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Understanding Asbestosis Disease

David C. Thompson, P.C.  Aug. 3, 2023

Employees who work for asbestos mining and milling companies, railway construction, refinery, and other manufacturing plants are often exposed to inhaling asbestos fibers. Over time, the asbestos fibers may scar the person's lungs and lead to medical complications such as mesothelioma, asbestosis, or lung cancer. If you've been exposed to asbestos or diagnosed with asbestosis disease, you may be eligible to pursue fair compensation.  

Attorney David C. Thompson proudly helps individuals diagnosed with asbestosis disease in their injury claims. As a practiced North Dakota personal injury attorney, David can walk you through the claims process and attempt to recover fair financial compensation to cover your injuries and damages. The firm proudly serves clients across Grand Forks, Minot, Fargo, and Bismarck, North Dakota. 

What Is Asbestos Disease?

Asbestos disease – also known as asbestosis – is a lung disease that a person develops from prolonged inhaling of asbestos fibers and dust. When inhaled, the asbestos fibers will attack the membrane and tissues surrounding the lungs. Thus, causing them to thicken and scar (fibrosis).  

Unfortunately, the patient begins to experience breathing difficulties. Serious cases of asbestos disease may lead to severe medical problems, including lung cancer, heart failure, or even death. 

Symptoms of Asbestos Disease  

Some common signs and symptoms of asbestos disease include:  

  • Shortness of breath  

  • Chest tightness  

  • A persistent, dry cough  

  • Wheezing  

  • Recurring chest pain  

  • Fatigue or extreme tiredness  

  • Toes appear unusually wider and rounder.  

  • Swollen or clubbed fingertips  

  • Dry and crackling sounds in the lungs when breathing  

However, it may take between 20 and 30 years, or sometimes more, for these symptoms to present themselves. Once you notice any of the signs and symptoms of asbestos disease, you need to reach out to a medical provider for proper diagnosis and treatments. 

Can It Be Treated?

Unfortunately, there are currently no definitive treatments or cures for asbestos disease. Regardless, you may still be able to manage your health condition with some breathing treatments and medical procedures such as oxygen therapy, pulmonary rehabilitation, and lung transplant surgery. Also, you may consider making various lifestyle changes such as eating a healthy diet, drinking lots of water, avoiding smoking, doing regular exercises, and wearing a protective mask or respirator. 

What to Do If You Believe You Have an Asbestos Case

To catch the disease early, it is vital to keep up with timely medical examinations, chest X-rays, CT scans, and lung function tests. If you believe you have an asbestos case, you need to take the following steps, where possible:  

  • Get immediate medical treatment to manage your condition.  

  • Collect and document your work history records and physician's testimony.  

  • Document your medical records, including hospital visits, medical expenses, medical reports, doctor's appointments, therapy, and other treatments received.  

  • Document how you feel and how the asbestos case has affected your daily life and ability to work.  

  • Inform your employer or insurance provider about the asbestos case.  

  • Hire an experienced attorney to help file your claims and negotiate a fair settlement with the insurers involved.  

If you or a family member has been exposed to asbestos fiber or diagnosed with asbestosis disease, you need to get in touch with a knowledgeable asbestos exposure attorney. Your legal counsel can examine all of the surrounding facts of your case, tell you about the timeline to file a claim, and help recover your rightful financial compensation. 

Timeline & Settlement

In North Dakota, a workers' compensation claim for asbestos exposure must be filed within one year after the illness was discovered. Alternatively, you can file a personal injury claim within six years of the diagnosis. Your legal counsel will handle every legal procedure and the discovery phase.  

During discovery, your attorney will conduct interviews, research, and depositions and help build a solid case. However, most asbestos cases are often resolved through a settlement. Your attorney will handle all negotiations and communications with the insurance carrier and help you seek the financial justice you're entitled to. 

Protect Your Rights and Fight for Your Future

Discovering that you or someone close to you has been diagnosed with asbestos disease or mesothelioma can be emotional and unsettling. Unfortunately, the medical condition can be life-changing and affect every aspect of your life. However, you don't have to go through the pain all by yourself. Over the years, Attorney David C. Thompson has successfully recovered millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for clients in their asbestosis claims.  

In addition, Attorney David C. Thompson can help determine whether to file an occupational exposure, workers' compensation, or personal injury claim and attempt to pursue the maximum available compensation for your asbestos case.  

Contact David C. Thompson, P.C. today to speak with a reliable personal injury lawyer. Attorney David C. Thompson can walk you through the complicated legal procedures involved in filing asbestosis claims and pursuing damages. The firm proudly serves clients across Grand Forks, Minot, Fargo, and Bismarck, North Dakota.