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Who Was Exposed To Asbestos?
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All of the most common types of lung cancer are linkable to Asbestos. However, a causal connection is not automatic. We need an expert doctor's opinion to support whether your lung cancer is caused by exposure to Asbestos or other factors. Mesothelioma cases get to skip this causation stage of review because there is no other known cause other than Asbestos exposure.

What is Lung Cancer?

Primary lung cancer is a malignant tumor that develops in your lung tissue. All cancers are named classified by their organ of origination and their tissue type.

The most common are Small Cell, Large Cell, Adenocarcinoma, and Squamous Cell. One in sixteen Americans will develop lung cancer at some point in their lifetimes.

Each cancer responds to medication, radiation, and surgery differently. Your doctor must know what kind of cancer they are treating to understand what treatment strategy will be the most effective.

A needle biopsy is usually the best way to discover the exact cell type and confirm the diagnosis.

How Doctors Connect Your Lung Cancer to Asbestos Exposure?

The process to prove if your Lung Cancer is Asbestos-related begins by reviewing your medical records for the following information:

  • Cell type and diagnosis of primary lung cancer by tissue biopsy.
  • History of occupational Asbestos exposure
  • Underlying bilateral scarring of the lungs
  • Evidence of lung function impairment

By considering all of these factors, a physician can state a medical opinion within a reasonable degree of medical certainty that specific lung cancer is related or not related to asbestos exposure.

Once a physician supports your lung cancer, we can file your claims.

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Tissue Biopsy Diagnosis of Primary Lung Cancer

There are four main types of Asbestos lung cancer divided into non-small cell carcinoma and small cell carcinoma. Roughly 80% of lung cancers fall under the non-small cell umbrella, including adenocarcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and large cell carcinoma. The second primary type of asbestos lung cancer (at around 20%) is small cell carcinoma.

How is the Exact Lung Cancer Cell Type Diagnosed?

The exact cell type of lung cancer is diagnosed by a tissue biopsy performed with a large needle or endoscope or by studying the cytology of fluid removed from the lung.

A pathologist will review the tissue and utilize different chemicals and enzymes to reveal its immunohistochemical properties. Each tissue profile will be matched to lung cancer, Mesothelioma, or may come back as benign (non-cancerous).

History of Occupational Asbestos Exposure

Another important factor in lung cancer causation is having at least five years of occupational exposure in a known Asbestos trade or work site. Exposure before 1980 qualifies for the most Asbestos claims; however, any provable post-1980 exposure can be relevant to a medical causation report.

Asbestos exposure can also happen through the work exposures of family members who bring their work clothes home to be laundered.

Underlying Bilateral Scarring of the Lungs

To prove Asbestos caused lung cancer, our expert doctors will need to review an x-ray or high-resolution CT scan. For example, we would order your most recent x-ray with clear image quality and send it for a pulmonologist review.

This doctor would review your film and visualize and grade the amount of scarring. This process is called a "B-read" that the U.S. Department of Labor developed many years ago to characterize lung damage by scarification. The doctor will consider the extensiveness of scarring and whether the damage is in both lungs (or bilateral).

For anyone exposed to Asbestos for an extended period, you expect bilateral scarification of their lungs that appears cloudy on an x-ray or CT scan. A pulmonologist or radiologist will also be able to spot clues left by damage from Asbestos, such as the rounding off of the costophrenic angles: the outside corners of your lungs.

Evidence of Lung Function Impairment

A final piece of evidence that can help a doctor connect a lung cancer to Asbestos exposure is a diagnosis of Asbestosis.

Asbestosis is a progressive lung disease that causes the lungs to lose the ability to exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide. It can be visualized on x-rays and high-resolution CT scans but is typically identified with a pulmonary function test (PFT).

The PFT is a test where your physician will ask you to breathe forcefully into a plastic tube containing colored balls.

The data collected from the PFT shows your lung capacity and whether you have any obstructive or restrictive damage to your lungs.

If your lung function matches specific benchmarks, you will be diagnosed with Asbestosis, which will automatically link an existing lung cancer diagnosis to Asbestos exposure.

Asbestos-Related Lung Cancer

A lung cancer diagnosis may be related to Asbestos if the person was exposed and has other indications of Asbestos injury. There are over 240,000 diagnoses of lung cancer in the United States every year.

Not all of these cancers are related to Asbestos. Still, many lung cancers are found in a specific age range with occupational exposure to Asbestos.

If you worked around or with Asbestos-containing products (or in an Asbestos-containing building) for five years before the 1980s and have lung cancer, you likely have an Asbestos-Related Lung Cancer.

Asbestos fibers have been proven to damage the DNA of lung tissue, causing the following lung cancers:

  • Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
  • Adenocarcinoma
  • Squamous Cell Carcinoma
  • Large Cell Carcinoma
  • Small Cell Carcinoma

Asbestos can also have a synergistic effect with other factors like smoking that can dramatically increase lung cancer rates.

Smoking and Lung Cancer

Smoking and Lung Cancer

Even other causes of lung cancer like smoking can be linked with Asbestos exposure through the synergistic effect. That is where smoking combines with Asbestos to raise your likelihood of lung cancer developing 14 times higher than smoking alone.  If you, or a loved one, have Asbestos lung cancer, give us a call to see if we can help.

Asbestos Lung Cancer Compensation

If you been diagnosed with Lung Cancer, or if a family member has died from asbestos-related diseases, Flint Cooper will be able to help you obtain compensation. The process of maximizing this Asbestos compensation for you and your family can begin in just a few months.

Flint Cooper have a top national rated asbestos lung cancer lawyers litigation team in case you decide to file a lawsuit. We have recovered over 3 billion dollars for our clients.

If you, or a loved one, have lung cancer, give us a call Toll-Free (855) 883-6447 to see if we can help.

Asbestos Lung Cancer FAQs

Does Asbestos Cause Lung Cancer?

Yes, Asbestos is the cause of some but not all lung cancers. An expert doctor can determine if Asbestos is related to a specific patient's disease. The medical record and occupational exposure history help support legal claims based on Asbestos Lung Cancer.

Did Smoking Or Asbestos Cause My Lung Cancer?

Smoking can cause lung cancer; statistically, it is more likely to cause small cell carcinoma than other types. However, tobacco and Asbestos are more dangerous together through a synergistic effect. That is where smoking combines with Asbestos to raise your likelihood of lung cancer developing 14 times higher than smoking alone.

Even if you smoke or smoked in the past, you should give Flint Cooper a call, Toll-Free (855) 883-6447 if you are diagnosed with lung cancer.

Are Lung Cancer Cases Eligible For Financial Compensation?

Yes, a diagnosis of lung cancer in the past three years can result in significant financial awards. They are potentially eligible for the same bankruptcy trust funds that compensate victims of mesothelioma cancers. Flint Cooper has helped thousands of clients with Lung Cancer receive compensation for diagnosis through trust funds, settlements, and filings lawsuits in court.

Adrianne Andrus

Reviewed by:  Adrienne Andrus
Chief Editor of Flint Cooper
Client Advocate & Product Liability Paralegal since 2015.
Bachelor of Arts Degree in Communication, SIU Edwardsville

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