Mesothelioma is a form of cancer which is mainly associated with asbestos exposure. The cancer itself normally forms in the lining covering the lung called the pleura (pleural mesothelioma) or in the diaphragm (peritoneal mesothelioma). When it comes to mesothelioma there is no known safe level of exposure to asbestos that will prevent a risk of this disease. Railroad workers of all crafts are at risk for developing mesothelioma. The Moody Law Firm, Inc. has represented mesothelioma victims across this country in the railroad industry from all crafts and all of the major railroads in the United States. We have also handled claims on behalf of individuals in other industries who developed mesothelioma as well. Successful handling of a mesothelioma claim requires special knowledge, experience and understanding of this disease.
Mesothelioma is a particularly aggressive cancer which lacks an effective treatment or cure. Many times this cancer will spread to other nearby tissues and organs as well as other sites in the body as it develops. Many asbestos victims initially go to their doctors or end up in the hospital in the emergency room complaining of chest pain or shortness of breath symptoms sometimes mimic pneumonia. Upon examination and x-ray it is frequently found that they have a pleural effusion (fluid on the lung). Once this fluid is removed the individual can normally breathe better and the fluid is sent off for examination. On many occasions a doctor is unable to tell from the pleural fluid removed from the lung whether or not the fluid contains cancerous cells. On those occasions, it is necessary for the physicians to perform an open biopsy upon the lung tissue in order to extract a sample from the pleural tissue covering the lung and have that sent off for examination. Pathologists with special training who are familiar with special staining techniques can then determine if the type of cancer producing the fluid on the lung is in fact mesothelioma or some other form of cancer. A proper pathological diagnosis must be made before treatment options can be determined. Unfortunately for most mesothelioma victims the tumor has already progressed to an extent that treatment is very difficult if not nonexistent by this stage.
It is critical to obtain a deposition of the individual with mesothelioma as soon as possible after diagnosis of the disease. This is important in order to preserve their first hand testimony of their work history and exposure to asbestos products. The first thing that must be done is gather a detailed work history from the individual to identify work sites and time frames of exposure. Then a detailed analysis of the various types of asbestos products they worked around or with at each of the workplaces must be performed. Unfortunately, many mesothelioma victims may have already died before our firm is retained. In this case an investigation to identify and obtain statements from co-workers must occur as soon as possible.
Mesothelioma victims have a significantly reduced life expectancy once diagnosed with mesothelioma. There are some aggressive and promising treatments being offered to younger, healthier asbestos victims at various medical centers throughout the country and research is ongoing. Generally, radiation and traditional chemotherapy treatments are not successful at curing mesothelioma. Most treatment is mainly geared toward palliative efforts to keep the asbestos victim comfortable and provide quality of life.
Our firm has obtained millions in settlements for asbestos victims. If you or your loved one has been diagnosed with this disease we can help.