If you worked, or continue to work, around asbestos here in Tennessee, then you run a high risk for developing a lung disease called asbestosis. Especially before the late 1970s, when asbestos use was curbed, workers would be regularly exposed to the mineral. These include:

• Asbestos miners
• Mill workers
• Auto mechanics
• Electricians
• Shipyard workers

Why asbestos is so dangerous

Even now, many automotive parts contain asbestos, and workers in old buildings may disturb asbestos-containing insulation, tiles and other materials, causing the mineral to go airborne. Asbestos was once prized for its durability and insulating quality, but it was found to scar the lungs after becoming lodged in the alveoli. The result is difficulty breathing and conditions like asbestosis.

What are the symptoms of asbestosis?

Symptoms may not appear until 10 to 40 years after initial exposure to asbestos. Besides shortness of breath, victims may develop a dry cough, feel continual chest pain and tightness, lose their appetite and notice that their fingertips and toes are wider and rounder: a condition called clubbing.

Asbestosis can arise from secondhand exposure since asbestos can cling to a person’s clothes. Family members of asbestos miners and so on are at risk, then. Smoking retains the asbestos fibers in the lungs and so can accelerate the progression of asbestosis. In serious cases, asbestosis can lead to lung cancer.

Filing a claim involving asbestos

Perhaps you were exposed to asbestos through no fault of your own. An employer may have had you work around asbestos without the proper gear, or a manufacturer may have done nothing about the presence of the mineral in a product you used. Whatever the case may be like, you may find that things become a lot easier with a lawyer by your side to explain the relevant laws and guide you through the filing process.