Helping Workers And Families Affected By Asbestos And Mesothelioma
If you or someone you love suffers from mesothelioma in Kentucky, you need a local law firm that is respected and known for its trial results. Many law firms seeking to take your case are not located in Kentucky and simply do not understand Kentucky exposure sites, employers in the state, Kentucky law or Kentucky juries.
At Satterley & Kelley PLLC in Louisville, we have more than 20 years of experience trying asbestos and mesothelioma cases in Kentucky. As the result of our successes, which include millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements, we are known as one of the leading Kentucky law firms for mesothelioma and other asbestos-related illnesses.
Understanding The Cause Of Mesothelioma
Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer caused by direct and indirect exposure to asbestos. Mesothelioma develops from the mesothelium, a thin protective lining that covers many of the body’s vital organs. There is no known cure for mesothelioma, but early diagnosis and treatment options provide a better opportunity to fight this disease.
For over a century, workers have developed mesothelioma as the result of exposure to asbestos on the job. The harsh reality is that large corporations continue to manufacture and distribute products containing asbestos, knowing too well the dangers of exposure. This has not only put unsuspecting industrial workers in harm’s way, but also contributed to the elevated presence of asbestos in homes, schools and workplaces. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), as many as 1.3 million people in the United States go to a workplace where they are exposed to significant amounts of asbestos.
Protecting Your Rights
Our attorneys have represented victims of asbestos exposure and asbestos-related mesothelioma for over 20 years, and we have a detailed and far-reaching network of information at our disposal, including a list of job sites in Kentucky where workers were exposed to asbestos. We represent people who have developed mesothelioma, as well as family members of mesothelioma victims.
If you have any questions about your legal options, contact our firm or check out our mesothelioma FAQ page for answers to common asbestos-related questions.
Symptoms And Risk Factors Of Mesothelioma
Every year in the U.S., there are approximately 3,000 new cases of mesothelioma. This disease, which usually arises from prolonged exposure to asbestos, equally affects men and women regardless of age or profession. However, Louisville residents should know that it may take years or even decades before they are ever diagnosed with it.
Mesothelioma symptoms take about 10 to 50 years to appear. They include persistent coughing, chronic fatigue, fever and weight loss in the early stages. Symptoms in the advanced stages will differ based on the type of mesothelioma. Pleural mesothelioma, which affects the lining of the lungs, will cause patients to have difficulty swallowing, facial swelling and pain in the chest or lower back.
Pericardial mesothelioma, a much rarer form that affects the membrane of the heart, will cause irregular heart rhythm, chest pain and shortness of breath. Peritoneal mesothelioma, which affects the lining of the abdomen, can lead to stomach pain, vomiting and constipation.
Asbestos exposure is not the sole risk factor in developing mesothelioma. Zeolites, a mineral similar to asbestos, have been linked to the disease. Mutations of the BAP1 gene, exposure to the SV40 virus and exposure to radiation have also been connected to it. As for why symptoms arise so late, experts have not found a definite answer.
Mesothelioma Survival Rates Have Not Improved
Kentucky patients who have been diagnosed with Mesothelioma may be interested to learn that survival rates have not improved throughout the last few decades despite the fact that the treatments for the disease are improving. According to a study, patients with mesothelioma have a median survival rate of 15 months, which has barely changed since 1990.
There are two main types of mesothelioma, each of with have different survival rates. Pleural mesothelioma, which is mesothelioma that stats in the membrane around the lungs before spreading to major organs, has a median survival rate of 14 months. Peritoneal mesothelioma, which starts in the abdominal lining, has a median survival rate of 31 months.
Ultimately, certain mesothelioma patients have better survival rates than others due to a variety of factors. For examples, patients who are female, are under 45 years of age, were diagnosed with the first stage of the disease and have peritoneal mesothelioma are likely to live longer. Additionally, those who were treated via a combination of chemotherapy and surgery also tended to have longer survival rates. In fact, those who received a combination of treatment had a median survival rate of 23 months.
Other Asbestos Diseases
The link between asbestos and asbestosis, lung cancer and other debilitating and potentially fatal diseases has been well-established for decades. Asbestos is made up of microscopic fibers which, when inhaled, become trapped in the lungs and stay there for many years. Over time, these fibers can accumulate and lead to severe health problems such as:
- Asbestosis — A rare lung disease that occurs due to prolonged inhalation of asbestos fibers. Breathing in these fibers causes lung tissue to scar and fail to function properly. Common symptoms include shortness of breath, chest pain, severe coughing and in extreme cases, fingernail and toenail deformity and clubbing of fingers.
- Lung cancer — Inhalation of asbestos fibers has been linked to an increased risk of lung cancer. In general, the greater the exposure to and amount of asbestos, the higher the risk of lung cancer.
- Pleural plaques — These are deposits of fibrous tissue that develop in the chest cavity as a result of asbestos exposure.
- Pleural disease — This occurs when asbestos fibers that scar the lung lining are obstructive enough to cause restrictive lung disease.
If you or a loved one suffers from mesothelioma, asbestosis, lung cancer or any other asbestos-related disease, we can help. Every Satterley & Kelley PLLC lawyer is passionate about improving the lives of families harmed by asbestos. Our attorneys can provide the personal attention and experienced representation you deserve.
What to Expect After a Mesothelioma Diagnosis in Kentucky
Individuals in Kentucky or elsewhere who have peritoneal mesothelioma could live for several years with the condition. An individual patient’s prognosis depends on many factors include genetic mutations, the type of cancer cells and how advanced the condition is when a diagnosis is made. How the condition is treated can also play a role in how long a person can live with peritoneal mesothelioma. Those who can get surgery along with heated chemotherapy tend to live the longest.
Data indicates that more than 50 percent of patients who receive that type of treatment live for more than five years. However, about 60 percent of patients are diagnosed after they qualify to have surgery. Therefore, they must rely on systematic or direct chemotherapy, which can stop the disease from progressing for 11.5 months on average. Regardless of the type of therapy a person receives, gender can play a role in how long a person lives with peritoneal mesothelioma.
Men live for an average of six months, which is the same as those who don’t receive treatment at all. Women who have this condition live for an average of 13 months. Individuals who have tumors containing epithelial cells generally live longer than those who have tumors with other types of cells inside of them.
Those who receive a cancer diagnosis as a result of exposure to asbestos may be entitled to compensation. This may be true whether the exposure occurred at work or outside of work. Compensation may help to pay for lost wages, medical bills and other expenses. In a personal injury case, a person may be able to pursue punitive damages in addition to actual damages incurred. An attorney may be able to help a person obtain a favorable outcome to their case in court or through settlement talks.
Call Us Today For A Free Attorney Consultation
We are your boots on the ground if you or someone you love suffers from mesothelioma or an asbestos-related illness in Kentucky. To reach our office in Louisville, call 502-785-8758 or toll-free at 800-655-2117. You may also complete our contact form for a free initial consultation.