Sunday, December 6, 2009

Mesothelioma Legal Guide

  • Mesothelioma Legal Overview

    If you are seeking legal assistance as part of your coping strategy with this disease, regardless of your diagnosis and prognosis, treatment plan or specific challenges, there are certain things to bear in mind.

  • Mesothelioma & the Law

    What are mesothelioma lawsuits and how do they arise? Mesothelioma lawsuits are filed by the victims of mesothelioma to avail reparations for medical expenses, pain & suffering and loss of income associated with the growth of this disease.

  • About Mesothelioma Lawyers

    Victims of asbestos poisoning can approach mesothelioma lawyers if they want to take legal action against the company or individual responsible for their condition. In fact, many such victims have won lawsuits and financial compensation running into millions of dollars.

  • Asbestos Lawyer

    Finding a good mesothelioma lawyer is crucial in order for a worker to get financial compensation for their health loss. While there may not be a cure for the disease, the pain and suffering that go along with it are worth the litigation. Patients can have large medical bills from various treatments, and just as in worker's compensation cases, when the employer is responsible for putting the employee in harms way, they should also have the responsibility for compensating the employee and making the remainder of their usually much shorter life expectancy as comfortable as possible.

  • Compensation for Mesothelioma

    The key question is that of who should pay the compensation and how much. If a person suffering from mesothelioma or asbestosis has worked for more than one firm that exposed him to the dangers of asbestos, are the companies jointly liable to pay compensation or can just one company be found to be negligent?

  • Mesothelioma Litigation

    Mesothelioma litigation has developed in large numbers. This is because some companies allow employees to work with asbestos - the cause for this deadliest disease - without informing the workers. For the wrongful deaths of the people who have developed mesothelioma by these irresponsible firms, claims can be filed for legal compensation for the sufferer or for the benefit of the family. This is referred to as mesothelioma litigation.

  • Filing a mesothelioma lawsuit

    The first thing to remember about filing a mesothelioma lawsuit is that you have to act quickly. Each state operates within a statute of limitation, which means that those affected by this disease have a certain time within which to act. These statutes of limitation apply to both affected parties and to relations that may be filing a mesothelioma lawsuit in the event that the affected party has already passed away. The faster you act with regards to getting legal assistance the better. Filing your mesothelioma lawsuit as early as possible could make the difference between a successful and unsuccessful compensation claim.

  • Mesothelioma settlements

    Firming up a solid mesothelioma settlement requires the services of specialized lawyers or law firms. Mesothelioma lawyers and law firms are adequately trained to deal with all challenges of a mesothelioma lawsuit right from helping victims identify the source for the asbestos exposure and working out a good argument before the court. Successful mesothelioma settlement also requires that legal advice be sought within the statutes of limitations of the state in which the lawsuit is being filed. Different US states have different laws for filing mesothelioma claims.

  • Mesothelioma Lawsuits: FAQ

    Mesothelioma lawsuits are complex, and hence require the services of expert mesothelioma lawyers or law firms. Since the disease has an extremely long latency period, the manifestation of the disease can come after several decades of actual exposure to asbestos. Consequently, mesothelioma lawsuits become extremely challenging, as they call for extraordinary efforts on the part of the lawyers or law firms. Mesothelioma lawsuits often result in millions of dollars for the victims.

  • Mesothelioma Legal Options: FAQ

    One of the basic things in awarding compensation is for the judge or the jury to decide whether the harm done was intentional, or whether it was the result of a choice the victim made, in simple terms. In many cases, the circumstance of a victim is a result of a choice he or she made.

Spiritual & Psychological Support

Mesothelioma Spiritual & Psychological Support

In these difficult times many people come closer to God. Most mesothelioma cancer hospitals have a spiritual advisor in residence. Feel free to contact the Chaplain, Pastor, Priest or other spiritual advisor to seek spiritual strength in these difficult times. We found the following quite moving and hope it give you strength.

What Mesothelioma Cannot Do

It cannot cripple love
It cannot shatter hope.
It cannot corrode Faith.
It cannot destroy Peace.
It cannot kill Friendship.
It cannot suppress Memories.
It cannot silence Courage.
It cannot invade the Soul.
It cannot steal Eternal Life.
It cannot conquer the Spirit.

