Was My Cervical Cancer Caused by Contaminated Water at Camp Lejeune?

Contaminants have been found in water systems that supplied Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune in North Carolina decades ago. These toxic chemicals have caused numerous adverse health effects, including cervical cancer. (1)

During their daily lives, individuals on this base used contaminated water repeatedly, usually over long periods of time. People unknowingly drank the toxic water. They washed their fruits and vegetables in it and then cooked with it. People also washed clothes and bathed in it. All the time not knowing the water could make them sick. (2)  

Cancers, including cervical cancer, can result from exposure to substances that directly damage DNA. (3)  With cervical cancer, women may not even be aware they are sick because some may not experience any symptoms. (4)

Cancer is often explained simply as the result of cells growing out of control. (5) This cell growth is due to damage that has been done at a much deeper level. In some cases, “changes to certain genes…alter the way our cells function,” says the National Cancer Institute (NCI). (6) In cervical cancer, the DNA of genes in the cells of the cervix are where these changes occur.

Cervical Cancer Linked to Toxic Chemicals in Camp Lejeune Water

The chemicals found in the water at Camp Lejeune included trichloroethylene (TCE), tetrachloroethylene (PCE), benzene, and vinyl chloride. (7) 

TCE and PCE are industrial solvents used to degrease machinery. (8) (9)

  • TCE is a colorless liquid “created by chemical synthesis.” It is a known carcinogen. (10) 
  • PCE is a clear, odorous liquid. (11) PCE breaks down into TCE. (12)  

Repeated or long-term exposure to high doses of TCE, PCE, or both — as in the case for many people at Camp Lejeune — can lead to cervical cancer. (13)

Contaminated Water Impacts Pregnancy 

Even more disturbing is that exposure to TCE or PCE can have a very damaging effect on pregnant women and babies. Studies show adverse health effects from early exposure to these chemicals on unborn babies. These effects can continue to impact those babies later in life.

One study of civilian employees exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune concluded there was an increased risk of death from certain cancers. Another health study on pregnant women exposed to toxic water at the base indicated serious adverse health effects on fetuses and infants. (14) (15) 

An unrelated study looked at prenatal and early life exposures to toxic drinking water from a different water contamination incident. The study found, “individuals with early-life PCE exposure had an elevated risk of cancer, particularly cervical cancer,” reports Boston University’s School of Public Health. (16)

If you or a loved one developed cervical cancer after being exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune, contact us today for a free case evaluation.

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Cervical Cancer Lawsuits 

Many women who lived or worked on Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune were exposed to toxic chemicals present on base, causing them to develop cervical cancer.

Additionally, women who were exposed during their mother’s pregnancy are also eligible to file cases. In some instances, the families of women who died from this illness are forced to file the lawsuits themselves.

Cervical cancer is just one of the harmful health conditions caused by the toxic chemicals at Camp Lejeune. Although compensation for this exposure is the focus of many lawsuits filed on behalf of women across the U.S., there are other cancers recognized as being caused by the contaminated water. 

These cases are being reviewed and litigated now. As of June 2023, no awards or judgements have been made in connection with the Camp Lejeune water contamination. 

Don’t wait to discuss your claim with an attorney. There is a narrow window of opportunity for filing a claim, and that window is closing soon. Exercising your right to file a claim is vital to seeking any compensation you deserve.

Who Qualifies to File a Camp Lejeune Cervical Cancer Lawsuit?

If you have been diagnosed with cervical cancer, after suffering exposure to the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune, you can file a lawsuit. 

This is due to a new law, the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022, as part of the Honoring our PACT Act. It allows victims of water contamination at Camp Lejeune to file claims against the U.S. government in order to seek compensation for medical expenses, as well as your pain and suffering. (17)

People eligible to file claims must meet these criteria. You or your loved one must have: (18)

  • Lived, worked, or were otherwise present on the base between August 1953 and December 1987. 
  • Been exposed to the toxic water for “no less than 30 days” total, overall. 
  • Gotten diagnosed with cervical cancer or one of the other diseases linked with Camp Lejeune.

The same rules apply if you suffer from cervical cancer because your mother was exposed on base while she was pregnant with you. 

Seek justice for being exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune and developing cervical cancer. Contact us today to understand your legal rights.

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Legal Options for Victims of Camp Lejeune Water Contamination

If you were exposed to the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune and are suffering from serious side effects — like cervical cancer — you should obtain legal services as soon as possible.

You should work with attorneys who are knowledgeable, experienced, and compassionate, and who have handled complex litigations against large organizations and government agencies. They should also be able to demonstrate a favorable track-record in outcomes for their clients.

W&L has exactly this type of legal profile. We are experienced in toxic tort personal injury litigations. As a firm, we’ve spent nearly 40 years representing veterans, their families, and countless other clients. Today, our firm is a recognized leader in environmental litigation.

How W&L Can Help

W&L attorneys are dedicated to the fight for justice on behalf of our clients. Our attorneys are there to see your case through, from start to finish, with the right measure of compassion and tenacity.

We have a long history of successful outcomes for our clients. Here are a few examples of our results on their behalf: