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Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Mesothelioma | Mesothelioma Symptoms and Treatment

Mesothelioma is a rare and aggressive cancer linked to asbestos exposure.  Mesothelioma cancer invades the mesothelium – the lining of tissue that surround vital organs.  The most common is pleural mesothelioma or cancer of the lining of the lungs.  Mesothelioma also attacks the lining of either the heart, abdomen, or testicles.   

Symptoms

The mesothelium has two layers: one around the organ itself and another forming an outer sac. Between these two layers is a fluid that aids organ movement. Mesothelioma causes the mesothelial cells to multiply wildly and to produce excess lubricating fluid. Ultimately, the mesothelium becomes a thick, tumorous coating of the organ accompanied by excessive fluid. This coating and fluid prevent complete, comfortable expansion of the lung.

Symptoms of mesothelioma can include:
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Lumps
  • Weight loss
  • Cough
  • Hoarseness
  • Localized pain to the particular cancerous lining
  • Swelling and fluid buildup
  • Shortness of breath
  • Painful breathing
  • Fever
  • Respiratory infection
  • Fatigue and anemia
  • Digestive problems
  • Bowel problems
  • Fever
Doctors perform a variety of tests to diagnose mesothelioma and to determine how advanced the cancer is including x-rays, blood tests, pathologic tests, endoscopic ultrasound, bronchoscopy, CT scans, lung-function tests, biopsies or other diagnostic surgeries, MRI and PET scans.

Prognosis

Mesothelioma can metastasize or spread into the organs themselves or to other areas of the body. By the time mesothelioma is diagnosed, the patient usually has only a matter of months to live and treatment is usually palliative - to alleviate symptoms and slow the progress of the disease.
Treatment

Treatment can include surgery to excise the mesothelial and surrounding tissue, chemotherapy, drug regimens, drug trials, gene therapies, radiation, draining of fluid followed by the injection of medication to prevent further buildup, and, rarely, lung removal. Research into new treatment methods continues, as current therapies have relatively disappointing results. If the cancer has spread to other parts of the body, it is usually a terminal condition. Current patients may be eligible to participate in experimental treatments, if they desire.

The Throneberry Law Group takes cases throughout the United States. We will come to you to help you trace the asbestos exposure that caused mesothelioma (or asbestosis or lung cancer). We offer a free consultation at 888-506-1131 to answer your questions, and it costs nothing up front for us to represent you in the lawsuit — we collect no fees unless we recover compensation.  

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Understand your Malignant Mesothelioma Treatment Options

Malignant mesothelioma treatment options generally fall into the following categories – surgery, chemotherapy, hormonal therapy or radiation therapy.  These four treatment modalities are the major “conventional” or “mainstream” treatment options for malignant mesothelioma.  Malignant mesothelioma is very aggressive form of cancer where the tumor grows up against anything it contacts often invading surrounding structures and organs.  As a result, malignant mesothelioma treatment is often limited as with other advanced, aggressive, and metastatic cancers.  The goal in treating malignant mesothelioma becomes one focused simply on extending one’s life.   

Important questions to ask your doctor about malignant mesothelioma treatments include:
  • What is the effectiveness or efficacy of the mesothelioma treatment?
  • Is the malignant mesothelioma treatment designed to cure (curative) or designed to improve symptoms (palliative)?
  • What are the side effects of the mesothelioma treatment?
  • How long will the mesothelioma treatment last?
A critical aspect of going with a particular mesothelioma treatment is that you believe in it and have full confidence that it will work.  It is also critical that you have a good rapport with and confidence in your doctor.  Finally, find out as much as you can about your mesothelioma treatment so that you understand your treatment and be more positive that it will work for you.

The Throneberry Law Group takes cases throughout the United States. We will come to you to help you trace the asbestos exposure that caused mesothelioma (or asbestosis or lung cancer). We offer a free consultation at 888-506-1131 to answer your questions, and it costs nothing up front for us to represent you in the lawsuit — we collect no fees unless we recover compensation.  

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Mesothelioma | Questions to Ask your Doctor

The trauma of a malignant mesothelioma diagnosis leaves confusion and disbelief in its wake.  Your doctor will likely recommend you see an oncologist.  Your doctor typically will recommend a specialist for your treatment of malignant mesothelioma.  From the initial diagnosis, ask your doctor for a copy of all of your test results.  You have a right to do so.  Be certain to keep a folder with your pathology report, blood tests, imaging reports (x-ray, ct scan, PET scan, etc.) and any other medical results.  Keeping these results is invaluable for showing another doctor  the medical history of your illness should you seek another opinion or alternative treatment.

Useful questions to ask your oncologist about malignant mesothelioma include:
  • How far has the malignant mesothelioma spread and what is your life expectancy?
  • What should you expect next?
  • What organs have been affected by the malignant mesothelioma?
  • What are my treatment options for malignant mesothelioma and which ones would you recommend?
  • What success rate does the treatment have on malignant mesothelioma?  Will the treatment be a cure for the malignant mesothelioma?
  • What are the potential short-term and long-term side effects of the malignant mesothelioma?
You have a right ask as many questions as you want until you are comfortable that your doctor has covered the bases and explored all the options.  These are uncomfortable issues, and you have to brace yourself for the bad news, but you need information to make informed decisions.

Throneberry Law Group takes cases throughout the United States. We will come to you to help you trace the asbestos exposure that caused mesothelioma (or asbestosis or lung cancer). We offer a free consultation at 888-506-1131 to answer your questions, and it costs nothing up front for us to represent you in the lawsuit — we collect no fees unless we recover compensation. 

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Mesothelioma | Military Veterans & Asbestos Exposure

Nearly one-third of individuals diagnosed with mesothelioma in the United States are military veterans.  The enlisted personnel who served and worked on military ships or other vessels were often exposed to asbestos without their knowledge.  The enlisted personnel in the U.S. Navy, for example, often worked the dirty jobs in the boiler room, in maintenance, pipefitting and construction had the heaviest exposure coming in direct contact with asbestos.  Anyone who served aboard ships or in the shipbuilding yards likely had direct contact or significant second-hand exposure to asbestos.

Navy-related mesothelioma has been traced to this asbestos exposure.  Mesothelioma is an asbestos-related cancer that invades the lining of the lungs, stomach and abdomen.  Mesothelioma has a long latency period of 20 to 30 years after the asbestos exposure.

Examples of U.S. Navy Veterans’ occupations that were likely exposed to asbestos include:
  • Shipfitter
  • Boilermaker
  • Steamfitter
  • Engineman
  • Mechanics Mate
  • Boiler Operator
  • Machinist
  • Power Engineer
  • Fireman
  • Welder
  • Water Tender
  • Boiler Tender
  • Lagger
  • Plumber
  • Pipefitter
  • Submarine Engineerman
  • Engine Room Mechanic
Attorney Michael Throneberry has first-hand experience with mesothelioma from his own father-in-law's death from the swift-moving cancer. We work quickly and diligently to identify the work sites and specific exposures to file lawsuits as promptly as possible so that our clients do not have the added burden of financing medical care.

We take cases nationwide and we will travel to you. Call today for a free consultation at 888-506-1131 if you or a loved one has symptoms or a diagnosis of mesothelioma or asbestos-related occupational disease. Our lawyers will travel Nationwide to assist railroad worker victims and families.


Monday, April 25, 2011

Mesothelioma | Mesothelioma Symptoms

In the early stages of the disease, mesothelioma may not have any visible symptoms and is very hard to detect. In the later stages, certain symptoms begin to develop and are usually caused by the growth of cancer and its pressure on certain nerves.

Pleural Mesothelioma:
  • Lower back or chest pain
  • Continual cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Husky voice
  • Weight loss of 10 percent or more
  • Fever or sweating
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Chronic fatigue or easily fatigued by exertion
  • Forgetfulness or memory loss
Peritoneal Mesothelioma:
  • Abdominal pain
  • Swollen abdomen
  • Feeling sick
  • Loss of appetite
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Constipation and diarrhea
Some of the above symptoms, especially chronic breathing problems and fatigue from minimal activity, can also be indications of other asbestos disease, such as asbestosis or lung cancer. Of course, these may be symptoms of a completely unrelated illness. However, if you have been exposed to asbestos in the past or if the symptoms persist, it is very important that you consult with your physician or health care provider immediately.

