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Mesothelioma Guide For Families



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Mesothelioma Guide For Families

  1. 1. — P R E S E N T E D BY — PUTTING TOGETHER THE PIECES: A Guide for Mesothelioma Patients and Their Families AU G U S T 2 0 1 7
  2. 2. RICHARDSON, PATRICK, WESTBROOK & BRICKMAN has been on the forefront in asbestosis litigation since the late 1970s. In this white paper, we answer initial questions that mesothelioma patients and their families often ask. http://www.mesoinfocenter.com/White-Papers/ Mesothelioma-Patient-Guide.shtml AFTER A DIAGNOSIS OF MESOTHELIOMA, HOW DO YOU FIT THE PIECES TOGETHER IN THE MEDICAL AND LEGAL PUZZLE? FOR SOME patients, the source of the asbestos exposure is quite clear, based on their occupation. FOR OTHERS, it is more of a mystery.
  3. 3. MESOTHELIOMA (n.) | A rare cancer that attacks the lining of major organs – the most common type attacks the lining of the lungs. The disease is most common in older people, because it can take decades to develop. The average age at diagnosis is 69. There is no known cure, but treatment options are advancing. The only definitive cause is asbestos exposure.
  4. 4. The most common symptom of mesothelioma is: SHORTNESS OF BREATH Initially, some patients describe lingering flu- or cold-like symptoms and becoming easily winded. Once diagnosed, a treatment plan developed by a specialized team may include: Surgery Radiation Chemotherapy  A new drug Keytruda is offering extra time and improving quality of life during that time. Research continues to identify new treatments that will provide better outcomes.
  5. 5. The fibrous mineral has some unique properties: IT IS A GOOD INSULATOR because it will not burn even at extreme temperatures. IT IS FLEXIBLE can be woven and has a higher tensile strength than steel. IT WILL NOT HEAT UP OR CONDUCT ELECTRICITY when exposed to an electrical current. Some of the products that traditionally contained asbestos include gaskets, pipe insulation, cements, transite boards, drywall joint compounds and refractory products. WHY was asbestos used so widely from the 1940s into the 1980s? ? 1 2 3
  6. 6. That longer-term, heavy exposure increases the risk of developing an asbestos-related disease is not a surprise. Less known is that secondhand (laundering uniforms) and short-term exposures (a summer internship) have been shown to cause mesothelioma as well. SOME OCCUPATIONS that commonly carried asbestos exposure include:  Pipefitters  Maintenance mechanics  Plumbers and boilermakers  Machinists and auto mechanics  Electricians, construction workers and sheet metal workers  Firefighters or emergency responders exposed to asbestos-laden insulation
  7. 7.  Where did the exposure occur? SOME STARTING POINTS INCLUDE: Co-workers, spouses and family members often remember details that help complete the picture. Social Security records that list work history Military resources that may list which asbestos products were used on a vessel Requests for information from past employers to uncover what products were used
  8. 8. The law holds manufacturers responsible for dangers posed by their products that they know or should know about. It also holds companies responsible for producing unreasonably dangerous products. You may be able to seek compensation by bringing a lawsuit against a company you worked for or the manufacturer of a product. Some companies have filed bankruptcy, so it is necessary to make a claim with a trust fund set up to compensate asbestos victims. State workers’ compensation or military disability laws could also provide a remedy. How long do you have to bring a claim? It depends, but there is no time to waste.  $ 
  9. 9. HOW DO YOU DECIDE WHICH LAW FIRM TO CALL? Look for a history handling these cases. Terry Richardson, a founding partner of Richardson, Patrick, Westbrook & Brickman, was on the forefront of asbestos litigation in the early 1970s. Since that time, the attorneys of RPWB have established a legacy of protecting the rights of asbestos victims and their families. EXPERTS PLAY A VITAL ROLE PUTTING OCCUPATIONAL EXPOSURE INTO CONTEXT. Law firms focused on asbestos litigation have relationships with these experts. Respect and compassion are also necessary to ensure that legal issues do not disrupt medical care.
  10. 10. BECAUSE MESOTHELIOMA IS RARE, it is often difficult to find others who have been through a similar experience. The Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation developed MesoConnect as a way to help build a support network. The program offers connections with those who know what it is like to care for a loved one with mesothelioma. For more info, visit http://www.curemeso.org/
  11. 11. PLANNING FOR THE FUTURE requires understanding your legal rights to find out what resources might be available. This can protect your family from the financial burdens of the disease and provide a continuation of care.
  12. 12. We encourage you to contact the law firm of Richardson, Patrick, Westbrook & Brickman, LLC, to learn how we can help. CALL 843-410-3956. © 2017 Richardson, Patrick, Westbrook & Brickman, LLC  All Rights Reserved. Design and editorial services by FindLaw, part of Thomson Reuters. READ OUR WHITE PAPER Learn about the issues that arise after a mesothelioma diagnosis. The disease can quickly change life for both patients and their families. Take action right away to determine your legal rights.