You may have been feeling “off” for months or years before doctors diagnosed you with a terminal illness. You also may have had a gut feeling that your health condition was somehow related to your job, especially because you worked in the same place for decades and heard of coworkers who were experiencing similar symptoms. If you worked in a shipyard, a factory, auto mechanics shop or home renovation, you may have been at risk for asbestos exposure and illnesses such as mesothelioma.
Your North Carolina employer, like all employers throughout the country, is obligated to provide proper training, necessary information and available equipment to help you stay safe on the job. Sadly, not all employers fulfill their obligations and many workers have suffered incurable asbestos injuries because of it. A mesothelioma diagnosis undoubtedly changes your life.
Treatment options and doctor recommendations
You may be one of many people whose first symptoms of illness included a nagging cough, extreme fatigue, and chest or abdominal discomfort. If you ingested microscopic asbestos particles in the workplace, some of the fibers may have lodged in your lungs, thus causing mesothelioma. After reviewing your symptoms and running tests, your doctor and medical team must determine a best course of action for treatment.
The following list includes key factors most doctors will consider when developing a treatment plan for a patient with mesothelioma:
- Patient’s age
- Normal activity level of the patient
- Whether any additional adverse health conditions exist
- Patient’s gender
- Size of tumors
- Whether surgical removal might completely remove a tumor
In speaking with your physician, you’d also likely discuss how advanced your specific condition appears to be. If you’re in the early stages of mesothelioma, a more aggressive treatment plan might be possible as opposed to late stages of a disease, in which case, the average oncologist might suggest palliative care only.
Malignant mesothelioma often recurs after treatment
As with many types of cancer, mesothelioma often recurs after a patient receives treatment. Your medical team can develop a treatment plan that is unique and based on your specific symptoms, needs and ultimate treatment goals. As your illness progresses, it’s likely that you would need additional support from your family and friends, as well as various healthcare providers.
Many people in North Carolina and beyond who have suffered similar injuries have pursued litigation through the civil justice system to seek financial recovery for their losses. Court-awarded compensation often helps people cover their medical expenses and other costs associated with a specific injury.