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Frequency Asked Questions

Depending on the circumstances, multiple parties can be held responsible for a slip and fall accident. For example, if you were visiting a friend at his or her apartment and you fell down the stairs, the landlord could be held responsible because they had a responsibility as a property owner to ensure the property was properly maintained.

If you were exposed to asbestos unknowingly, you may qualify. Contact a St. Louis mesothelioma lawyer at TorHoerman Law to discuss your options today.

About Mesothelioma

Malignant mesothelioma is rare cancer that can develop in the lungs, heart, abdomen, or testicles. Mesothelioma is an aggressive form of cancer, and the average life expectancy after a mesothelioma diagnosis is only 12 to 21 months. Roughly 3,000 people are diagnosed annually with mesothelioma.

Common Symptoms include:

  • chest pain
  • severe fatigue
  • shortness of breath.


If you believe that you or a loved one is suffering from malignant mesothelioma, read on to learn more about the disease, treatment options, and potential legal aid. You may qualify to participate in a mesothelioma lawsuit.


Common Cause of Mesothelioma in St. Louis?

Malignant mesothelioma develops in the mesothelium, the thin layer of tissues that surround the body’s internal organs and cavities. Symptoms of mesothelioma take years to appear, usually from 10 to 50 years after initial contact, making it difficult to find a specific cause in individual diagnoses. While medical researchers are exploring additional causes, almost every mesothelioma case comes from exposure to the same chemical — asbestos.

Asbestos is a mineral that was popular in United States commercial and industrial sites. Exposure and inhalation of the mineral is the only definite known cause for developing malignant mesothelioma. Roughly 90 percent of mesothelioma cases have been tied to patients breathing in asbestos fibers, and it’s estimated the percentage is higher. Other potential causes of mesothelioma are exposure to high aspect ratio nanoparticles (HARNs), radiation, zeolites, and simian virus 40.


Asbestos Exposure

Mesothelioma is caused by the inhalation of asbestos fibers. The tiny mineral fibers can lodge themselves into one’s lungs, heart, and abdomen linings. This leads to severe inflammation and eventual changes at the cellular level. These changes can, directly and indirectly, shift one’s DNA, leading to cancer-causing mutations.


What is Asbestos?

Asbestos is a group of six naturally occurring fibrous minerals that are resistant to heat, fire, and electricity. The minerals were popular in the U.S. for commercial and industrial buildings and in certain commercial products. Asbestos use has declined in recent decades, but the minerals remain in many older houses, schools, and public buildings. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and several other federal agencies have strict laws developed to prevent asbestos exposure.


Asbestos Exposure in St. Louis

Asbestos exposure typically happens in occupation spaces, but it can also come from primary and secondary exposure in homes, construction sites, schools, and other public buildings.

The occupational spaces most frequently linked to asbestos exposure are asbestos mines, auto body dealers and shops, demolition and construction sites, insulation installation, firefighters, and machinery-heavy workspaces. Secondhand exposure to asbestos can also happen when someone comes into contact with clothes or other materials covered in tiny asbestos particles. Common household items have also been found to contain asbestos including talcum powders, potting soil, and paint.

While most household items are no longer legally allowed to contain asbestos, there are some instances in which asbestos still exists within those products.


How Does Asbestos Exposure Cause Mesothelioma?

Mesothelioma is usually caused by a person inhaling asbestos fibers that become lodged into the lungs, heart, or abdomen. These fibers cause harmful inflammation that develops into mesothelioma tumors. The three common cancers that result from asbestos exposure are peritoneal mesothelioma in the abdomen, pleural mesothelioma in the lungs, and pericardial mesothelioma in the heart.

Most medical researchers have concurred that asbestos exposure can damage DNA both directly and indirectly. Asbestos directly interferes with the mitosis process during cell division, causing cellular damage and mutations. Indirectly, asbestos exposure can cause mesothelial cells to create mutagenic reactive oxygen and nitrogen which also causes mutations at the cellular level.


St. Louis mesothelioma lawyer

Symptoms of Mesothelioma

Common signs of mesothelioma are often mistaken for other conditions, leading to diagnosis errors and delays. Detecting mesothelioma early on is the only way for a successful prognosis and to extend patients’ life expectancies. Common mesothelioma signs and symptoms are:

  • Abdominal pain or swelling
  • Chest pain
  • Difficulty swallowing or breathing
  • Severe fatigue
  • Anemia
  • Frequent coughing


St. Louis, Missouri’s significant industrial history has also made the city a center for asbestos cases. St. Louis was home to a number of industries and companies known for using and manufacturing products containing asbestos, making St. Louis asbestos cases fairly common. Workers at the following companies and or job sites might be at risk for asbestos cancer.


