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Diagnosis Mesothelioma and stethoscope on a desk.

Debunking Mesothelioma Myths 

David C. Thompson, P.C.  Jan. 11, 2023

You’ve likely heard commercials telling of the risks of long-term exposure illnesses or injuries due to asbestos. These commercials may even be pushing you to join in on a class-action lawsuit to seek compensation. While it is true that chemical exposure like this can result in illness, there are several misconceptions floating around about these medical conditions and what can be done to get the care you need. 

If you feel that you’ve been exposed to toxic chemicals like asbestos and this resulted in an adverse medical condition, you should speak with a personal injury attorney immediately to explore your options and learn about your rights. If you’re in the Grand Forks, North Dakota area, or anywhere throughout the state including Minot, Bismarck, and Fargo, contact David C. Thompson, P.C. today to schedule a consultation.  

What Is Mesothelioma?  

Mesothelioma is a type of cancer, caused by exposure to asbestos, that affects the layer of tissue surrounding all your organs. Although mesothelioma is a serious disease, it’s also quite rare. However, because it has more name recognition, people may be led to believe they have it when they actually don’t. That’s why it’s essential to get the facts if you’re at all concerned about an exposure injury.  

Common Mesothelioma Myths  

  1.  If you don’t work around asbestos, you won’t get Mesothelioma.

While it’s true that the most common way to get this disease is on the job, it can also be contracted at home. When workers, especially in fields like manufacturing, construction, or mining, are exposed to low levels of asbestos every day over a long period of time, the small particles can build up in the body and start to cause damage. If you then go home without changing your clothes or bathing, you might spread these fibers to those whom you live with. 

  1.  Asbestos is banned in the U.S. and is no longer a threat.  

Asbestos is currently banned in the U.S. from being used in any new building material or consumer products, but there is still asbestos that occurs naturally in minerals as well as products with asbestos in them that were manufactured before the ban was put in place. You’ll see this frequently with older building materials including flooring, ceiling tiles, or insulation in older buildings.  

  1.  Mesothelioma is caused by smoking.

Smoking is a cause of lung cancer, but only asbestos exposure has been proven to cause mesothelioma.  

  1.  Mesothelioma only affects the lungs.

Many people falsely assume that Mesothelioma only affects the lungs. In reality, it can affect all your internal organs. It is true that it’s contracted initially by breathing in small asbestos fibers into the lungs, but it can also move into organs such as your stomach, heart, or testicles. 

  1.  You must have long-term exposure to asbestos to develop Mesothelioma.

Even small amounts of asbestos exposure can still pose a risk to individuals. Long-term exposure may put you at a higher risk, but short-term exposure is also linked to this disease, so it's imperative that you take all necessary precautions when you think you may be exposed. 

  1.  There are no treatment options for Mesothelioma.

Just because there is currently no cure for Mesothelioma doesn’t mean there are no treatment options for those who have it. New treatment methods have increased the expected lifespan for those with the disease by as much as five to ten years.  

  1. Once you are diagnosed with Mesothelioma, you will die within the year.

Mesothelioma is an aggressive form of cancer, and unfortunately, some people will die of it within the first year of being diagnosed. Every day there is research being conducted with new treatment options such as heated chemotherapy (HIPEC) or using newer drugs. This makes it all the more important that you communicate with your doctor early and often about your care and educate yourself about your options. 

  1. Suing for Mesothelioma exposure is pointless.

If you’re interested in filing a claim for an exposure injury for Mesothelioma, you’ll always want to work with an experienced asbestos exposure attorney. Typically, personal injury claim cases like these can take months if not over a year to complete, but a skilled attorney may be able to help you speed up this timeline to get you and your family the compensation you deserve.

Your lawyer will help you gather evidence, ensure that your privacy is being protected, and in many cases, they’ll be able to reach a settlement before your case actually goes to court. Because many of these cases implicate a business for exposing its employees to toxic chemicals, they typically want to settle quickly to avoid media coverage.  

Turn to Experienced Guidance  

If you’ve recently been diagnosed with Mesothelioma and would like to speak with an attorney about your options, reach out to David C. Thompson, P.C. in Grand Forks, North Dakota.