Are you or a family member now suffering from the vicious cancer mesothelioma because of asbestos exposure? The past employer who was careless about the environment should be held responsible and should be paying the price.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Louisiana had the highest rate of death from mesothelioma in the Southeast United States between 1999 and 2015. This is due in large part to the number of industries in Louisiana that expose their workers to asbestos, including shipbuilding, oil refineries, and chemical production. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) estimate that five Louisiana residents are diagnosed with Mesothelioma cancer every month.
Are you or someone you love one of these unfortunate victims? If so, you need an attorney who understands the disease and your right to a recovery from the employer who exposed you to deadly asbestos. You need the Louisiana mesothelioma attorneys at Neblett, Beard & Arsenault.
What Is Asbestos?
Asbestos is a term used for several different naturally occurring fibrous minerals that have been used in various products manufactured in the U.S. for over 150 years because of its heat-resistant properties. The dangers of asbestos exposure are well known; exposure to airborne particles is the only known cause of mesothelioma. The link between asbestos and mesothelioma has been recognized for decades, but the manufacturers of asbestos products failed to warn users about that link, exposing millions to deadly asbestos fibers.
The risks of asbestos exposure were first officially recognized in 1918, but despite this, the use of asbestos continued to expand in the 20th century. It was used in the manufacturing of vehicles, as insulation, and in all types of construction materials, including cement, shingles, tiles, stucco, siding, and other products. It was used to insulate pipes and boilers, as a tank lining, and in numerous applications in the shipbuilding industry.
Even today, asbestos use is not banned in the U.S., but federal regulations place restrictions on its manufacture, use and disposal, and legal protections are in place for workers who could be exposed, whether in manufacturing, removal, construction, mining, or other industries.
What Is Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is an incurable form of cancer that is linked to asbestos exposure. It can be caused by inhaling microscopic asbestos particles. Mesothelioma may take from 10 to 60 years to develop after the initial exposure to asbestos.
This aggressive cancer usually shows up in the lining of the lungs and chest cavity, but it may also occur in the tissue surrounding other organs. The two most common forms of mesothelioma are pleural mesothelioma, affecting the lungs, and peritoneal mesothelioma, affecting the heart.
A mesothelioma diagnosis is grim news; the average life expectancy after diagnosis is 12 to 21 months.
Asbestos Exposure in Louisiana
Nearly every person over the age of 40 living and working in Louisiana has been exposed to asbestos at some point because it is used in so many products. Workers in the following industries face exposure to asbestos fibers:
- Shipbuilding. Many of the materials used to build ships contained asbestos and shipbuilders would have been exposed by handling paneling, pipes, insulation, adhesives, and other materials. Workers repairing and decommissioning ships could continue to be exposed to this day. Shipyards throughout Louisiana, including Avondale, Bollinger, Higgins, and Conrad have exposed hundreds of thousands of workers to asbestos.
- Oil refineries. Because of its fire-resistant properties, asbestos use was widespread in oil refineries, including in insulation, construction materials, protective clothing, equipment, and pipes. Anyone working in a Louisiana oil refinery was likely exposed to asbestos. Companies such as BP, Amoco, Citgo, Shell, and Texaco have all had oil refineries in cities such as Shreveport, Princeton, Lake Charles, the Port of Baton Rouge, Plaquemine, and elsewhere that exposed their workers to asbestos.
- Power plants. Companies such as Southwestern Gas and Electric, Central Louisiana Electric Company, and Louisiana Electric Co-op exposed workers to asbestos fibers used as insulation for walls, pipes, generators, boilers, and other equipment for decades.
- Hurricane Katrina clean-up. Any time a building containing products made with asbestos is destroyed, the dangerous fibers are released into the air. This unfortunately happened throughout the New Orleans area in the aftermath of hurricane Katrina and, as clean-up crews cleared the wreckage, many were exposed to asbestos.
- Secondary exposure. When workers in any of the above industries returned home at the end of the day in the clothes they worked in, they inadvertently exposed their loved ones to the carcinogenic material. Wives doing laundry, children sitting in a parent’s lap, and babies crawling on the floor all could have been exposed to asbestos fibers and could develop mesothelioma many years later.
If you or a family member has been exposed to asbestos while at work, it is worth talking to a Louisiana mesothelioma lawyer at Neblett, Beard & Arsenault for a FREE, no-hassle consultation about the potential of your claim.
Please don’t hesitate to call us at (318) 561-2500 or fill out a contact form and we will get back to you within 24 hours.
Treatment for Mesothelioma
Mesothelioma victims have a longer survival rate if the cancer is detected in its early stages. Some tumors can be successfully removed. The age and health of the patient is also an important factor in recovery.
Once mesothelioma has been diagnosed, healthcare professionals must determine if the cancer has spread. Various tests, including a CT scan, PET scan, and endoscopic ultrasound are performed to determine the condition of the lungs and the other parts of the body. The extent of the cancer and how far it has spread will be the determining factor in how a case of mesothelioma is treated medically. The treatments vary, based upon where the cancer is found and the stage of the progression of the disease. Some treatment options include the following:
- Surgery to remove the cancerous area and the tissues surrounding it
- Surgery to remove part of the lung covering, lining of the chest, and outside surface of lungs
- Surgery to remove an entire lung lobe as well as the lining of the lungs, the diaphragm, and the lining of the heart
- Removal of fluid from the lung lining and chemicals used to create scar tissue in this area so that fluids can no longer build up in the area
Recent advances in medical science for the treatment of cancers may be used and mesothelioma patients may choose to seek out a clinical trial as an option. In Louisiana, Ochsner Health System’s Cancer Center is a top-notch mesothelioma treatment center.
Contact Our Louisiana Mesothelioma Attorneys
If you or a family member has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, you have limited time to take action. In Louisiana, you only have one year from the date of your diagnosis to file a claim for compensation. If you have lost a loved one to this terrible disease, you have one year from the date of his or her death to file a wrongful death claim.
Neblett, Beard & Arsenault represents mesothelioma victims throughout the state of Louisiana and can assist you immediately. We will handle all of the critical details, including access to Social Security disability benefits on an expedited basis and there is no cost to you unless we win.
Our goal is to help you navigate the legal system and protect your right to fair compensation to help you and your family moving forward.
Contact us at (318) 561-2500 today to schedule a free consultation and download of our free book, Understanding Your Rights After a Mesothelioma Diagnosis.
Frequently Asked Questions About Mesothelioma and Asbestos Exposure Claims
- What products may have asbestos in them?
- What industries come in contact with asbestos?
- Where does mesothelioma cancer occur in the human body?
- How long should a person expect to live after being diagnosed with mesothelioma?
- How long does it take for mesothelioma cancer to develop in the human body?
- What are the most common treatment options for mesothelioma patients?