Mesothelioma is a deadly disease that has silently affected thousands of Americans to date. The exposure to environmental hazards over a long period of time has been difficult to determine a diagnosis and treatment. If you are a victim of mesothelioma, you or your family may file a claim against the company responsible for your exposure or illness so you can obtain fair compensation. Sutliff & Stout can help you file a claim and you can receive the medical support you need.
What is Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is a rare, slow-developing form of cancer in which malignant (cancerous) cells are found in the mesothelium, which is a protective sac that covers most of the body’s internal organs. The mesothelium has different names, depending on its location in the body. By way of example, the peritoneum is the mesothelial tissue that covers most of the organs in the abdominal cavity.
How Do You Get Mesothelioma?
Some of the causes of mesothelioma consist of people who worked in industries where asbestos was used heavily. Asbestos is fibrous minerals composed of thin fibers. Excessive exposure leads to mesothelioma, asbestosis, and other cancers and diseases.
A history of asbestos exposure at work is reported in about 70 percent to 80 percent of all cases. An increased risk of developing mesothelioma has been found among shipyard workers, people who work in asbestos mines and mills, producers of asbestos products, workers in the heating and construction industries, and other trades people. However, mesothelioma has been reported in some individuals without any known exposure to asbestos. Today, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) sets limits for acceptable levels of asbestos exposure in the workplace. And people who work with asbestos are required to wear personal protective equipment to lower their risk of exposure.
Who is Exposed to Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is usually found in men older than 65 with a history of blue-collar work or a military background. However, any individual with a history of asbestos exposure is at risk. These types of jobs include:
- Oil and gas refinery employees
- Power plant employees
- Railroad employees
- Construction workers
- U.S. Navy veterans or shipyard workers
It is not uncommon for someone to bring asbestos fibers home with them carried by parts of their body, including skin, hair, nails and clothes. Unfortunately, this exposes family members to the risk of developing mesothelioma.
What are the Early Symptoms of Mesothelioma?
Symptoms of mesothelioma may not appear until 30 to 50 years after exposure to asbestos. The symptoms can include shortness of breath and pain in the chest due to an accumulation of fluid in the pleura. Symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma can include weight loss and abdominal pain and swelling due to a buildup of fluid in the abdomen. Other symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma may include bowel obstruction, blood clotting abnormalities, anemia, and fever. If the cancerous cells have spread beyond the mesothelium to other parts of the body, symptoms may include pain, trouble swallowing, or swelling of the neck or face.
How to Test For Mesothelioma?
Diagnosing mesothelioma is often difficult, due to the fact that the symptoms are similar to those of a number of other conditions. The process begins with a review of the patient’s medical history, including any history of asbestos exposure. A complete physical examination may be performed, including x-rays of the chest or abdomen and lung function tests. The doctor may also want to conduct a CT scan or MRI. To confirm a diagnosis of mesothelioma, a biopsy is needed. If the diagnosis is confirmed, your doctor will want to determine the stage (or extent) of the disease.
How Do You Treat Mesothelioma?
Treating mesothelioma depends on the location of the cancer, the stage of the disease, and the patient’s age and general health. Standard treatment options include surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. Sometimes, these treatments are combined.
How Long Can You Live With Mesothelioma?
According to Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance, the life expectancy of a patient is approximately 12 to 21 months based on stage, gender, and age. Treatments such as surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation can help improve quality of life and increase life expectancy. Approximately 40% of patients live past one year; with less than 10% to live longer than five years.
Who Can File a Mesothelioma Claim In Texas?
In Texas, the victim of mesothelioma may file a claim within two years of diagnosis.
If he or she passed away due to mesothelioma, a wrongful death claim can be filed by the estate, including family members within two years of death. Family members include spouse, children, and/or parents of the deceased person. After the passing of a loved one, it is important to contact a qualified wrongful death lawyer as soon as possible.
How Much is a Mesothelioma Case Worth?
The average mesothelioma settlement amount is approximately $1 million dollars. In Texas, the following types of damages can be recovered are medical expenses and/or funeral expenses, loss of income, pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of companionship, loss of consortium, and wrongful death. When filing a claim on your behalf, Sutliff & Stout’s priority is to secure fair compensation for you and your loved one.
How Much Does it Cost to Hire a Mesothelioma Lawyer?
When you hire Sutliff & Stout, there is no upfront cost. Our Firm works on a contingency fee basis, which means that we only get paid if we are able to recover money on your behalf. These cases can be complex, take several months, and can become very expensive. When hiring a law firm, be sure to hire a law firm that has the money and resources to invest in your case.
Speak With a Houston Mesothelioma Lawyer at Sutliff & Stout
Sutliff & Stout will provide you a free and confidential case review which will provide insight into your claim and how to move forward with the process. An experienced lawyer can help you gather vital information to support your claim such as work history with evidence of asbestos exposure and medical records.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, Sutliff & Stout will help you research and investigate your claim and will represent you throughout the entire process. If you would like to discuss your mesothelioma or wrongful death claim feel free to give us a call at (713) 987-7111 or contact us online.