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Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma Definition: Mesothelioma is a rare and aggressive cancer that affects the lining of the lungs, abdomen, and heart. It is usually caused by exposure to asbestos.

Pleural mesothelioma affects the tissue around the lungs and is the most common form of this cancer. It is typically diagnosed in people who inhaled asbestos fibers in the workplace. Other types of mesothelioma occur in the abdominal area and very rarely in the tissue around the heart.

Oncologists and specialists can offer a number of therapies that can help prolong survival and minimize symptoms and discomfort, but in most cases all types of mesothelioma are too aggressive and too far advanced at the time of diagnosis to be cured.

Specialists provide the most up-to-date care, while experienced asbestos lawyers work with patients to seek justice and compensation for the exposure that caused this terrible illness.

FREE Mesothelioma Packet includes:

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  • New treatment options
  • Veterans benefits & claims
  • File for your share of $30 billion in trust funds

– Or Call –
1-800-692-8608

Most of the approximately 3,000 cases of mesothelioma diagnosed annually can be tied to asbestos exposure. And in most cases the exposure occurred on the job. Employees who were put at risk of asbestos-related diseases like this kind of cancer never knew about the dangers until it was too late.

Leading up to the official regulation asbestos-containing materials in the 1970s, many companies used asbestos. Some of the kinds of workers who were more likely to be exposed were industrial workers, sailors and shipyard workers, construction laborers and skilled tradesmen, and miners, among many others.

Thanks to the laws that now ban most uses of asbestos, exposure to this dangerous mineral is declining. However, people are still getting diagnosed with mesothelioma now because of the cancer's long latency period. Decades can pass between exposure and symptoms that spur a diagnosis.

Medical researchers have made great improvements in diagnosing and treating mesothelioma. They are helping people live longer with it, but it is still an aggressive and deadly type of cancer. There is no cure for mesothelioma or for other asbestos illnesses.

What are the

Types of Mesothelioma?

Mesothelioma is a kind of cancer that begins with tumor growth in the cells of the mesothelium, a thin, double layer of tissue. The mesothelium lines the chest cavity, abdominal cavity, and other parts of the body.

Most cases of mesothelioma impact the pleural tissue around the lungs. This is the most common form because exposure to asbestos is typically through accidental inhalation of the fibers. Rarer are cancers of the peritoneum in the abdomen and the tissue around the heart, called the pericardium.

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Pleural Mesothelioma

The most common type of asbestos-related cancer is pleural mesothelioma, the cancer of the tissue lining of the lungs. About three-quarters of diagnosed cases are of this type because most long-term exposure to asbestos is characterized by inhalation of the fibers.

Inhaled asbestos fibers embed in the pleura where they cause tissue damage. In some people this causes mesothelioma. Symptoms include difficulty breathing, chest pains, coughing, and shortness of breath and are similar to more common diseases, like pneumonia and bronchitis. Misdiagnosis and delayed diagnosis is common.

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Pericardial Mesothelioma

This extremely rare form of mesothelioma occurs in just one percent of all diagnosed cases. Only about 200 cases have ever been described in scientific journals. The primary tumor in this type of mesothelioma begins in the part of the mesothelium that lines the heart, called the pericardium.

Because of how close the tumors are to the heart, pericardial mesothelioma is very difficult to treat. Symptoms may include chest pains, difficulty breathing, heart palpitations, fatigue, and coughing, and as with pleural cancer can be mistaken for other conditions.

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Peritoneal Mesothelioma

Peritoneal mesothelioma accounts for less than 20 percent of all diagnosed cases. It begins in the peritoneum, the lining of tissue around abdominal organs. Inhaled asbestos fibers may reach this part of the body and trigger cancer by migrating to the abdomen through the lymphatic system. Peritoneal mesothelioma may also occur after accidentally ingesting asbestos fibers.

The early symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma, which may show 20 to 50 years after first exposure to asbestos, include abdominal distension, abdominal pain, swelling or tenderness around the abdomen and constipation or diarrhea.

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Pleural Mesothelioma

The most common type of asbestos-related cancer is pleural mesothelioma, the cancer of the tissue lining of the lungs. About three-quarters of diagnosed cases are of this type because most long-term exposure to asbestos is characterized by inhalation of the fibers.

Inhaled asbestos fibers embed in the pleura where they cause tissue damage. In some people this causes mesothelioma. Symptoms include difficulty breathing, chest pains, coughing, and shortness of breath and are similar to more common diseases, like pneumonia and bronchitis. Misdiagnosis and delayed diagnosis is common.

heart-icon

Pericardial Mesothelioma

This extremely rare form of mesothelioma occurs in just one percent of all diagnosed cases. Only about 200 cases have ever been described in scientific journals. The primary tumor in this type of mesothelioma begins in the part of the mesothelium that lines the heart, called the pericardium.

Because of how close the tumors are to the heart, pericardial mesothelioma is very difficult to treat. Symptoms may include chest pains, difficulty breathing, heart palpitations, fatigue, and coughing, and as with pleural cancer can be mistaken for other conditions.

abdomen-icon

Peritoneal Mesothelioma

Peritoneal mesothelioma accounts for less than 20 percent of all diagnosed cases. It begins in the peritoneum, the lining of tissue around abdominal organs. Inhaled asbestos fibers may reach this part of the body and trigger cancer by migrating to the abdomen through the lymphatic system. Peritoneal mesothelioma may also occur after accidentally ingesting asbestos fibers.

The early symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma, which may show 20 to 50 years after first exposure to asbestos, include abdominal distension, abdominal pain, swelling or tenderness around the abdomen and constipation or diarrhea.

What are the

Symptoms of
Mesothelioma?

Symptoms

Pleural Mesothelioma

  • Shortness of breath
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Persistent, dry cough
  • Coughing up blood
  • Chest pains
  • Pain When Breathing
  • Lumps Under Skin of Chest
  • Fatigue
  • Weight Loss
  • Fever

Peritoneal Mesothelioma

  • Pain & Swelling in Abdomen
  • Feeling of Fullness
  • Weight Loss
  • Anemia
  • Fever
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Bowel Obstruction
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Fatigue

Pericardial Mesothelioma

  • Irregular Heartbeat
  • Heart Palpitations
  • Trouble Breathing
  • Heart Murmurs
  • Weight Loss
  • Shortness of Breath
  • Chest Pains
  • Fatigue
  • Coughing
  • Night Sweats
  • Fever
  • Heart Failure
  • Swelling of Lower Limbs

Most patients with mesothelioma experience mild symptoms early in the progression of the disease. They mimic symptoms of other diseases that are more common and often less serious. These include pneumonia for pleural mesothelioma symptoms or irritable bowel syndrome for peritoneal mesothelioma.

Only when mesothelioma spreads does it begin to cause more severe symptoms. It is also in later stages that the symptoms become more noticeable. They don't seem to resolve, and this is often when an individual realizes there is something more serious going on.

The later stages of mesothelioma will begin to cause more universal cancer symptoms like weight loss and fatigue, fever, and persistent pain, swelling, or feelings of fullness.

Symptoms

Pleural Mesothelioma

  • Shortness of Breath
  • Trouble Swallowing
  • Persistent, Dry Cough
  • Coughing up Blood
  • Chest Pains
  • Pain When Breathing
  • Lumps Under Skin of Chest
  • Fatigue
  • Weight Loss
  • Fever

Peritoneal Mesothelioma

  • Pain & Swelling in Abdomen
  • Feeling of Fullness
  • Weight Loss
  • Anemia
  • Fever
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Bowel Obstruction
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Fatigue

Pericardial Mesothelioma

  • Irregular Heartbeat
  • Heart Palpitations
  • Trouble Breathing
  • Heart Murmurs
  • Weight Loss
  • Shortness of Breath
  • Chest Pains
  • Fatigue
  • Coughing
  • Night Sweats
  • Fever
  • Heart Failure
  • Swelling of Lower Limbs

How is

Mesothelioma Diagnosed?

Physical Examination

The first step in diagnosing any type of mesothelioma is a thorough physical examination. The characteristic symptoms of mesothelioma, especially the early ones, are not unique to it. A full exam is necessary to rule out any other illnesses with similar symptoms.

A general practitioner or internist will examine a patient and test for certain conditions, while also taking a medical history. In addition to symptoms, known exposure to asbestos is an important indicator to look for signs of cancer.

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Imaging Scans

The next step after an exam is to have an imaging scan done to look for abnormal tissue or growths. An X-ray is useful to rule out pneumonia and other issues, while MRIs and CT scans can provide a more detailed look at soft tissues. These can help doctors find areas of abnormalities that may be cancerous.

A scan may rule out another illness, but if an abnormality suggestive of cancer is discovered, the patient will usually be referred to an oncologist. This is a cancer specialist who will likely recommend a biopsy for a firm diagnosis.

Biopsy

To perform a biopsy, a doctor needs to take a sample of cells. A pathologist will examine the sample under a microscope to see if the cells are malignant, or cancerous. Patients may have fluid drained from around the lungs in the case of pleural symptoms or from the abdomen when there are symptoms associated with peritoneal mesothelioma.

If fluid biopsies are inconclusive, imaging scans can be used to guide a needle biopsy of a suspected tumor. This involves removing a small piece of tissue with a long needle. The tissue is then examined by a pathologist to look for abnormal cells.

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The Stages of Mesothelioma

It is important not just to diagnose cancer, but to stage it. All kinds of cancers are staged from one through four and this allows doctors to accurately describe how far along the disease has progressed and to provide the best treatment plan.

STAGE 1

Stage one mesothelioma patients have the best odds of survival. There may not be any symptoms at all for some people. Symptoms tend to be mild and may include coughing, fever, chest pains, breathing difficulties, and a general feeling of fatigue. Stage one patients have several treatment options, including aggressive surgery, and have the best overall prognosis.

STAGE 2

Stage two patients still have some chance of survival or of extending survival time. They typically experience the same symptoms as those in stage one. However, during stage two, the cancerous tumor starts to invade the chest cavity, diaphragm, or lung tissue. This makes treatment trickier and may begin to limit surgical treatment options.

STAGE 3

When a patient is diagnosed in stage three of mesothelioma, the cancer has spread more extensively throughout the chest cavity or abdomen, depending on the type. Medical care is often more geared toward palliative treatment. Extending survival time is difficult but possible. During stage 3 prognosis is generally negative, and most patients will experience severe chest pain, weight loss, night sweats, coughing, and fatigue.

STAGE 4

Stage four, the most advanced stage of mesothelioma, is diagnosed when the cancer has metastasized, or spread to distant parts of the body. There are limited treatment options at this stage, and most strategies are designed to keep the patient comfortable and to extend life expectancy, if possible or if the patient chooses.

Stage one mesothelioma patients have the best odds of survival. There may not be any symptoms at all for some people. Symptoms tend to be mild and may include coughing, fever, chest pains, breathing difficulties, and a general feeling of fatigue. Stage one patients have several treatment options, including aggressive surgery, and have the best overall prognosis.

Stage two patients still have some chance of survival or of extending survival time. They typically experience the same symptoms as those in stage one. However, during stage two, the cancerous tumor starts to invade the chest cavity, diaphragm, or lung tissue. This makes treatment trickier and may begin to limit surgical treatment options.

When a patient is diagnosed in stage three of mesothelioma, the cancer has spread more extensively throughout the chest cavity or abdomen, depending on the type. Medical care is often more geared toward palliative treatment. Extending survival time is difficult but possible. During stage 3 prognosis is generally negative, and most patients will experience severe chest pain, weight loss, night sweats, coughing, and fatigue.

Stage four, the most advanced stage of mesothelioma, is diagnosed when the cancer has metastasized, or spread to distant parts of the body. There are limited treatment options at this stage, and most strategies are designed to keep the patient comfortable and to extend life expectancy, if possible or if the patient chooses.

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Free consultation with Dave, our Patient Advocate, on how to quickly recover compensation from the $30 Billion Asbestos Trusts, Veteran Benefits, and by Filing Legal Claims.

Free consultation with Dave, our Patient Advocate, on how to quickly recover compensation from the $30 Billion Asbestos Trusts, Veteran Benefits, and by Filing Legal Claims.

or
For Quicker Compensation for medical and other expenses - call Dave today! Get started now on recovering from the $30 Billion in Asbestos Trusts Funds, VA Benefits and/or Filing a Legal Claim.

For Quicker Compensation for medical and other expenses - call Dave today!
Get started now on recovering from the $30 Billion in Asbestos Trusts Funds, VA Benefits and/or Filing a Legal Claim.

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What are the options for

Mesothelioma Treatment?

Treatment for mesothelioma varies and depends on the needs, limitations, and preferences of each patient. Plans for care also depend on the type and stage of the cancer. The more aggressive the treatment, the more likely a patient is to have an extended life expectancy. But only in rare cases can treatment cure mesothelioma.

Because this cancer is aggressive and often diagnosed in the later stages, treatment options may be limited. These typically include some combination of surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy. For patients with advanced cancer, doctors tend to plan treatment that is more palliative in nature.

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Surgical Treatment

A goal of surgical treatment for mesothelioma is to remove as much of the cancerous tissue as possible. Treatment plans often combine surgery with chemotherapy and radiation to eliminate those cancer cells that the surgeon could not reach after surgery. They can also be used before surgery to shrink tumors and make them easier to excise.

Not all patients are eligible for surgery, but for those who are it may extend life expectancy. In rare cases it may be curative. For other patients, surgery can be used to relieve symptoms and as a part of palliative care.

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Chemotherapy

This is the most common treatment used for patients with mesothelioma. Chemotherapy uses drugs that target and destroy fast-growing cells and are usually administered intravenously. The drugs circulate through the body and target and kill cancer cells in tumors.

A newer treatment for peritoneal mesothelioma uses a heated solution of chemotherapy drugs circulated only in the abdominal cavity. Chemotherapy is often used after surgical treatment to destroy remaining cancer cells.

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Radiation Therapy

Radiation treatment is the use of high-energy beams of particles to target and destroy tumors and cancer cells. The traditional way of administering radiation is externally, by aiming the beam at the location of the tumor. This requires penetrating and damaging healthy tissue.

To minimize damage to healthy tissues and side effects, and to target tumors more directly, some patients may be able to undergo internal radiation therapy. Radiation is usually used in conjunction with chemotherapy and surgical treatments.

Surgical Treatment

A goal of surgical treatment for mesothelioma is to remove as much of the cancerous tissue as possible. Treatment plans often combine surgery with chemotherapy and radiation to eliminate those cancer cells that the surgeon could not reach after surgery. They can also be used before surgery to shrink tumors and make them easier to excise.

Not all patients are eligible for surgery, but for those who are it may extend life expectancy. In rare cases it may be curative. For other patients, surgery can be used to relieve symptoms and as a part of palliative care.

Chemotherapy

This is the most common treatment used for patients with mesothelioma. Chemotherapy uses drugs that target and destroy fast-growing cells and are usually administered intravenously. The drugs circulate through the body and target and kill cancer cells in tumors.

A newer treatment for peritoneal mesothelioma uses a heated solution of chemotherapy drugs circulated only in the abdominal cavity. Chemotherapy is often used after surgical treatment to destroy remaining cancer cells.

Radiation Therapy

Radiation treatment is the use of high-energy beams of particles to target and destroy tumors and cancer cells. The traditional way of administering radiation is externally, by aiming the beam at the location of the tumor. This requires penetrating and damaging healthy tissue.

To minimize damage to healthy tissues and side effects, and to target tumors more directly, some patients may be able to undergo internal radiation therapy. Radiation is usually used in conjunction with chemotherapy and surgical treatments.

Some patients also benefit from using complementary treatments addition to traditional therapies. Acupuncture, massage therapy, diet and nutrition, yoga and meditation, gentle exercise, and aromatherapy, help many patients get relief from pain, more energy, and stress and anxiety relief.

A focus on diet and nutrition is one of the best complementary therapies for cancer patients. Maintaining a healthy diet while undergoing treatment is important but can be difficult. Chemotherapy and other treatments may cause nausea and pain, making it difficult to eat or drink. Patients should consider working with a dietician or nutritionist to maintain good health.

What is the

Prognosis for Mesothelioma Patients?

The prognosis given for any individual is largely based on the averages for the stage of the cancer diagnosed. It also depends on a person's age and overall health. Patients diagnosed with earlier stage mesothelioma and those that are younger and in better health may have a more positive prognosis.

Statistics collected by researchers help give a general picture of survival time for patients with a mesothelioma diagnosis. The average survival time based on past cases is 18 months after diagnosis. Some patients survive longer by benefitting from the best treatments and specialists and from having been diagnosed early.

A prognosis also depends on the type of mesothelioma. Peritoneal patients have better survival rates than those with pleural mesothelioma.

The best prognosis for pleural mesothelioma patients is given when surgery is a treatment option. Aggressive surgeries like pleurectomy/decortication or extrapleural pneumonectomy, which remove a substantial amount of lung tissue, can extend life significantly but are also risky.

How do I find

the Best Doctor?

Start with your family doctor or general practitioner if you experience symptoms that trouble you. Your doctor can rule out other common illnesses and help you select specialists. But don't hesitate to seek a second opinion if you are worried your doctor isn't taking your concerns seriously.

If you do get diagnosed with mesothelioma, find a specialist. This is a rare type of cancer and even an oncologist specializing in cancer may never have worked with a mesothelioma patient. A mesothelioma specialist can provide the best care and typically works with other specialists, like surgeons and radiologists.

How do I find the best

Treatment Facility?

Many specialists in mesothelioma work as part of a multi-disciplinary team at a specialty treatment center. These may be focused on cancer generally, but some specialize specifically in mesothelioma diagnosis, treatment, and research.

Accessing a specialty treatment center may require travel, but it is the best way to ensure you get the highest quality care and the most cutting-edge treatments. If at all possible, choose a facility that specializes in mesothelioma as soon as you get a diagnosis or if you suspect you may have this kind of cancer.

A good place to start your search is with the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The NCI has named several facilities throughout the country as Designated Cancer Centers, many of which employ mesothelioma specialists.

Are there

Clinical Trials for Mesothelioma?

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clinical_trials_mobile

Designated Cancer Centers and other mesothelioma specialty facilities are likely to have access to clinical trials. These are studies with patients and unapproved medications or other therapies. For an aggressive cancer like mesothelioma, with no cure, clinical trials can be a ray of hope for patients. Your specialist can help you determine if you are eligible for any trials.

What are my options

Paying For Mesothelioma Treatment?

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Treatment for mesothelioma is costly. Take advantage of any resources available if you have been impacted by this disease. These include both financial and legal actions.

In many cases, the treatment that is best for your particular case may not be fully funded by your insurance coverage, and for those patients without medical insurance the financial impact can be even more devastating.

Alternatives to relying on insurance coverage include funding from nonprofit advocacy groups and charities. Patients can also consider lawsuits, settlements, and trust funds set up by employers who exposed them to asbestos in the workplace.

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What is the

Mesothelioma Trust Fund?

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Mesothelioma or asbestos trust funds are financial resources for people who got sick after being exposed to asbestos on the job. These funds were established by companies that were responsible for asbestos injuries to their employees. They were forced to file for bankruptcy after facing lawsuits and created these funds to compensate victims as part of the process.

If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma and are not sure where you may have been exposed, it was likely on the job. You may qualify for compensation from an established trust fund.

Getting Benefits for

Veterans with Mesothelioma

Asbestos in the Navy

U.S. veterans have some of the highest rates of mesothelioma, but U.S. Navy veterans receive more asbestos-related diagnoses than any other group. Asbestos was used extensively on all types of ships in the navy for decades, beginning in the 1930s. Working around and living with asbestos materials, especially in the confined and poorly-ventilated spaces of ships put these veterans at the greatest risk of asbestos exposure and later illnesses.

Learn More    

Asbestos in the Marine Corps

Many Marine Corps veterans were exposed to asbestos through time spent on Navy ships. The U.S. Naval fleet has long supported and transported the men and women of the Marine Corps. These ships were made with asbestos in nearly every component, increasing exposure risks for this branch of the military. After serving their country, many Marine veterans were diagnosed with mesothelioma and other asbestos-related illnesses.

Learn More    

Asbestos in the Army

Veterans who served in the U.S. Army were put their lives on the line in many ways, but the risk of exposure to asbestos was preventable. These men and women spent time in military installations, bases, and vehicles that were constructed with asbestos. Some veterans even worked directly with asbestos and many were later diagnosed with mesothelioma.

Learn More    

Asbestos in the Air Force

Asbestos use in ships, airplanes, bases, vehicles, and all types of military buildings put all veterans at risk, including those that served in the Air Force. Engines and brake systems in planes contained asbestos to insulate and protect against friction and overheating. This use, as well as the use of asbestos in many other places, caused too many of these veterans to develop mesothelioma, asbestos, or lung cancer decades after serving their countries.

Learn More    

Asbestos in the Coast Guard

The use of asbestos in ships was common practice for many decades and Coast Guard ships were no exception. Asbestos in Coast Guard vessels, in the shipyards where they worked and repaired ships, and in buildings led to numerous cases of dangerous exposure. Many of these men and women who served in the Coast Guard were later diagnosed with mesothelioma and other asbestos illnesses.

Learn More    

Mesothelioma patients who were exposed to asbestos as a result of service in the United States military may be eligible for benefits to help cover treatment and other expenses.

