Information on Diagnosing Asbestosis
Asbestosis is a long-term respiratory disease caused by exposure to harmful asbestos fibers that are inhaled. The disease can result in serious damage to your health if not properly diagnosed in time. When asbestos fibers are inhaled, they accumulate in your lungs, resulting in scarring of lung tissue and shortness of breath. Like other asbestos-related diseases, symptoms of asbestosis may not appear until many years after the initial exposure. If you have been exposed to asbestos and are experiencing the following symptoms please consult a doctor immediately for a proper diagnosis:
Symptoms and signs of asbestosis include:
Shortness of breath. The most prominent sign of asbestosis is shortness of breath. At first, the shortness of breath occurs only with physical exertion, but eventually it can occur even while you're resting.
Chest pain and coughing. You may also experience a persistent dry cough along with periodic chest pain as the condition progresses.
Finger deformity. Advanced cases of asbestosis can sometimes result in deformities of the finger called “clubbing,” where the fingertips spread out and become more rounded.
Weitz & Luxenberg is one of the nation’s leading asbestos litigation law firms. We are dedicated to providing the general public with accurate information regarding asbestos, the ailments that can result from asbestos exposure, and what can be done legally if you or a family member has developed mesothelioma. A Weitz & Luxenburg lawyer can help you get the reimbursement you need to help pay for essential medical treatment and hold the companies that made you ill accountable.
Because the symptoms of asbestosis are similar to many other forms of respiratory diseases, diagnosing the disease can be difficult and requires a variety of diagnostic tests. In order to make a definite diagnosis the following tests may be conducted:
- Chest X-ray. A chext X-ray is done to look for abnormalities in your lungs. Asbestosis will appear as excessive whiteness in your lung tissue. If the asbestosis is advanced, your entire lung may be affected, and have a honeycomb-like appearance.
- Computerized tomography (CT). CT scans combine a series of X-ray views taken from various different positions to produce cross-sectional images of the soft tissues and bones inside your body. These scans may help to detect asbestosis in its earlier stages, sometimes even before it shows up in an X-ray.
- High Resolution Computed Tomography (HRCT) — This is a special type of CT scan that produces high-resolution images of your lungs and the surrounding pleura. The pleura are often scarred following exposure to asbestos. These images are very helpful in determining which type of lung disease you have and whether or not occupational factors may have played a role. Having a HRCT is no different than having a standard CT scan. Both are performed on an open-air table and take only several minutes.
- Bronchoscopy — A bronchoscopy involves the passage of a flexible fiberoptic scope into your lungs to obtain fluid and sometimes tissue samples.
Many workers have come forward to say their work environment led to a diagnosis ofasbestosis from asbestos. If this has been your experience, our asbestos lawyers may be able to help you receive compensation for your health problems.
For over two decades, Weitz & Luxenberg has handled some of the most legally complicated and groundbreaking asbestos litigation in the country, winning many millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements along the way. Men and women diagnosed with mesothelioma or lung cancer caused by asbestos exposure or secondary exposure may be entitled to compensation from the companies responsible for their disease.
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