Psychological Assistance for Mesothelioma Patients
Many persons diagnosed with mesothelioma are reluctant to seek help from psychologists or psychiatrists because they perceive this as a sign of weakness or because they are not aware of the benefits of such counseling. Psychological assistance, however, has proved to be an invaluable tool in helping persons cope with mesothelioma. Therefore, at the very least, mesothelioma patients and their families should explore available counseling and support networks

Overview of Mesothelioma Cancer Pain

Overview of Mesothelioma Cancer Pain

Pain can be defined in various ways. Webster's defines pain as "physical suffering associated with a bodily disorder"; or as "a basic bodily sensation induced by a noxious stimulus, received by naked nerve endings, characterized by physical discomfort".

Whatever the definition, pain is a sensation that hurts, and mesothelioma patients should be aware of both its physical and emotional aspects.

Understanding pain requires a basic knowledge of how our body reacts. Pain is transmitted through the body when our nerve endings detect damage to a part of the body. The nerves transmit the warning through defined nerve pathways to the brain, where the signals are interpreted as pain. Sometimes pain results when the nerve pathways themselves are injured. You feel pain when your brain receives the signal from your nerves that damage is occurring. Pain from mesothelioma, as with pain caused by other injuries, is transmitted this way.

Mesothelioma victims may need assistance

Several Important Topics that mesothelioma patients should address include:

The need for family openness in discussing and finding solutions to financial and investment matters
The importance of practicing basic financial planning, for example, all adults should have a will and other essential paperwork in place, make a budget, and monitor cash flow.

Mesothelioma victims may need assistance from the following:

Licensed Certified Financial Planners - they can help with managing and structuring your money.
Hospital Billing Representatives - they can help with insurance questions and issues.
Insurance Agents/Specialists - they can provide assistance on insurance coverage issues.
Bankers and Bank Trust/Loan Officers - they may be able to lend money.
Social Security/Medicare/Medicaid Representatives - they may assist in providing additional sources of income and cover certain hospital payments or prescription costs.
Attorneys - they can often recover significant compensation from the Asbestos issues, help draft a will and prepare health care powers of attorney and other important documents.
Call us at 1-800-780-2686 or email us with a specific request.

Understanding Your Illness - Mesothelioma

Many people, when told they have mesothelioma, feel helpless. But there are many things you and your family can do.

Understanding Your Illness
Understanding your illness and its treatment will help you and your family to

Know what to expect
Do things to help your treatment

It is best to talk to someone who really knows about mesothelioma. Doctors, nurses and social workers at the major mesothelioma centers have extensive knowledge about mesothelioma. Call us at 1-800-780-2686 or email us below for a list of mesothelioma doctors, mesothelioma clinical trials and mesotheioma hospitals.

Before you go to see the doctor it may help if you make a list of questions.
Take someone with you to remind you of what you wanted to ask and to help remember some of the answers.

Practical And Positive Tasks
When you are being treated or recovering from treatments, you may not be able to do things you used to do. But as you begin to feel better

Have a go at simple tasks
Gradually try to do a little more

Success will give you confidence, but remember be patient and take one step at a time. All people want to improve the way they feel. Some of the ways this can be done are

Following a healthy, well-balanced diet
Gradually try to do a little more
Learning relaxation techniques
Exercising regularly

But only do these things if you want to and only if it makes you feel better. Well-meaning friends or relatives may make all sorts of recommendations about what you should do. You don't, however, have to make any sudden or drastic changes to your lifestyle. If you recently have been diagnosed or treated, you may feel you have had enough change for a while.
If you decide to exercise

Build up slowly
Gradually try to do a little more
Base the type of exercise, how strenuous it is and how often you do it, on what you are used to and how well you feel

Many people strongly recommend joining a support group. While there may not be a support group specifically for mesothelioma patients in your area, joining a support group for cancer patients will work.

Following is a list of what patients say really worked for them:

Making lists of questions to ask at the mesothelioma hospital.
Asking about sources of information and support when you go to the hospital. You may not be told what is available unless you do.
Not dwelling on your condition.
Making the most of what you have - do the things you've often put off before.

