[2023 Guide] AFFF Side Effects, Health Risks, & Cancers
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On this page, we’ll discuss the most common AFFF side effects (from exposure), correlation between Aqueous Film-forming Foam (AFFF) and cancer, non-cancer health effects from exposure to the toxic firefighting foam, and much more.
Individuals who were exposed to toxic firefighting foam and subsequently developed cancer or other related illnesses are filing AFFF Firefighting Foam Lawsuits against manufacturers.
Perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) chemicals used in the manufacturing of some AFFF firefighting foams have been linked to severe health conditions such as kidney and testicular cancer, thyroid disease, liver damage, immune system deficiencies, and more.
This blog post aims to shed light on the side effects, health risks, and cancers associated with AFFF exposure.
By understanding the potential dangers, those affected can take appropriate action to protect their health and seek justice.
We will also discuss the importance of legal representation and filing lawsuits against responsible parties to secure financial compensation for the damages caused by PFAS contamination.
If you or a loved one were exposed to toxic firefighting foam and subsequently developed cancer or other health problems, you may be eligible to file an AFFF Lawsuit.
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We understand the severity of health issues related to toxic firefighting foam exposure, and we are sensitive to the needs of those filing AFFF Lawsuits.
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Several different AFFF side effects, health problems, and types of cancer have been linked to PFAS chemicals present in many AFFF firefighting foams.
Cancers linked to AFFF exposure include:
Other health problems include:
AFFF Lawsuits are filed against toxic firefighting foam manufacturers for the various health problems linked to exposure.
AFFF Lawsuits allege that exposure to toxic firefighting foam caused cancer and other health problems, and that AFFF manufacturers failed to warn users of the potential for devastating health effects.
These lawsuits are consolidated into multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the US District Court for the District of South Carolina.
If you were exposed to AFFF firefighting foam and subsequently developed cancer or other related health problems, you may be eligible to file an AFFF Lawsuit.
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Aqueous film-forming foam (AFFF) may contain toxic chemicals.
Perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS chemicals) are known for their resistance to heat, oil, and water, making them effective in suppressing and extinguishing flammable liquid fires.
However, these so-called “forever chemicals” have gained attention due to their persistent nature and potential adverse health effects.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is concerned about the potential human health risks of exposure to PFAS chemicals since they can contaminate water, air, soil, and food sources.
Traces of these toxic chemicals have also been found in the bloodstream of both humans and animals.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also states that several studies linked PFAS exposure to various health issues, including liver damage, thyroid disease, reproduction issues, and immune system dysfunctions.
These dangerous chemicals can enter the human body through ingestion, inhalation, or skin contact.
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) voices concerns about the potential harmful effects of PFAS.
Animal studies show that PFAS contamination is higher in animals than in humans, causing liver and immune system damage, decreased birth weight, congenital disabilities, delayed development, and neonatal deaths in lab animals.
Exposure to PFAS containing firefighting foam may be linked to the following cancers:
Human studies suggest that high levels of particular PFAS chemicals can lead to the following:
More scientific study is needed to understand the full scope of health effects related to PFAS exposure.
Many health, environmental, and governmental organizations are still conducting studies to better understand the potential risks of PFAS contamination.
Further regulation and action regarding PFAS exposure are being implemented, including by the National Firefighter Registry (NFR).
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) established the NFR in 2018, thanks to the Firefighter Cancer Registry Act.
It seeks to study the correlation between firefighters who were consistently exposed to AFFF and cancer development.
Exposure to AFFF can lead to immediate side effects, affecting different parts of the human body.
These AFFF side effects may manifest shortly after exposure and can vary in severity depending on the individual’s sensitivity and duration of exposure.
Contact with AFFF can cause skin irritation, redness, itching, and rashes. In some cases, it may lead to chemical burns. Additionally, AFFF can cause eye irritation, redness, itching, and temporary vision problems if it comes into direct contact with the eyes.
Difficulty breathing is a common side effect of AFFF exposure.