Asbestos Exposure Statistics in Missouri

Missouri workers and residents might be at risk of asbestos exposure. Asbestos exposure can lead to serious health issues including mesothelioma and asbestos-related lung cancers. If you live or work in Missouri, it’s important to become familiar with Missouri asbestos exposure and Missouri mesothelioma statistics.

  • 748 Missouri residents died from mesothelioma between 1999 and 2015.
  • According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), St. Louis County has the highest rate of asbestos-related deaths, with an estimated 835 deaths between 1999 and 2013.
  • Missouri’s mesothelioma mortality rate is about 7.5 people per every one million, according to the CDC.
  • According to the U.S. Geological Survey, Missouri has four known asbestos occurrences. Two were former mines and two are natural deposits in the Ozark Mountain region.


St. Louis Workplace Asbestos Exposure

The most common locations where individuals are exposed to asbestos in the St. Louis area include:

Several Missouri-based manufacturers produced products containing asbestos. GAF Corporation later renamed Ruberoid, produced asbestos-containing roofing materials at its St. Louis plant. CertainTeed produced asbestos-cement pipes at its St. Louis location. Both companies were found to have improperly disposed of hazardous asbestos waste.

Even today, some automotive manufacturers still use asbestos in parts such as brake linings. Mack Truck Assembly plant in Joplin is known to have used parts containing asbestos, putting workers and mechanics at risk.

Asbestos has been found in several Missouri mines including a manganese mine in Winona, a copper mine in Astoria, and an unnamed mine in the Mark Twain National Forest.

Several older breweries used asbestos in their buildings and equipment. Former workers at Columbia, Empire, and M.K. Goetze brewing companies could be at risk.

Asbestos Superfund Sites in Missouri

Two of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Superfund List sites are in Missouri. These are places that the government-mandated cleanups due to the presence of asbestos and other toxins:

The Independence-based plant was found to have asbestos siding, construction debris, PCBs, metals, and other toxic materials on its 4,000-acre property. The EPA mandated extensive cleanup efforts at the site in 1989. The area was declared to not need further action in 2009.

Two two sites, located roughly four miles apart, were used to convert and process uranium and thorium. The materials and decay products contaminated the surrounding areas. Cleanup was mandated in 2001.

Filing a St. Louis Mesothelioma Lawsuit

A mesothelioma lawsuit can help you or a loved one claim compensation for injuries, medical bills, death, travel costs, and other expenses. Reach out to an experienced St. Louis mesothelioma lawyer to build a successful St. Louis mesothelioma lawsuit. To file your lawsuit, you will need to provide:

  • Medical records that document all asbestos-related suffering
  • Records of work history that show that you or a loved one worked for a company noted in an asbestos lawsuit
  • Financial records detailing the financial hardships you and your family have faced due to asbestos exposure and mesothelioma
  • Any testimonies that help prove that exposure to asbestos resulted in mesothelioma


Hiring a St. Louis Mesothelioma Lawyer

If you or your family members were diagnosed with mesothelioma after being exposed to asbestos, you could be eligible for financial and legal compensation. Contact an experienced St. Louis Mesothelioma Lawyer at TorHoerman today to learn more about your asbestos lawsuit options. TorHoerman Law offers free no-obligation consultations with an experienced St. Louis mesothelioma lawyer from our team for all potential clients. Contact us today to learn more about how TorHoerman law,  your St. Louis mesothelioma law firm, can help you.

Filing a St. Louis Mesothelioma Lawsuit

The first step before starting the legal process of filing a St. Louis Mesothelioma lawsuit is to familiarize yourself with the steps of civil litigation.

You should also do everything in your power to mitigate injury as soon as possible after you discover your illness.

Choosing a St. Louis mesothelioma lawyer is also an important part of the process. There are many benefits of hiring a personal injury lawyer to represent you in your St. Louis mesothelioma lawsuit. But you want to be sure to choose a St. Louis mesothelioma lawyer who is experienced in both personal injury law and  chemical exposure law.

Missouri statute of limitations limits the amount of time you have to file a lawsuit after your injury, so do not wait to seek legal aid from a St. Louis mesothelioma lawyer.

After choosing an attorney, you should begin the process of gathering evidence to support your claim. Your St. Louis mesothelioma lawyer will help you determine liability – the party or parties who are responsible for your injuries and losses.

These losses are referred to as damages. In a St. Louis mesothelioma lawsuit, it is likely that you will demand both compensatory damages and punitive damages.

The total cost you expect to receive to cover your damages is your compensationAt TorHoerman Law, all of our St. Louis mesothelioma lawyers operate on a contingency fee basis. So, we are always as dedicated as our clients to seeing the best possible outcome in all of our St. Louis mesothelioma lawsuits.


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