesothelioma is a devastating diagnosis and one that should never occur. The companies responsible for causing this type of cancer need to be held accountable. You deserve a team that has the legal professionals who can handle each step of your case. Becker Law Office can put together your legal team so you will get the full amount of money possible from the asbestos company that caused you harm.

To learn more about how we can help with your case, give us a call or contact us online today.

References:

http://www2.epa.gov/asbestos/learn-about-asbestos#exposed
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/mesothelioma/DS00779/DSECTION=treatments-and-drugs

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