Asbestosis & Pleural Plaques
experienced Connecticut Asbestos attorney
A diagnosis of asbestosis or pleural plaques is frightening. You’ll need an experienced asbestos attorney to help you navigate what lies ahead. Attorney Lawyer Twillie will see to it that you receive both excellent legal and medical attention.
Asbestosis is a chronic lung disease caused by inhaling asbestos fibers. Prolonged exposure to these fibers causes lung tissue scarring and shortness of breath.
Asbestosis symptoms can range from mild to severe. Asbestosis symptoms don’t usually appear until long after your exposure to asbestos.
Most victim’s exposure to asbestos took place before the government began regulating asbestos in the 1970s.
Presently, there is no cure for asbestosis. Current treatment options only focus on relieving your symptoms, not curing you. Common asbestosis symptoms include:
- Shortness of breath;
- A persistent, dry cough;
- Loss of appetite with weight loss;
- Fingertips and toes appearing wider and rounder than normal (clubbing); and
- Chest tightness or pain.
If you have asbestosis you have an increased risk of developing lung cancer, especially if you smoke or have a history of smoking.
Pleural plaques are deposits of hyalinized collagen fibers in the parietal pleura. They occur because of asbestos exposure and usually aren’t visible until twenty or more years after the exposure took place.
Pleural Plaque symptoms include: breathlessness, a cough or pain, or a “grating” sensation when you breath.
In the 19th and 20th century, asbestos was regularly used as building material. In fact, asbestos was widely used in naval ships as well as piping in military buildings. Oftentimes, boiler rooms, mess halls, and sleeping quarters contained asbestos materials.
Military veterans serving between the 1930’s and 1980’s are at an increased risk of developing asbestos-related cancers. That being said, Navy veterans have an increased risk of exposure to asbestos over the other military branches.
Asbestos was extremely popular in both the military and private sector due to its heat resistance capabilities. Because of the Navy’s concern for preventing fires at sea, they built ships with lots of asbestos. Consequently, you could often find asbestos below decks in the pipe lagging, and around boilers.
Connecticut had several military bases including the Submarine Base in New London. For many years New London was the Navy’s primary base on the east coast. Therefore, asbestos exposure for veterans in Connecticut was very common.
Construction & Contract Workers
Many homes and buildings built before the 1979 national ban on the use of asbestos contain this deadly material. Asbestos was widely used in construction because of its insulation and sound proofing properties. Construction workers used many asbestos containing products, exposing them to high concentrations of it. Many of these workers have now received a diagnosis of asbestosis and pleural plaques. Homes and buildings built before the ban on asbestos still may contain the material. Therefore, contractors and construction workers who renovate homes built before 1979 are still at risk for asbestos exposure.
Even brief exposure to asbestos can lead to the development of mesothelioma within the body. As the amount of exposure increases, so does the risk of mesothelioma. Call attorney Lawyer A. Twillie II today to start receiving compensation for your illness!
Mechanics, Iron Workers & Shipbuilders
Routinely working on clutch facings, brake shoes, and put mechanics at risk for asbestos diseases. Mechanics faced exposure to dangerous levels of asbestos for many years. Exposure happens at service stations, car dealerships, repair shops, and garages with confined work spaces where the fibers linger.
Asbestos was regularly used by brake and clutch manufacturers because of its low cost, as well as its excellent friction and fire-resistant properties. Suppliers shipped asbestos containing products to major auto plants, aftermarket distributors and small repair shops. Products made with asbestos can release short chrysotile fibers during the installation, repair and replacement of brake systems.
Some brakes are still made with asbestos, only in smaller quantities than in the past . As the pads and linings break down, asbestos fibers go airborne. Once airborne, workers unknowingly inhale these dangerous fibers.
Common high risk duties for auto mechanics include “blowing out” brake surfaces with high pressure air hoses and “grinding” brake shoes.
Iron workers help build bridges, skyscrapers, tunnels, dams, hospitals and factories. Their work is hard, time-sensitive, intensive, and oftentimes performed in the bitter cold or sweltering heat.
Unfortunately, many iron workers face asbestos exposure on the job. This exposure later results in asbestosis and pleural plaques diagnosis.
Iron worker exposure to asbestos happens in many different ways. For example, metal girders, used in the majority of construction projects as framework for buildings, often contained asbestos. When piercing these girders with rivets they released asbestos fibers into the air.
More lethal than metal girders was the asbestos paint sprayed on iron beams to increase their melt-resistance temperature. This protective technique for the girders was a routine practice through the 1970s, before the dangers of asbestos were publicly understood. Asbestos paint was not only inhaled by painters, but other iron workers also. Winds on the construction site often carried the asbestos far from the original spray location.
Iron workers usually wore protective clothing, including gloves, aprons, pants and vests, made from asbestos. Once that gear begins to break down, asbestos fibers release in the air. These fibers also lodged in clothing and were later inhaled by family members.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates there are approximately 58,100 iron and steel workers in the United States. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) limits the amount of asbestos used in workplaces to prevent exposure. However, there are many older buildings and products still out there constructed before the dangers of asbestos were fully understood. Men and women in the remodeling and retro-fitting trades must use extreme caution when working to avoid asbestos exposure.
Asbestos has incredible insulating and heat-shielding capabilities. These properties and products are invaluable to shipbuilders. Asbestos covered boilers, hot water pipes, reactors, furnaces, steam pipes and incinerators in order to contain the heat used to power ships. With its widespread use, it’s no surprise that shipbuilders and ship-fitters would have regular contact with this deadly toxin. Asbestos dust collected in poorly ventilated areas and inhaled by unsuspecting victims onboard. Ships damaged in battle and brought to shipyards for repairs created more opportunity for workers to touch and breathe asbestos.
A lot of 19th and 20th century railroad equipment contains asbestos because of its ability to insulate and soundproof rail cars. Although asbestos is no longer used in the construction of rail road materials, people who worked in this industry may still be at risk. You were likely exposed to asbestos especially if you did brake inspections or track and signal repair. Call attorney Twillie today at L.A. LAW if you believe you’ve been exposed. Remember, in most cases symptoms won’t present themselves until 20 to 50 years after being exposed to asbestos.
To speak with an experienced Asbestosis and Pleural Plaques attorney, call L.A. LAW at (844) 438-5252 or send me an email today. Get a proven and dedicated Connecticut lawyer on your side! Your consultation with us is Free, and since we work on a contingency fee basis, you don’t pay us anything unless we win your case. If you can’t come to us, we will come to you.