Mesothelioma can cause years of suffering. The effects of the disease and its treatments can cause tremendous emotional and physical pain for patients and their families. Managing the symptoms of mesothelioma can also create a heavy financial burden.
If you have worked around asbestos or extensively used cosmetic products containing asbestos-contaminated talc, someone else could bear some responsibility for your disease. If you would like to seek justice and compensation, contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm to find out how a South Dakota mesothelioma lawyer can assist you. Call our offices at (800) 794-0444 for a free case review 24/7 with a team member.
Scientists have linked asbestos with causing mesothelioma and other forms of cancer. Asbestos exposure occurs most often in the workplace. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), around 125 million people worldwide experience occupational asbestos exposure.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), few products still use asbestos, though it was a common ingredient in many building and insulation materials until the 1970s. Products that may have once contained asbestos include:
- Floor tiles
- Patching and joint compounds
- Insulation used on boiler ducts, steam pipes, and furnaces
- Roofing shingles
- Automotive brake pads and linings
People who work on homes and buildings built before 1970 are at risk of asbestos exposure because fibers get released when building materials are disturbed. According to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), auto mechanics who work on brakes and clutches, textile manufacturers, and construction material manufacturers also could have experienced workplace exposure.
Because of the known dangers of asbestos, employers should protect their workers. Though it acknowledges that no level of exposure is safe, OSHA has specific standards regarding asbestos, including:
- Limits to the amount of time employees can work with asbestos.
- Asbestos containment practices.
- Mandatory provision of personal protective equipment (PPE).
- Medical monitoring for workers who have had asbestos exposure beyond the legal limits.
If your employer failed to follow safety protocols and protect you from asbestos exposure, and you have developed mesothelioma, you could hold them liable for your injuries. Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today for a free case review with a team member.
Cosmetic Talcum Powder
Another possible source of asbestos exposure is through consumer products that contain talcum powder. Talc and asbestos often exist beside each other in the ground, and when mined, the two could cross-contaminate.
Though some studies have linked cosmetic talc to ovarian cancer, there is some evidence it also could cause mesothelioma. The Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine studied over 30 cases of mesothelioma in which the patients’ only asbestos exposure was from talcum powder. If you believe your use of cosmetic talc led to your mesothelioma diagnosis, you might want to reach out to a South Dakota mesothelioma lawyer.
Mesothelioma is treatable but not curable, according to the Mayo Clinic. There are four types of mesothelioma that you could develop.
Pleural mesothelioma affects the tissue surrounding the lungs. According to the American Cancer Society, more than 75 percent of all mesotheliomas are pleural, and scientists have linked them to inhaling asbestos fibers. Symptoms might include respiratory problems, nerve and spinal cord pain, difficulty swallowing, and tumors on the chest under the skin.
Unfortunately, because many of its early symptoms resemble other minor ailments, like chest colds, pleural mesothelioma often goes undiagnosed until it has reached advanced stages.
Peritoneal mesothelioma can result from swallowing asbestos fibers. This form of mesothelioma affects the abdomen. People suffering from peritoneal mesothelioma may experience swelling and pain in the belly, weight loss, and nausea.
Pericardial and Testicular
Pericardial mesothelioma and tunica vaginalis are extremely rare forms of mesothelioma that develop in the lining of the heart and testicles, respectively.
Work with a Mesothelioma Lawyer
You could receive compensation for your illness or the death of your loved one due to mesothelioma. If your employer or someone else has liability for exposing you to asbestos, you could receive the following awards:
- Reimbursement for your medical care: Treating and managing mesothelioma may require chemotherapy, surgeries, palliative care, and radiation therapy. A mesothelioma attorney could help you recover these expenses.
- Wage compensation: Your mesothelioma symptoms may worsen to the point where you can no longer work—if they have not done so already. Your lawyer could help you seek damages for lost income (wages, benefits, or bonuses).
- Pain and suffering: Living with a disease like mesothelioma is challenging, both physically and mentally. You can seek damages for anxiety and stress that reduce your quality of life.
- Wrongful death benefits: Surviving family members may seek awards for the deceased’s medical bills and final expenses. You may also seek compensation for your loved one’s potential future earnings and the loss of their companionship and support.
- Punitive damages: When a manufacturer or employer deliberately committed harm or attempted to conceal wrongdoing, a court might award punitive damages. Plaintiffs receive these awards as punishment for the defendant’s actions.
South Dakota’s statutes of limitations for personal injury and wrongful death is three years per SDC § 15-2-14 and SDC 21-5-3. Because mesothelioma can take decades to develop after asbestos exposure, the time limit for mesothelioma cases usually begins at diagnosis, not at the time of injury. A South Dakota mesothelioma lawyer can review your case to determine whether the statute of limitations has lapsed.
Pintas & Mullins Law Firm Can Help
You can stand up to employers and manufacturers who have harmed you. If an employer did not protect you from asbestos exposure, or they concealed the presence of asbestos, if you develop mesothelioma as a result, you might qualify for compensation.
Pintas & Mullins Law Firm can help you pursue a settlement. We have helped mesothelioma patients and their families win awards worth millions of dollars. We do not back down from tough cases, and our goal is to help you along every step of your case.
A South Dakota mesothelioma lawyer can help you prove that asbestos caused your mesothelioma and that your exposure was because of someone else’s negligence. If you are ready to get started on your case, call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 794-0444 to discuss your case and take advantage of our risk-free consultation with a team member.