If you are at home more than you were, you might want to get a dog. You'll get daily exercise and meet a lot of people when taking it out for walks

Experimental Surgery Gives Cancer Patient Hope

Woman Diagnosed With 'Untreatable' Disease

POSTED: 2:45 pm EDT September 15, 2004
UPDATED: 7:37 pm EDT September 16, 2004

Nine months ago, Karen Grant was diagnosed with a cancer that doctors said was untreatable, but an experimental surgery gave her a sliver of hope.

NewsCenter 5's Heather Unruh has been chronicling her incredible journey that began in the spring.

Now, more than ever, the Chadwicks are savoring time spent together.

"I feel, at least, that I'm making sure that I capture every moment somewhere up here, so that I can keep it there," said Grant's sister, Rusty Chadwick.

Karen, who had been married for two years and hoping to start her own family, was given a horrific diagnosis -- mesothelioma.

"It was a very scary moment when (the doctor) told us. I have never even heard of this disease before. I never even heard of it," Karen said.

But without immediate treatment, there's very little time.

"I'm worried about whether she will survive this," Karen's husband, Geoffrey Grant, said.

The rare cancer comes from exposure to asbestos -- an insulation product banned in 1975, when Karen was 1-year-old. At age 29, she's the youngest person ever documented to have it on both lungs.

"It came as a shock because here I am, a healthy person, and all of the sudden, I get this disease on my lungs that I have no idea how I got," Grant said.

Searching for answers, her father tested their Haverhill, Mass., home. But asbestos-covered pipes -- sealed years ago for safety -- were airtight. And at this point, finding the source of Karen's exposure is the least of her worries. First there was a risky surgery.

"The advantage to her is that we're not removing either lung," Brigham and Women's Hospital Dr. David Sugarbaker said.

A cutting-edge technique pioneered in Boston by Sugarbaker was her only shot. It's an experimental surgery with no guarantees. But for Karen, there was nothing to lose.

"I am fighting every day. And I don't think once that I am not going to win," she said.

In the operating room, Sugarbaker and his team carefully cut away the aggressive tumor that lined her lungs, and lasered the tissue to burn away cells that might have been missed. Then they filled Karen's chest cavity with a hot chemotherapy, which gave her lungs an hour long soaking.

"When you heat up chemotherapy, you increase the metabolic rate or the activity of the cancer cells that are left, and cancer cells that are very active are sucking up chemotherapy as a poison," Sugarbaker said.

Grant came through the surgery, but complications nearly killed her. She spent six weeks in intensive care -- unable to breathe and eat on her own, or even talk.

NewsCenter 5 saw her again almost three months later at Youville Rehabilitation Hospital, where she was fighting to get her strength back. At that time, she just wanted to come home.

"I miss my family and not being able to see them all the time," Karen said.

And after 114 days, Karen's big moment finally arrived.

"I made it home. I made it home. I made it. I made it," she said.

Karen knows her cancer may come back, but she's living for the moment -- one breath at a time.

"I shouldn't be here, but I'm here, and it just takes time," she said.

Grant's circumstances are extraordinary. The treatment was very aggressive. Doctors determined it was right for her because she was so young and physically fit.

Her fight isn't over. Doctors are awaiting test results before starting her on traditional chemotherapy, but they do believe the worst is behind her.

Despite the ban on asbestos, the number of cases of this cancer have continued to climb in Massachusetts.

Sugarbaker said that he is seeing an increase in the number of young people with the disease.

Asbestos Photos

Asbestos fibres (SEM picture)
Asbestos particles lodged in the lungs.
Fibrous asbestos on muscovite
Structures containing asbestos are marked
Lung asbestos bodies after chemical digestion of lung tissue.
Chrysotile asbestos
Asbestos fibers
Scanning electron micrograph of asbestiform amphibole from a former vermiculite mining site near Libby, Montana. Source: U.S. Geological Survey and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 8, Denver, Colorado
A vermiculite mine in Libby, Montana. Asbestos has been detected in vermiculite from this mine.
Bagged asbestos awaits disposal in a landfill.
Sample of vermiculite ore mined in Libby, Montana
Raw (right hand) and popped (left hand) vermiculite
(Photo source: U.S. Geological Survey and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 8, Denver, Colorado)
Tremolite Asbestos.
Close Up of Vermiculite Insulation in an Attic
(Photo courtesy of EPA)
Different Grades of Vermiculite
(Photo courtesy of EPA)
Attic Containing Vermiculite Insulation