Asbestos is a naturally occurring, heat resistant, fibrous mineral which for years was the material of choice in the production of roofing shingles, floor tiles, ceiling materials, cement compounds, textile products, and automotive parts. However, asbestos use is now strictly regulated, since it has been directly linked to a number of health conditions.
When products containing asbestos are disturbed, tiny asbestos fibers are released into the air, and when inhaled, get trapped in the lungs and remain there. Over time, these asbestos fibers can accumulate, causing scarring and inflammation, affect breathing and sometimes result in serious health problems.
Individuals may be exposed to asbestos in their workplace, their communities, or their homes. Sometimes individuals are affected by asbestos through second-hand exposure if they come into contact with asbestos fibers on the clothing of someone who works around asbestos without adequate protective gear.
Some factors that determine the effects of asbestos exposure include:
How much asbestos an individual was exposed to.
How long an individual was exposed.
Size, shape, and chemical makeup of the asbestos fibers.
Source of the exposure.
Other risk factors, such as smoking and pre-existing lung disease.
Studies have shown that asbestos exposure may increase the risk of the following medical conditions:
Asbestosis: an inflammatory condition affecting the lungs that can cause shortness of breath, coughing, and permanent lung damage.
Nonmalignant Pleural plaques and thickening: changes in the membranes surrounding the lungs.
Benign pleural effusions: abnormal collections of fluid between the thin layers of tissue lining the lungs and the wall of the chest cavity.
Other forms of cancer.
How Much Compensation for Asbestos?
The exact dollar amount of compensation an asbestos victim can recover from a lawsuit cannot always be predicted with certainty. However, the type and severity of the asbestos related medical condition is typically the primary factor for determining for damages. If you have suffered injuries as a result of asbestos exposure, you may be able to recover for your medical expenses, past and future lost income, as well as your pain and suffering.
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