Asbestos & Lead Poisoning
MESOTHELIOMA | LUNG CANCER | ASBESTOSIS | PLEURAL DISEASE | OTHER CANCER | MESOTHELIOMA DIAGNOSIS & TREATMENT
Occupational exposure to asbestos is known to cause several distinct types of injuries. Generally, the longer a person is exposed to asbestos dust and the greater the intensity of this exposure, the more likely that person is to develop an asbestos-related illness.
Individual susceptibility does, however, vary greatly. In other words, some people can be exposed to a great deal of asbestos over a long period of time and never develop an asbestos-related injury. On the otherhand, some people can be exposed to very little asbestos and suffer fatal asbestos related injuries.
All asbestos-related diseases have rather long latency periods (period of time between the first exposure to asbestos and the diagnosis of an asbestos-related disease) ranging from 10 years to 30, 40 or more years. Even though a person may have been exposed to asbestos many years ago, they can still develop asbestos-related injuries. This is because the human body can never entirely rid itself of ingested asbestos. The asbestos continues to do its damage to the lungs and other organs long after exposure has stopped.
Lead poisoning has been termed the “stealth disease” because of the devastating neurological damage it causes in children in small doses that do not cause outward physical signs of poisoning.
The leading medical and government authorities have concluded that children younger than four years of age are at the greatest risk for lead poisoning and its harmful effects. This is because infants in this age group have a tremendous amount of hand-to-mouth activity. They play on the floor and put their hands in their mouths. As they begin crawling and walking, they hold onto walls and window sills and then put their hands in their mouths.
When lead paint in a child’s home or on their toys begins chipping and peeling, the tiny chips and leaded dust gets on their hands and subsequently into their mouths and the poisoning process begins. Leaded paint naturally erodes to create a chalky dust and begins to chip and flake away from painted surfaces. The deteriorated leaded paint becomes part of the house dust and is inhaled by young children. The simple act of a child breathing in a leaded environment can begin the poisoning process. It is the reason why property owners and those responsible for property management and maintenance have a legal responsibility to keep their property free of chipping and peeling paint.
According to the National Center for Disease Control (CDC), lead paint is the predominant cause of childhood lead poisoning in the United States.
The treatment for childhood lead poisoning, known as chelation, historically involved a painful hospital procedure of injections that causes lead to be excreted in the urine. Recently oral chelation drugs have been developed which can be administered without hospitalization. Chelation procedures do not reverse damage already done to the body and it is thought that lead deposited in the brain tissue can not be removed by this procedure. Further treatment requires careful clinical and laboratory surveillance of the child to ensure that there is not continued exposure.
Over time, mesothelioma and lead poisoning litigation has changed significantly. The first asbestos lawsuits were brought mainly on behalf of shipyard workers with a lifetime of asbestos exposure, but a much more diverse group of workers make up current victims of mesothelioma. People develop various types of mesothelioma resulting from asbestos exposure that occurred in ways never known before. That’s why we continuously develop our expertise to keep pace with the latest medical and scientific aspects of the disease. These efforts help our lawyers represent mesothelioma victims with the highest level of professionalism and obtain for them the justice and compensation that they deserve.
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of asbestos exposure or lead poisoning, call the Baltimore Law Offices of David B. Shapiro now at 410-576-9100. The initial consultation is free of charge, and if we agree to accept your case, we will work on a contingent fee basis, which means we get paid for our services only if there is a monetary award or recovery of funds. Don’t delay! You may have a valid claim and be entitled to compensation for your injuries, but a lawsuit must be field before the statue of limitations expires.