Even though an asbestos warning sign was recently placed on a fence in a West Dunbartonshire, Scotland neighborhood, local teenagers are still hopping over the fence during their school lunch hour. This has neighbors...
Over $30 Billion in Trust Funds Set Aside for Asbestos Victims
Find Out What You're Owed
Asbestos companies were ordered to set up trust funds to compensate asbestos victims and their families. Contact us to find out what you’re owed, or with any questions you have.
For over 20 years we’ve been helping families like yours connect with the leading mesothelioma lawyers in their area. There are many law firms that handle mesothelioma cases, and your choices may seem overwhelming. We clear through the confusion and make sure you have information on only the top mesothelioma law firms.
We are Better Business Bureau accredited, and we pride ourselves on helping you make the right decision for you and your family.
How We Help You Find Your Mesothelioma Attorney
- We’ll send you Free Brochures from the top mesothelioma law firms in your area to help you decide which law firm is right for you. Over $30 billion is currently available in asbestos trust funds for asbestos disease victims and their families. Picking the right mesothelioma attorney is the first step in getting your share of the money available.
- We are experienced in helping asbestos victims across the country in all 50 states.
- We’re available to help answer any questions you might have. Fill out our contact form or call us toll free at 800-878-3845
The Need for Mesothelioma Lawyers
For many years the asbestos industry attempted to suppress research which linked asbestos to serious medical conditions, including mesothelioma, asbestosis, and lung cancer. Since the manufacturing and sales of asbestos products generated huge profits, makers and distributors alike made efforts to hide from the public any evidence of their products’ harmful effects on people.
Because the suppression of facts was intentional and motivated by the huge profits to be made from the manufacturing and distribution of a harmful product, victims who suffer from mesothelioma are usually entitled to significant financial compensation.
Due to the increase in the number of asbestos-related cases, many lawyers now specialize in representing those that have been diagnosed with mesothelioma and other diseases caused by asbestos. Known as asbestos or mesothelioma lawyers, these specialized attorneys concentrate almost exclusively on helping victims that have been diagnosed with asbestos cancer and other asbestos-related diseases.
Mesothelioma trust funds are funds set up by companies who have experienced an overwhelming amount of asbestos-related lawsuits and in turn, were ordered to set up financial compensation for future cases.
Today, there are over a hundred mesothelioma trust funds set up in the United States alone, and that number may grow as more and more companies face liability. According to the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO), close to $17.5 billion has already been to awarded to victims of diseases caused by exposure to asbestos. An estimated $30-40 billion is still available for future cases.
In the past, victims of mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases had to rely on lawsuits for compensation. But since many companies were ordered to set up mesothelioma trust funds, compensation to mesothelioma victims is now more readily available.
For much of the 20th Century, the various branches of the United States armed forces were among the largest users of asbestos materials. The U.S. Navy was an especially large user of asbestos-laden materials, particularly during World War II and the Korean Conflict. Large amounts of asbestos were added to the building materials used to build Navy vessels of all types to help protect them from fires. Asbestos can be found in naval ships and shore facilities built between World War II and the early stages of the Vietnam War, especially in fire-prone areas such as ships’ engineering spaces and boiler rooms. Asbestos fibers were also utilized heavily in naval shipyards.
The heavy use of asbestos in the military has led to many military veterans being unfortunately diagnosed with mesothelioma, usually decades after their exposure to asbestos. It is estimated that about 30% of all mesothelioma victims are military veterans, usually former Navy members.
Mesothelioma cancer, also known as asbestos cancer or malignant mesothelioma, is a cancer that attacks the thin lining surrounding the lungs and/or abdominal cavity. It is currently the most common form of asbestos-related disease.
Not only can the disease affect the lungs and abdomen, but mesothelioma can also affect the sac which surrounds the heart. Additionally, it can affect the testes if it develops in the tunica vaginalis. It takes decades, sometimes up to 50 years to diagnose the disease, and the first symptoms of mesothelioma are often minor and resemble those of the common cold. These initial signs of mesothelioma include coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, and body aches. Because of this, many victims go undiagnosed because they believe they are only experiencing commons ailments.
Compared to other types of cancer, mesothelioma is rare, yet because asbestos was heavily used during and after World War II, more cases are reported annually worldwide. As of 2012, about 3,000 new cases a year are diagnosed in the United States alone. The disease is diagnosed more in men than women. A study in the United Kingdom conducted by Cancer Research UK suggests that the ratio of mesothelioma cases between males and females diagnosed with the cancer is 5:1. This, however, doesn’t mean that mesothelioma cannot affect women. Scientists suggest that men more often are victims simply because they were more likely in the military or working in construction sites, asbestos mines, factories, electricity generating plants, and other places in which they were heavily exposed to asbestos.
According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), there are several strains of mesothelioma, each of which affects specific areas of the body. The most common is the type known as pleural mesothelioma and affects the pleura: the lining of the lungs and internal chest wall. The other major strain is called peritoneal mesothelioma; it affects the lining of the abdominal cavity (peritoneum) and can damage major organs there. Other areas which are susceptible to mesothelioma are the pericardium, which is the sac which surrounds the heart, and the tunica vaginalis, which surrounds the testes. However, pericardial mesotheliomas and mesotheliomas of the tunica vaginalis are extremely rare.
In addition, per ACS, there are three cell types associated with malignant mesothelioma. The most common is the epithelioid mesothelioma; it occurs in 50 – 60% of all diagnoses and it is the most responsive to medical treatment. These cells, when viewed through a microscope, appear elongated.
Sarcomatoid mesothelioma cells are the least common of the three types. Fibrous in appearance, they are found in 10 – 20% of mesothelioma cases.
Biphasic or mixed mesothelioma combine traits of both epithelioid and sarcomatoid cells. Biphasic mesothelioma is the second most common type of cell group, accounting for 30 – 40% of all cases. Because the ratio of epithelioid and sarcomatoid cells is extremely variable, biphasic mesothelioma is the hardest strain of the disease to treat.
Despite advances in oncology and general medicine, mesothelioma treatments can be difficult. Typically, there is no single treatment that can be used to fight asbestos cancer. Surgery on its own cannot excise the cancer from the lungs or abdominal cavity completely if the disease was not caught in its early stages of development. Treatment with radiation has some effects on mesothelioma, but only when it is administered along with radical surgery of the affected tissue. Radiation treatment works best when it is focused on small, hard-to-reach cancerous growths. The most effective treatment is chemotherapy, especially a variant known as Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy (HIPEC). HIPEC is a heated, sterilized chemotherapy solution which is delivered directly to the abdomen during surgery.
Other treatments for asbestos cancer include immunotherapy and multimodality therapy; the latter being a three-way combination of surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy.
Though mesothelioma is not curable, prompt treatment can extend a patient’s life expectancy by a margin of 3 to 14 years, depending on how quickly the disease is diagnosed.
If you or a loved one is a victim of an asbestos disease, you may be entitled to significant financial compensation. We’ll help you and your family get what you're owed.Get Help Now
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