Inhalation of AFFF foam or its vapors can irritate the respiratory system, leading to coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, and chest tightness.
Individuals with pre-existing respiratory conditions may experience exacerbated symptoms.
Ingesting AFFF-contaminated water or food can result in gastrointestinal problems, including nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and diarrhea.
These symptoms may persist briefly or become chronic with prolonged exposure.
Those who have ingested AFFF must seek medical attention immediately if these side effects occur, as AFFF may cause internal damage.
Some individuals exposed to AFFF may experience neurological symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, confusion, memory loss, and difficulty concentrating.
These symptoms may affect daily functioning and quality of life.
More severe neurological issues may persist depending on the duration and severity of exposure.
Numerous studies have established a link between AFFF exposure and various types of cancer.
The toxic substances present in AFFF, particularly PFAS, have been associated with the development of cancerous cells.
Understanding the potential cancers that may arise from AFFF exposure is essential, as early detection and treatment are crucial for improving outcomes.
Exposure to AFFF has been linked to an increased risk of kidney cancer.
The chemicals in AFFF can accumulate in the kidneys, leading to the development of malignant tumors over time.
In a study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute (JNCI), participants with the highest concentrations of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), a type of PFAS, in their blood were more than twice as likely to develop kidney cancer than those with the lowest concentrations.
Prolonged exposure to AFFF may also elevate the risk of bladder cancer.
PFAS chemicals can accumulate in the bladder and cause cellular changes that can lead to cancerous growth.
A 3M study discovered increased bladder cancer mortality among workers frequently exposed to perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), a type of PFAS.
Research suggests a correlation between AFFF exposure and liver cancer.
The liver plays a vital role in filtering toxins from the body, and the accumulation of PFAS chemicals can contribute to liver damage and the development of cancer cells.
Some animal studies indicate that these dangerous chemicals increase the risk of fatty liver and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) by altering amino acid, hepatic lipid, and glucose metabolism.
PFAS exposure has been associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer in males.
Many organizations are still looking into the exact mechanisms behind this link, but it underscores the potential harm of PFAS chemicals.
A study found that these forever chemicals play a significant role in the development of prostate cancer and the progression of tumors in men exposed to AFFF and PFAS.
Some research suggests a potential connection between PFAS exposure and an elevated risk of testicular cancer.
For example, an ecological study found that men living in areas with PFAS contamination have an increased risk of developing testicular cancer.
However, further studies are needed to establish a definitive causal relationship.
Individuals exposed to AFFF may face an increased risk of colorectal cancer.
Ingesting PFAS-contaminated water or food can accumulate these toxic chemicals in the colon, potentially contributing to the development of cancerous cells.
One study discovered perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) can induce colorectal cancer cell invasion, suggesting a link between PFAS contamination and colorectal cancer.
AFFF exposure has been associated with an elevated risk of pancreatic cancer.
The pancreas plays a crucial role in digestion and hormone regulation, and the accumulation of PFAS chemicals can disrupt its normal function and increase the likelihood of cancer formation.
According to a Carcinogenesis study, perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) exposure can lead to increases in the pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PanIN) area, promoting the progression of pancreatic cancer.
PFAS chemicals found in AFFF have been linked to an increased risk of thyroid cancer.
These chemicals can interfere with the thyroid gland’s hormone production and function, potentially leading to the development of cancerous growths.
A study in the Toxics journal suggests that PFAS exposure disrupts thyroid hormone physiology and causes carcinogenic effects through immunosuppression, oxidative damage, and cellular pathway disruption.
In addition to the increased risk of cancer, AFFF exposure can result in various non-cancerous health effects.
These health issues can significantly impact an individual’s well-being and quality of life.
Depending on the duration and intensity of AFFF exposure, individuals may experience eye and skin issues.
PFAS exposure can cause persistent eye irritation, conjunctivitis, and skin problems such as rashes, itching, and chemical burns.
Continued exposure can lead to chronic dermatological issues and discomfort.
