Asbestos Can You Sue For Mesothelioma Too?
Asbestos is a naturally-occuring fibrous mineral of metamorpic hydrous magnesium silicate. The term
"metamorphic" is used to describe a process of extreme heat and pressure which creates specific
secondary patterns of minerals with new chemical and/or physical properties. As the primary rock is
heated and recooled, silicate crystals align in long rows of mineral fibers, which easily separate into tiny
shards thinner than a human hair. Asbestos fibers are not a health risk as long as they are undisturbed.
However, when asbestos is undergoes natural weathering, or is mined and processed, the microscopic
particles waft into the air and cause disease if they are inhaled.
Asbestosis occurs when an inhaled asbestos particle irritates the body's natural defence mechanisms,
causing inflammation and scarring which eventually restricts lung function. Mesothelioma is a malignant
tumor of the membranes surrounding the heart, lungs and abdominal cavity. Asbestos can also cause
cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus, larynx, stomach, lung and lymphoid tissue.
Asbestos exposure can also cause non-fatal illnesses such as asbestos warts, caused when asbestos
fibers are lodged in the skin, causing lumps of scar tissue to form around the irritant in the same manner
as they do in the lungs to cause asbestosis; pleural plaques, discrete, sometimes calcified fibrous lesions
which can be seen on X-rays but are too small to cause breathing impairment; and diffuse pleural
thickening, which can cause breathing impairment if it is extensive.
Due to its fire resistant properties, asbestos has been used historically for household and industrial
purposes. It has been found woven into burial cloths in ancient Egypt, and Charlemagne reportedly had a
tablecloth made of asbestos which he would throw into a fire to clean.
In World War II asbestos was considered so important by the War Department that it was considered a
strategic material, and many American workers were expo