The Throneberry Law Group helps individuals and their families who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma or an asbestos-related lung cancer.  We offer a free consultation at 888-506-1131 to answer your questions, and it costs nothing up front for us to represent you in the lawsuit — we collect no fees unless we recover compensation

Monday, April 18, 2011

Mesothelioma | Railroad Workers and Asbestos Exposure

Railroad companies used asbestos extensively even though it new that asbestos exposed a serious health threat to railroad workers.  Up to the 1970s, the railroad industry used asbestos contaminated products at the detriment of the railroad workers.  There are even some accounts that some locomotives contained asbestos until the late 1990s.  The railroad industry had a long standing dependence on asbestos through its use to repair and manufacture a variety of train surfaces and parts. As a result, countless unsuspecting railroad workers over the past two centuries have been unknowingly exposed to asbestos. 

Railroad Workers & Asbestos Materials

There were many railroad industry products that contained asbestos.  Common uses of asbestos in the railroad industry were asbestos insulation or lagging that was attached to the steam engine, fireboxes and piping systems.  Carriages and boxcars also contained asbestos.  Asbestos was often used on cabooses and boxcars as coverings for walls or wallboards, ceilings and floor tiles.   Brake linings and clutches in the railroad industry were often made from asbestos.  Cloth packing materials and ropes even contained asbestos in the railroad industry.  Gaskets were also composed of asbestos.

Railroad Workers & Mesothelioma

As a result of the widespread use of asbestos in the railroad industry, men and women who worked around steam locomotives, roundhouses, back shops or repair facilities were exposed to asbestos.  The insulation and gaskets containing asbestos were often custom made for a particular engine.  The making of these custom asbestos materials involved cutting, bending, sanding and grinding the asbestos material prior to installation.  The result of this work released friable asbestos particles in the air exposing unsuspecting railroad workers to asbestos.

For railroad workers, the asbestos at the roundhouse, back shops or repair facilities was the most dangerous.  When inhaled, asbestos can attach to the mesothelial lining of the lung. This exposure in railroad worker often resulted in mesothelioma, the deadly form of cancer that can affect the lining of the lungs or abdomen or the heart.

Legal Advocacy and Personal Service for the Hard Times Ahead

Attorney Michael Throneberry has first-hand experience with mesothelioma from his own father-in-law's death from the swift-moving cancer. We work quickly and diligently to identify the work sites and specific exposures to file lawsuits as promptly as possible so that our clients do not have the added burden of financing medical care.

We take cases nationwide and we will travel to you. Call today for a free consultation at 888-506-1131 if you or a loved one has symptoms or a diagnosis of mesothelioma or asbestos-related occupational disease. Our lawyers will travel Nationwide to assist railroad worker victims and families.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Mesothelioma | NJ Supreme Court upholds $7 million mesothelioma jury award from ExxonMobil.

The N.J Supreme Court denied ExxonMobil’s appeal of $7 million mesothelioma jury award.  In 2008, Bonnie Anderson argued and the jury agreed that she contracted peritoneal mesothelioma by coming in regular contact with her husband’s asbestos-laden clothes.

            Malignant peritoneal mesothelioma is an asbestos-related cancer that invades the lining of the stomach and abdomen.  Second most after pleural mesothelioma, peritoneal mesothelioma accounts for less than 20% of all mesothelioma cases.  As with other mesothelioma types, peritoneal mesothelioma has a long latency period of 20 to 30 years after the asbestos exposure.

            Bonnie Anderson was diagnosed with malignant peritoneal mesothelioma in 2001.  Anderson’s exposure to asbestos came from washing her husband’s clothes.  Her husband worked the first six years at the Exxon refinery removing insulation to fix pumps and filters and he regularly came home with his clothes covered in insulation dust – a dust she always shook out before tossing his clothes in the washing machine. 

            Since Anderson’s diagnosis of mesothelioma, she has undergone two surgeries and multiple rounds of chemotherapy involving five different types of drugs.  After the NJ Supreme Court declined to take up Exxon’s appeal allowing the $7million jury verdict to stand, Bonnie Anderson, the 62-year-old New Jersey resident, said

 “It’s bittersweet because I’m going back into chemotherapy.”

“I wish I could tell you it was a glorious day to learn this but you take life in perspective.”

“I’d rather not be sick.”

Source:  See Star-Ledger