PFAS chemicals in AFFF can cause endocrine disruption, affecting the body’s hormone production and regulation.
This disruption can lead to hormonal imbalances, fertility problems, and complications during pregnancy.
The more prolonged the exposure, the greater the risk of developing hormonal imbalances and endocrine-related issues.
Prolonged exposure to AFFF can result in liver and kidney damage.
These vital organs are responsible for filtering toxins from the body, and the accumulation of PFAS chemicals can impair their function and contribute to long-term health complications.
These complications develop into irreversible damage if left untreated.
AFFF exposure may impact reproductive health and development.
Studies have suggested a potential association between PFAS exposure and reduced fertility, adverse pregnancy outcomes, and developmental issues in infants and children.
These issues can have a lasting impact on the health and development of mothers and babies exposed to AFFF.
PFAS chemicals in AFFF can compromise the immune system’s function, making individuals more susceptible to infections and autoimmune disorders.
Reduced immune function can lead to increased vulnerability to various illnesses.
Note that the extent of immune system damage depends on the length and intensity of PFAS exposure.
Several groups of individuals are at a higher risk of PFAS exposure due to the nature of their occupations or proximity to locations where AFFF firefighting foam products are heavily used.
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), the U.S. military helped develop aqueous film-forming foam (AFFF) in the 1960s.
Since then, military bases have been using toxic firefighting foam products for firefighting training exercises and operations.
Military firefighters and other military personnel exposed to AFFF during their service may be at an increased risk of developing associated health problems.
Civilian firefighters and first responders are frequently exposed to AFFF during firefighting and emergency response activities.
Even though they wear personal protective equipment and follow safety protocols, they are still at risk.
Repeated and prolonged occupational exposure to AFFF can lead to severe health complications.
AFFF is commonly used in airports and industrial settings to combat fuel-based fires.
Workers in these environments, including aircraft rescue and firefighting personnel and industrial firefighters, may face significant exposure to AFFF and its toxic chemicals.
These individuals should take the necessary safety precautions while working in these settings.
Residents living near areas with high AFFF usage may experience indirect exposure through contaminated water sources or environmental contamination.
These locations include fire training facilities, airports, chemical plants, and industrial sites.
PFAS contamination in these areas occurs when the foam enters water sources like rivers, lakes, and groundwater or is released into the air.
If you have been affected by AFFF exposure and subsequently developed cancer or related illnesses, it is crucial to consult with experienced firefighting foam lawyers to protect your rights and pursue justice.
They can help you hold responsible parties accountable and seek compensation for the damages caused by AFFF exposure.
Qualified firefighting foam attorneys are experienced in AFFF litigation and can provide guidance, support, and representation throughout the legal process.
They can assess your AFFF foam lawsuit, gather evidence, and navigate complex legal procedures on your behalf.
Firefighting foam cancer lawyers know the scientific research, regulations, and legal precedents of AFFF Lawsuits and its health effects and understand the hardships of a cancer diagnosis.
They will help you file an AFFF lawsuit against the responsible parties, where you may be eligible for compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.
There are more than 4,700 AFFF firefighting foam cases, including personal injury claims and municipal water contamination cases.
Individual AFFF lawsuits are consolidated into an AFFF firefighting foam MDL (multidistrict litigation).
The United States District Court for the District of South Carolina oversees the AFFF MDL.
Exposure to aqueous film-forming foam (AFFF) can have severe health consequences, including an increased risk of cancer and other related illnesses.
If you have been exposed to AFFF and developed cancer or other health issues, you may be eligible to file an AFFF Lawsuit.
Contact TorHoerman Law today for a free consultation.
You can also use the chatbot on this page to find out if you qualify for the firefighting foam cancer lawsuit instantly.
Our expert AFFF lawyers understand the importance of seeking justice and we promise fight for your legal rights.
We understand the complexities of firefighting foam cancer lawsuits and can provide reliable advice and representation throughout the legal process.
Reach out to us for more information.
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