Veterans are a special group at risk for mesothelioma because of heavy use of asbestos in barracks, equipment, vehicles, and ships. Asbestos use in the military peaked between 1935 and 1975 and was most common in the U.S. Navy. Many veterans die every year from exposure to asbestos.

Veterans with an honorable discharge and who were exposed to asbestos during service have access to VA benefits if that exposure resulted in disease. Veterans may be able to access disability compensation, dependency and indemnity compensation, and health care.

Applying for VA benefits can be complicated and confusing. It's strongly recommended that you rely on an experienced attorney for guidance through the process. You may also be able to file a lawsuit against the manufacturers of the asbestos-containing materials you used during your service.

Asbestos in the Navy

U.S. veterans have some of the highest rates of mesothelioma, but U.S. Navy veterans receive more asbestos-related diagnoses than any other group. Asbestos was used extensively on all types of ships in the navy for decades, beginning in the 1930s. Working around and living with asbestos materials, especially in the confined and poorly-ventilated spaces of ships put these veterans at the greatest risk of asbestos exposure and later illnesses.

Learn More    

Asbestos in the Marine Corps

Many Marine Corps veterans were exposed to asbestos through time spent on Navy ships. The U.S. Naval fleet has long supported and transported the men and women of the Marine Corps. These ships were made with asbestos in nearly every component, increasing exposure risks for this branch of the military. After serving their country, many Marine veterans were diagnosed with mesothelioma and other asbestos-related illnesses.

Learn More    

Asbestos in the Army

Veterans who served in the U.S. Army were put their lives on the line in many ways, but the risk of exposure to asbestos was preventable. These men and women spent time in military installations, bases, and vehicles that were constructed with asbestos. Some veterans even worked directly with asbestos and many were later diagnosed with mesothelioma.

Learn More    

Asbestos in the Air Force

Asbestos use in ships, airplanes, bases, vehicles, and all types of military buildings put all veterans at risk, including those that served in the Air Force. Engines and brake systems in planes contained asbestos to insulate and protect against friction and overheating. This use, as well as the use of asbestos in many other places, caused too many of these veterans to develop mesothelioma, asbestos, or lung cancer decades after serving their countries.

Learn More    

Asbestos in the Coast Guard

The use of asbestos in ships was common practice for many decades and Coast Guard ships were no exception. Asbestos in Coast Guard vessels, in the shipyards where they worked and repaired ships, and in buildings led to numerous cases of dangerous exposure. Many of these men and women who served in the Coast Guard were later diagnosed with mesothelioma and other asbestos illnesses.

Learn More    

How Do I Find the

Best Mesothelioma Lawyer?

If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease, treatment is your top priority. But you may also need financial assistance. Your options include filing a lawsuit and filing a claim with an asbestos trust. Compensation can help cover medical expenses, lost wages, travel costs for treatment, and other expenses.

When employers and manufacturers failed to notify workers of asbestos risks and protect them from exposure, they became liable for resulting illnesses. A lawyer experienced with asbestos cases can help you determine your rights and what legal steps you can take to seek compensation.

Finding the right lawyer is important. You need someone with both experience and compassion. Look for an attorney or law firm with experience handling asbestos cases and winning compensation for victims. Ask questions and for evidence of past wins before hiring a lawyer. And above all, be sure you feel comfortable working with the lawyer you choose and that he or she will devote time and effort to your case.

paying-treatment_optimized

If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease, treatment is your top priority. But you may also need financial assistance. Your options include filing a lawsuit and filing a claim with an asbestos trust. Compensation can help cover medical expenses, lost wages, travel costs for treatment, and other expenses.

When employers and manufacturers failed to notify workers of asbestos risks and protect them from exposure, they became liable for resulting illnesses. A lawyer experienced with asbestos cases can help you determine your rights and what legal steps you can take to seek compensation.

Finding the right lawyer is important. You need someone with both experience and compassion. Look for an attorney or law firm with experience handling asbestos cases and winning compensation for victims. Ask questions and for evidence of past wins before hiring a lawyer. And above all, be sure you feel comfortable working with the lawyer you choose and that he or she will devote time and effort to your case.

Can’t Afford a Lawyer?

Most people undergoing expensive mesothelioma treatments aren’t in the position to hire a high-priced mesothelioma attorney. But, what many patients don't realize is that reputable, experienced lawyers in these kinds of cases never charge anything up front.

