Is lung cancer linked to asbestos exposure?

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Yes, multiple studies link asbestos exposure to lung cancer, according to the American Cancer Society. These studies determine the following:

  • People who inhale asbestos fibers have an elevated risk of developing lung cancer.
  • All types of asbestos may increase a person’s risk of lung cancer.
  • The greater the exposure to asbestos fibers, the stronger probability of lung cancer.
  • The danger of lung cancer is higher in people who are exposed to asbestos and who also smoke.
  • Symptoms of lung cancer may not present for 15 years or more after contact with asbestos.

Typically, this cancer is a possibility for people exposed to asbestos frequently over a significant amount of time. This includes construction workers, factory workers, military veterans, and shipbuilders.

The Early Symptoms of Asbestos-Related Lung Cancer

lung_cancerLung cancer has the greatest number of cancer deaths in the United States. Each year, this disease claims more lives than cancer of the colon, breast, and prostate combined.

However, the prognosis is better for people who are diagnosed early and receive prompt medical treatment. Accordingly, it's important to see your doctor if you experience the following symptoms:

  • Coughing with or without blood
  • Chest pain or discomfort
  • Shortness of breath
  • Hoarseness or wheezing
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Frequent or chronic respiratory infections
  • Swelling in the face or neck

How Lung Cancer and Mesothelioma Differ

Both lung cancer and mesothelioma can manifest due to asbestos exposure. However, they're two distinct diseases.

In 1942, the National Cancer Institute confirmed that asbestos could cause lung cancer. By 1986, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration declared lung cancer to be the greatest risk for people who work with asbestos.

Lung cancer is caused by many things, including asbestos. It develops inside the lungs and typically appears as distinct masses with clear borderlines.

In 1909, British pathologist J.G. Adami used the term mesothelioma to describe cancer in thin tissue lining various organs, including the pleura, or the lining surrounding the lungs and thorax. In 1935, another pathologist, Steven Gloyne, made the connection between mesothelioma and occupational asbestos exposure.

Pleural mesothelioma is almost always caused by asbestos exposure. It appears as interconnected tumors in the tissue lining that don't have clear borderlines.

Financial Recovery for Asbestos-Related Lung Cancer or Mesothelioma

If you have lung cancer or mesothelioma after working with asbestos, you deserve a fair financial recovery. Our experienced asbestos injury lawyers are pleased to offer you a free consultation to discuss your legal options.

If we take your case, we'll represent you on a contingency fee basis. This means you won’t owe us any legal fees until your case is resolved. To learn more, contact us online or call us directly at 318.588.6303.

Richard J. Arsenault
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Recognized by several legal associations, Richard Arsenault has vast experience in complex litigation cases.