Lawsuit Links Asbestos to Lung Cancer

Asbestos is a mineral that has been known to cause mesothelioma, a rare type of cancer, and other medical conditions. To date, most lawsuits related to asbestos have focused on mesothelioma, but a recent lawsuit filed by a U.S. Congresswoman seeks to link asbestos exposure to her development of lung cancer. Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY) is suing more than 70 companies alleging that their actions played a role in her development of lung cancer.

McCarthy claims that exposure to asbestos in her youth, along with her long history of smoking cigarettes, caused her lung cancer. According to a Newsday article, the 69-year-old congresswoman was unknowingly exposed to asbestos – a carcinogen – while washing the clothes of her father and brothers when she was growing up. Her father and brothers had worked as boilermakers in navy yards and powerhouses, where asbestos attached to workers’ clothing every day.

As the Newsday article points out, several studies have shown a link between asbestos and lung cancer and, according to McCarthy’s attorney, the rate of lung cancer in smokers who were also exposed to asbestos has been shown to be 4,000 percent or more higher than the rate in smokers who were not exposed to asbestos.

Dangers of Asbestos Exposure

In addition to lung cancer, asbestos is also linked to mesothelioma – a rare type of cancer. There are three types of mesothelioma:

  1. Pleural mesothelioma, which is the most common form of mesothelioma, occurs in the lining of the lung known as the pleura.
  2. Peritoneal mesothelioma occurs in the lining of the abdominal cavity, known as the peritoneum.
  3. Pericardial mesothelioma originates in the lining around the heart, known as the pericardium.

Asbestos-related mesothelioma lawsuits make up one of the longest, most expensive mass torts in U.S. history, with more than 730,000 claimants and 8,400 defendants as of 2002, according to RAND Corporation.

At Cogan & Power, P.C., our Chicago accident and injury attorneys at Cogan & Power, P.C. focus on protecting accident and injury victims, including the victims of unscrupulous manufacturers whose dangerous products cause illnesses and injuries. If you or a loved one suffers from mesothelioma or other asbestos-related medical condition, you may be able to recover compensation in a product liability or toxic tort lawsuit.

We understand this it is often difficult for injured clients to travel, so we frequently meet with clients in their homes, and each client has a one-on-one relationship and direct communication with the partner handling the case. With more than 100 years of combined experience, we pride ourselves on providing clients with exceptional legal advice and personal attention in an effort to get you the results that you need and deserve.

Contact our office at (312) 477-2500 to learn more about asbestos lawsuits from one of our Chicago accident and injury lawyers.