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Asbestos Exposure Symptoms & Diagnosis 

David C. Thompson, P.C.  Nov. 3, 2022

Exposure to asbestos and other toxic chemicals can result in severe injuries and health issues for the victims, including medical complications such as asbestosis, mesothelioma, and lung cancer. Sometimes, asbestos exposure occurs in minor doses over a prolonged period. Hence, the victim may not know the extent of their injuries and damages until after several years or even decades. An experienced North Dakota personal injury attorney can enlighten you about the symptoms and diagnosis of asbestos exposure and explore your options to recover damages. 

With over 40 years of extensive experience, Attorney David C. Thompson has the diligence and resources to guide, support, and represent victims of asbestos exposure in their injury cases. As your legal counsel, he will review every aspect of your case, fight compassionately for your legal rights, and help pursue the maximum available compensation for your injuries and damages. 

The firm is proud to serve clients in Grand Forks and surrounding communities throughout the state of North Dakota, including Minot, Bismarck, and Fargo. Call him today to get the support and skilled representation you need. 

Symptoms of Asbestos Exposure  

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral which is often used widely in the manufacture of industrial and commercial products such as floor tiles, cement, automotive parts, building materials, and insulation items. Prolonged exposure to asbestos fibers may result in shortness of breath, lung tissue scarring, and other lung diseases. Here are some common signs and symptoms of asbestos exposure: 

  • A persistent, dry cough 

  • Recurring chest pain 

  • Shortness of breath 

  • Chest tightness 

  • Dry and crackling sounds in the lungs when breathing 

  • Fingertips and toes look abnormally rounder and wider 

Who is At Risk of Asbestos Exposure? 

Many individuals are exposed to asbestos through their occupations. Here are some occupations and employees that have increased risks of asbestos exposure: 

  • Asbestos mining and milling 

  • Fabric milling 

  • Shipbuilding and naval service 

  • Electricians 

  • Railway construction 

  • Construction and building trades 

  • Automobile industry 

  • Aircraft mechanics 

  • Firefighters 

  • Refinery and mill workers 

  • Building demolition 

  • Building construction workers 

  • Manufacture of flooring, chemicals, rubber, or plastics 

Medical complications from asbestos exposure may not manifest until after many years from the initial exposure. Hence, getting a proper diagnosis is crucial to detect the symptoms of asbestos exposure early and get adequate medical treatment. 

Diagnosing Asbestos Exposure  

Prolonged exposure to asbestos fibers can affect the lungs, so diagnosing asbestos exposure will require the physician to carefully go through the patient's medical history. Also, breathing tests, CT scans, or a chest X-ray may be performed to show the condition or scarring of the lung tissues. Using this information, the physician will determine whether the lungs are functioning properly or if the patient has been exposed to asbestos fibers. 

Is There Treatment Available?  

Unfortunately, there is currently no treatment that can completely reverse the adverse effects of asbestos exposure on the lungs. However, there are breathing treatments and medications that can help manage or improve the victim’s condition. These include: 

  • Quitting smoking or smoking cessation programs 

  • Pulmonary rehabilitation 

  • Oxygen therapy 

  • In extreme cases, surgery or a lung transplant may be recommended 

An experienced personal injury attorney can work diligently with your medical team to ensure that your health condition is properly documented and you receive the best treatment possible. 

What to Do When Injury Occurs 

When an injury occurs due to asbestos exposure, the available options to seek damages include filing a personal injury claim or seeking workers' compensation benefits. 

Workers' Compensation 

According to North Dakota worker's compensation laws, employees who are exposed to smoke, fumes, toxic, or poisonous chemicals substances are eligible to seek workers' compensation benefits. These include: 

  • Medical benefits 

  • Wage-loss benefits 

  • Permanent partial impairment benefits 

  • Return to work services 

  • Reimbursement for personal expenses 

  • Death benefits 

Personal Injury Claim 

Alternatively, you may pursue fair financial compensation for injuries suffered from asbestos exposure by filing a personal injury claim. The following damages may be recovered through an injury claim: 

  • Medical expenses, including past, ongoing, and future medical treatment 

  • Lost income and benefits 

  • Reduced quality of life 

  • Disability 

  • Expenses related to your treatment, such as traveling 

  • Compensation for pain and suffering 

  • Loss of enjoyment of life 

  • Wrongful death damages 

An experienced North Dakota asbestos exposure attorney can guide you through the process involved in filing a claim for an exposure injury, identify the liable parties, and help pursue the financial justice you deserve. 

Let David C. Thompson, P.C. Help You Seek Fair Compensation  

Asbestos exposure can cause severe injuries and damage to your lungs and overall health. You don't have to suffer the pain and financial liability all alone. Attorney David C. Thompson is poised and ready to assist and guide clients in their asbestos exposure injury cases. As your legal counsel, he will advocate for your best interests and help you recover fair financial compensation to cover your medical expenses, lost wages, future medical treatments, pain and suffering, and other potential damages. 

Contact David C. Thompson, P.C. today to schedule a case assessment with an experienced personal injury lawyer. Attorney David C. Thompson can offer you the skilled representation, support, and reliable legal guidance you need during this difficult time. The firm proudly serves clients across Grand Forks, Minot, Bismarck, Fargo, and throughout the state of North Dakota.