Perhaps, you’ve been wondering about the deep cough or chest pain that always greets you in the morning. Or maybe, you have trouble breathing when you break even the slightest sweat later in the day. What’s more confusing and troublesome, you don’t even smoke.

There’s a chance you could have been exposed to asbestos, especially if you live in the Coastal Carolina region, where there are plenty of shipyards, chemical and power plants, manufacturing factories, oil refineries, mines, smelters, aerospace and automotive manufacturing facilities, demolition construction sites, railroads and auto brake shops. Have you ever worked in one of these industries? Then you may have inhaled or ingested the cancer-causing mineral fiber.

Asbestos is the name given to a group of minerals that occur naturally in the environment as bundles of fibers. Because asbestos is resistant to heat and chemicals and does not conduct electricity, it has been widely used in many building products. Often, the symptoms of asbestos-related diseases show up years, or even decades, after exposure.

Exposure to asbestos may increase the risk of asbestosis, a non-malignant scarring of the lungs, other nonmalignant lung and pleural disorders, lung cancer and mesothelioma, a cancer of the lining of the chest and abdominal cavities. Smokers who are also exposed to asbestos have a greatly increased risk of lung cancer.

If you notice any respiratory symptoms, the first thing you should do is see a healthcare specialist about your symptoms and concerns. Make sure your doctor is familiar with asbestos-related illnesses so that you receive an accurate diagnosis.

Know Your Rights

If you have been exposed to asbestos in the workplace – especially if you don’t smoke – there could be significant financial compensation available to you and your family. People who have been injured by exposure to asbestos may receive payment for medical care, lost income, physical impairment, rehabilitation and other expenses.

As long as you or your family members can prove exposure to asbestos, you may be entitled to financial benefits. To learn about your rights contact the South Carolina personal injury attorneys Joye Law Firm, at (888) 918-4959 or fill out this online case evaluation form.

About the Author

Mark Joye is the Head of the Litigation Department at the Joye Law Firm. A Board-Certified Trial Advocate with nearly 30 years of litigation experience, he currently serves on the Board of Governors for the American Association for Justice and is a past president of the South Carolina Association for Justice. In a recent trial, Joye headed a trial team that secured $17 million for a family killed in a tractor-trailer accident.

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