Asbestos exposure can be linked to numerous types of cancerous and non-cancerous injuries. The effects of asbestos exposure to you or a loved one can be life-threatening and may require substantial medical intervention.
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What is Asbestos Exposure?
Asbestos exposure is the inhalation of microscopic asbestos particles, a carcinogen made up of natural minerals that are resistant to heat and chemicals.
Exposure to asbestos occurs when an individual is in direct contact with asbestos, usually through inhalation. Once inside the body, some asbestos particles are filtered out while others settle permanently. The particles that remain travel to other organs where they damage the protective lining and cells.
Due to its unique qualities, asbestos was used in thousands of different products within the United States such as insulation and automotive brakes, to name a few. Though not known at the time, millions of people were exposed to asbestos on a frequent basis. In 1989, the Environmental Protection Agency banned asbestos from products entering the marketplace. However, there are still traces of asbestos in the US today.
The effects of asbestos exposure often take years to develop after initial contact. The type of injury that asbestos can cause differs.
Asbestos exposure is the primary cause of mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer that can disrupt the lining of several internal organs.
Asbestos can be linked to four different types of mesothelioma:
Common symptoms of mesothelioma include fatigue, shortness of breath, coughing, weight loss and chest pain. Mesothelioma symptoms typically take decades to occur, so early screening is important to getting ahead of cancer. Once fully developed, however, mesothelioma can spread rapidly. Unfortunately, there is no known cure for mesothelioma. Contact our Houston mesothelioma attorneys today to learn more about your legal options.
Asbestos-Related Lung Cancer
Asbestos exposure has been linked to lung cancer. Like mesothelioma, asbestos particles settle on the lungs and build up over time. Both also spread in a short amount of time when developed completely. The difference is that lung cancer forms inside of the lung.
Asbestosis is a chronic non-cancerous lung disease caused by the inhalation of airborne asbestos particles. Once the particles enter the body, they become trapped in the alveoli. Over time, more particles gather together to the point where they irritate the lung tissue. Shortness of breath, coughing and chest pain are common symptoms of asbestosis.
Pleural plaques consist of thickened tissue around lung tissue due to asbestos exposure. Although noncancerous, pleural plaques can lead to a higher risk of developing other asbestos-related injuries in the future.
If you are or believe to be suffering from any of the injuries listed above, seek medical attention.
Talk with a Professional Asbestos Attorney
Asbestos-related injuries can be physically, mentally, and economically taxing on an individual and family. If you have been affected by asbestos, reach out to one of our Houston asbestos attorneys today. At Ramsey Law Group, we may be able to seek compensation for victims of asbestos exposure and their family members.