How Is Asbestos-Related Lung Cancer Different from Mesothelioma?
While both lung cancer and mesothelioma can affect the lungs, there are key differences in these two forms of cancer. While lung cancer involves cancerous cells forming within the lungs themselves, mesothelioma generally involves cancerous cells forming in the pleural lining, or the tissue lining that surrounds the lungs.
However, both asbestos-related lung cancer and mesothelioma generally occur in the same manner—microscopic asbestos fibers are inhaled after they become airborne. Once inhaled, these fibers can become lodged in the lungs and/or in the lining surrounding the lungs. This can, in turn, cause cells to mutate and become cancerous as they work vainly to remove the fibers.
Both asbestos-related lung cancer and mesothelioma have long latency periods. The latency period refers to the amount of time between the inhalation of asbestos fibers and the development (and diagnosis) of cancer. The latency period for asbestos-related lung cancer can range from about 15 to 35 years. This means that if you were exposed to asbestos over 30 years ago and have been recently diagnosed with lung cancer, your cancer could be related to or caused by that exposure.
Who Is Most at Risk for Asbestos-Related Lung Cancer?
Some individuals are at a higher risk of developing asbestos-related lung cancer than others. These include individuals in certain occupations, as well as smokers.
High-risk occupations include (but are not limited to):
- Industrial workers
- HVAC technicians
- Steel and ironworkers
- Sheet metal workers
- Navy workers/veterans
- Automobile mechanics
If you or a loved one worked in any of these or other high-risk industries and later received a lung cancer diagnosis, there is a possibility that the cancer was caused by prolonged or severe asbestos exposure.
How Is Asbestos-Related Lung Cancer Treated?
There are several treatment options for lung cancer, including cases caused by asbestos exposure. The exact treatment that will be best suited to your situation will depend on a variety of factors, such as the stage of the cancer, your age and gender, and the overall prognosis. It is strongly recommended that you discuss all available treatment options with your oncology team.
Some possible lung cancer treatment options include:
- Surgery to remove cancerous tumors
- Radiation therapy
- Multimodal treatment
In many cases, a multimodal approach may be beneficial. Such an approach involves several different treatments used concurrently to aggressively attack cancerous cells.
What Is the Prognosis for Asbestos-Related Lung Cancer?
Lung cancer is the number one cause of cancer-related death in the United States, with asbestos-related lung cancer accounting for approximately 6,000 deaths every year. Unfortunately, this means the prognosis for most cases is poor. However, there are a multitude of factors that go into each individual patient’s prognosis. The earlier the cancer is caught, identified, and treated, the better. A more advanced stage of cancer will have a poorer prognosis than an earlier stage. Other factors, such as whether or not the patient is or was a smoker and the patient’s overall health, will also play a key role in a specific patient’s outlook.
Generally speaking, the five-year survival rate for patients with lung cancer is about 18%. This means that of all people diagnosed with lung cancer, about 18% go on to live for five years or more after receiving their diagnosis.
Buffalo Lung Cancer Lawyers
Lung Cancer & Asbestos Exposure
In addition to mesothelioma, which is arguably the most common and well-known cancer caused by asbestos exposure, asbestos can also lead to lung cancer. Though a small percentage of lung cancer cases are linked to asbestos exposure, it can and does happen. In fact, asbestos-related lung cancer is far more common than mesothelioma; some studies show that exposure to asbestos results in as many as six times more lung cancer cases than mesothelioma cases. Being exposed to asbestos over a prolonged period of time can increase the risk of lung cancer in people who smoke, as well as in those who do not.
If you believe your or your loved one’s lung cancer diagnosis is connected to asbestos exposure, reach out to our Buffalo lung cancer attorneys today to learn more. You could be entitled to financial compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages, and Richmond Vona, LLC can help you fight for the fair recovery you are owed. With extensive experience in this area of law, as well as a proven track record of hundreds of millions of dollars recovered for our clients, our team has the resources, skills, and reputation to effectively advocate for you.
Call us today at (716) 300-5885 or contact us online to get started with a free, no-obligation consultation.
If you or your loved one was diagnosed with lung cancer, you are likely looking at massive, mounting medical bills and other significant costs. If the cancer was caused by asbestos exposure, you do not have to face these losses on your own.
At Richmond Vona, LLC, our Buffalo lung cancer lawyers can help you learn whether you are eligible for compensation. We will sit down with you, listen to your story, and work to understand your unique legal goals. We take the time to get to know our clients in order to provide them with the personalized legal services they deserve.
Please contact us online or call (716) 300-5885 today to schedule your free case evaluation.
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