Many of the chemicals that people encounter and interact with at the workplace may be toxic and dangerous to the health of the individual and indirectly, their family. Toxic chemicals can be harmful in a variety of forms including gas, vapor, dust, liquid, and even solids. Employees who work with toxic chemicals need a basic understanding of the dangers these elements may present.
Without proper safety protection or knowledge of the chemicals used in a work environment, an employee may be exposed to unnecessary risks. These hazardous effects include anything from a mild allergy to a chronic illness or even work-related death.
Toxic chemicals in the form of dust may prove to be one of the most dangerous workplace exposures. If inhaled, dust may cause detrimental effects to the respiratory system, circulatory system, or even nervous system depending on the toxicity of the substance.
One substance with such negative effects is asbestos, a human carcinogen or cancer causing element. Asbestos in small quantities, which practically everyone is exposed to, is harmless. However, in a work environment where asbestos is consistently present, employees may experience detrimental health issues.
Years ago, asbestos was used in large quantities by industries in their products or buildings. Asbestos is a silicate mineral used to reinforce industrial products like cement and pipes, while other industries incorporate asbestos into their products because of its heat resistant qualities.
Consistent exposure to large quantities of asbestos for an individual may result in a rare form of cancer called malignant mesothelioma, or more commonly known as just mesothelioma. Mesothelioma most prominently affects the inner lining of the lungs, known as the pleura, resulting in a rare form of lung cancer.
Most individuals who develop mesothelioma work directly in proximity to asbestos fibers and dusts. However, in some cases, those employees bring home asbestos fibers in their clothing in quantities that may affect their families’ well-being. This emphasizes the importance of obtaining an asbestos exposure lawyer if someone has been in contact with asbestos or other toxic chemicals.
Signs & Symptoms of Mesothelioma
People who first develop mesothelioma show symptoms of chronic cough, chest pain, dry cough, wheezing, and weight loss. The latency period for mesothelioma between exposure and the full development of symptoms ranges from 20 to 50 years depending on the severity of the exposure and the type of mesothelioma of which the individual is diagnosed.
In hopes of diagnosing mesothelioma as early as possible, physicians use both imaging and x-ray scanning to identify the area of concern. Doctors may take a sample of the tissue through different types of biopsies or blood samples to evaluate if mesothelioma is present. Once diagnosed with mesothelioma, treatment possibilities include surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation. (Click Here to View Source)
How Does Asbestos Exposure Happen?
Mesothelioma presents a serious and potentially fatal illness as the result of exposure to asbestos, a toxic chemical in the physical form of dust. In addition to mesothelioma, dust in large quantities may present an additional dangerous situation – toxic chemical explosions. Dust fires and explosions in Orange County cause fatalities and injuries that can be avoided with adequate protection and knowledge about the elements in a work environment, as well as good housekeeping procedures.
To ensure you are protected in a work environment from all chemical exposures, your employer should provide the correct safety equipment and follow the correct safety procedures. Irvine mesothelioma attorneys part of Alvandi Law Group, a workers compensation Law Firm in Los Angeles, CA, have experience with mesothelioma and toxic chemical lawsuits. Contact the Alvandi Law Group for more information and to learn about workplace explosion accident settlements and more.