Instead, they work with you on a contingency-based payment plan. A contingency payment plan means that you pay nothing at all until you win your case. Once you win your case, your lawyer takes a certain percentage of your compensation.

Be sure to do your research on lawyer fees before retaining legal help. Lawyer fees vary, so to avoid any surprises after you’ve won your case, make sure you understand exactly what an attorney charges before deciding on which one is right for you.

Will I Go to Trial?

In most cases, mesothelioma lawsuits end in a settlement rather than going to court and a trial. Your attorney will investigate and sort out the details of your case, provide proof of your injuries to the defense, and help negotiate a settlement amount on your behalf. Only if an agreement cannot be reached by both sides will your case go to trial.

In rare instances when both parties can’t agree on a settlement, the case will go to trial. If you feel too weak or ill to stand trial, accommodations are possible. For example, some plaintiffs have given their testimony via video from the comfort of their home. Most of the hard work in a trial is done by your legal team. They will make your case on your behalf in front of a judge and jury.

Can’t Afford a Lawyer?

Most people undergoing expensive mesothelioma treatments aren’t in the position to hire a high-priced mesothelioma attorney. But, what many patients don't realize is that reputable, experienced lawyers in these kinds of cases never charge anything up front.

Instead, they work with you on a contingency-based payment plan. A contingency payment plan means that you pay nothing at all until you win your case. Once you win your case, your lawyer takes a certain percentage of your compensation.

Be sure to do your research on lawyer fees before retaining legal help. Lawyer fees vary, so to avoid any surprises after you’ve won your case, make sure you understand exactly what an attorney charges before deciding on which one is right for you.

Will I Go to Trial?

In most cases, mesothelioma lawsuits end in settlements rather than going to court and a trial. Your attorney will investigate and sort out the details of your case, provide proof of your injuries to the defense, and help negotiate a settlement amount on your behalf. Only if an agreement cannot be reached by both sides will your case go to trial.

In rare instances when both parties fail to agree on a settlement, the case will go to trial. If you feel too sick to be in court, accommodations are possible. For example, some plaintiffs have given their testimony via video from the comfort of their home. Most of the hard work in a trial is done by your legal team. They will make your case on your behalf in front of a judge and jury.

Page edited by Dave Foster

support_staff
Dave has been a mesothelioma Patient Advocate for over 10 years. He consistently attends all major national and international mesothelioma meetings. In doing so, he is able to stay on top of the latest treatments, clinical trials, and research results. He also personally meets with mesothelioma patients and their families and connects them with the best medical specialists and legal representatives available. Connect with Patient Advocate Dave Foster
Sources
  1. Mayo Clinic. (n.d.). Mesothelioma - Symptoms and Causes.
    Retrieved from: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/mesothelioma/symptoms-causes/syc-20375022
  2. National Institutes of Health. National Cancer Institute. (2018, July 30). Malignant Mesothelioma Symptoms, Tests, Prognosis, and Stages (PDQ) - Patient Version.
    Retrieved from: https://www.cancer.gov/types/mesothelioma/patient/about-mesothelioma-pdq
  3. American Cancer Society. (2015, September 15). Asbestos and Cancer Risk.
    Retrieved from: https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancer-causes/asbestos.html

Where can I

Get Additional Help?

For over 15 years, we’ve provided the best FREE resources to mesothelioma patients and loved ones. Our resources include information on the leading treatment options and best doctors in your area; lessons learned from survivors; claims and benefits specifically for Veterans; and how to access your share of billions of dollars in trust fund money.

FREE Mesothelioma Packet includes:

101facts-focus-book
  • New Treatment Options
  • Veteran‘s Benefits & Claims
  • $30 Billion Asbestos Trust Fund Information

– Or Call –
1-800-692-8608

Where can I

Get Additional Help?

For over 15 years, we’ve provided the best FREE resources to mesothelioma patients and loved ones. Our resources include information on the leading treatment options and best doctors in your area; lessons learned from survivors; claims and benefits specifically for Veterans; and how to access your share of billions of dollars in trust fund money.

FREE Mesothelioma Packet includes:

101facts-focus-book
  • New Treatment Options
  • Veteran‘s Benefits & Claims
  • $30 Billion Asbestos Trust Fund Information

– Or Call –
1-800-692-8608

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$30 Billion Asbestos Trusts
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