Mesothelioma is a well-known disease for many, and is often times associated with work in an industrial setting. As more and more studies are being done about how this disease impacts a person’s health, more legal cases for damages and medical care are beginning to surface.
This danger of illness is well-known, and often expected of workers in an industrial environment, but what about their families? While ignored for years, it is now accepted that secondary Mesothelioma is a real and serious threat to family members, and that exposure is easier, and deadlier, than many people have believed.
How did secondary exposure commonly occur?
In most industrial settings, there were not places for workers to clean off before coming home. This means that the same contaminants they were breathing and working in while on the job were stuck to their clothing, skin, and hair. These materials did not come off easily, but did tend to contaminate even the air around the workers long after they left their jobs.
Many wives of patients of Mesothelioma are also victims of the disease, as they were not only exposed to their husbands when they came home, but often times handled their clothing. This constant exposure was toxic, and has been proven in recent studies to be just as dangerous as direct asbestos exposure in an industrial setting.
Wives are not alone in this unintended exposure. As fathers would come home and be greeted by their children, the contaminants could easily spread. Even if the children didn’t come into direct contact with the workers, the asbestos particles that cause Mesothelioma can still detach from clothing and become airborne.
In other words, just being in the same house with someone who was exposed can mean that a person with no industrial exposure at all could still suffer the same crippling symptoms of Mesothelioma. In fact, secondary Mesothelioma has been proven to be just as toxic and deadly as having had primary exposure.
Lack of Prevention
For years, employers didn’t fully realize what their actions were doing. Even the ones that did realize there were unpleasant after-effects tended to keep quiet about it, and just about no one suspected that Mesothelioma would happen to the families of the exposed. In fact, it has only been recently that people have made the connection between second-hand exposure and the disease striking loved ones of victims.
Companies that forced their workers to perform in hazardous environments not only didn’t bother with cleaning their employees off, they never provided them with the necessary protective gear needed to prevent Mesothelioma. Because of this blatant negligence, we are still seeing the effects of this crippling disease decades after the knowledge that asbestos exposure was deadly. In fact, as more and more family members are realizing the risks, the cases being reported have actually gone up.
As the cause of secondary Mesothelioma has been established, wives and children related to exposed workers now have legal right to damages for their disease. These damages are designed to help with medical care and medications, and are becoming something awarded more and more by the courts.
If you suspect you have secondary Mesothelioma, then contact your doctor and your attorney immediately. You may have multiple options for care, including lawsuit settlements and funds set up for victims of this horrible illness.
Exposure can happen in many different ways, and sometimes, the victims of Mesothelioma don’t even realize what is going on until it’s too late. If you suspect that you have Mesothelioma due to contact with someone who was exposed to asbestos, don’t delay. Contact your doctor, and speak with a knowledgeable attorney to find out your rights.