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New Orleans Asbestos Blog

New study may change lung cancer screening recommendations

Louisiana has had one of the highest rates of lung cancer among the states in the nation for many years. Some residents blame 'Chemical Alley,' as the stretch of the Mississippi River south of Baton Rouge is known due to the high concentration of chemical plants. Others may factor in the shipyards and factories that used asbestos for so many decades.

Whatever the reasons, the risks remain evident. A medical journal focused on chest medicine recently held its annual conference in New Orleans and discussed effective strategies of lessening the disease's effect. One new effort is to catch lung cancer earlier when treatment is more likely to be completely effective at eliminating the disease.

Talcum powder maker recalls lot due to asbestos

Concerns about asbestos exposure were centered around exposure in the workplace for most of the 20th century. The substance has been used in homes and kitchens, but it is generally considered unsafe when the solid tiles or tools begin to send dust into the air to settle in people's lungs and other organs.

There are more recent concerns that asbestos may appear in this dangerous form in consumer products like toiletries. A major distributor of talcum powder has been fighting allegations that their product contained asbestos from its mineral source, and the firm was aware of it.

How do doctors discover mesothelioma?

Mesothelioma is a difficult disease to live with, and it is also a difficult disease to detect. Cancer that affects the lining around the lungs and stomach resembles many other ailments, especially in the early stages, which leads to its later detection.

  • How do doctors detect mesothelioma?

Many of the physical warning signs are similar to other problems, like musculoskeletal distention or chest pain. As a result, physicians generally do not suspect mesothelioma unless a patient history includes exposure to environmental causes.

  • What are the causes that generally indicate mesothelioma?

Does Johnson & Johnson baby powder really have asbestos in it?

Johnson & Johnson, manufacturer of various types of baby products, has come under scrutiny for producing products that could be dangerous to babies and users. Recently, the company initiated a massive recall of one of their most widely used products, baby powder. The company took this step after Food and Drug Administration testing revealed there were trace amounts of asbestos in a bottle.

The company pulled 33,000 bottles of baby powder off the shelves as a result of this finding. When a company produces something that could ultimately cause harm to consumers, it could be liable for the harm caused to users. As you may know, Johnson & Johnson has already faced extensive legal action for products that supposedly contribute to the development of cancer.

Scientists work to connect talcum powder with cancer

Liability in cases of illness is not always easy to prove. It may feel like a case of food poisoning after going out to eat. The cause may seem obvious to you, but it may not hold up in court.

This is because liability is the important issue when looking for financial damages after an illness or injury. Did someone have a responsibility to keep consumers safe and failed to fulfill it? Was someone able to stop the problem and didn't take the opportunity?

Louisiana residents put pressure on factories in Chemical Alley

New Orleans had a Pirates' Alley and a Dutch Alley, but the city is better known for its streets and avenues now. The nearby Mississippi River Valley has been called several names ending in "Alley," and none of them are positive. Cancer Alley, Death Alley and Chemical Alley are all common monikers for an area with a high incidence of lung cancer and other respiratory problems.

Many observers believe that this problem was caused by decades of refineries, petrochemical plants and other industries operating near the river and releasing emissions into the water and air. Some plants operate right next to neighborhoods and schools.

Asbestos may still cause medical problems

The word asbestos has become a byword for something suspiciously dangerous. The last five decades have featured the substance on lists of hazardous materials. But much of human history before then featured asbestos cookware, insulation or industrial materials.

In many ways, the advantages of asbestos in materials science are the same reason it is dangerous to humans. The word covers a variety of materials that are strong, long-lasting and resistant to fire and heat. But the crystal fibers that break loose from solid tiles or panels are long-lasting enough to stay in the lungs and other thoracic organs of the human body.

How can mesothelioma patients get help?

Mesothelioma is a difficult burden to bear. The disease is hard to detect and hard to treat, as many people who have struggled with it can attest. But hope is certainly not lost with a diagnosis. Most patients are concerned with the answer to one question: What are my chances?

What is the survival rate for mesothelioma?

What does OSHA have to say about asbestos exposure?

Like others here in Louisiana and elsewhere, you may think that concerns about asbestos no longer exist. After all, no one uses it anymore, right? Unfortunately, that isn't always the case. If you work in certain industries, you could still suffer from exposure without the proper equipment, training and personal protective gear.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration continues to warn employers and employees of the dangers of breathing in or swallowing asbestos dust or fibers. The problem with this toxic substance is that it can take decades for any associated illnesses to manifest. This is one reason why some people receive diagnoses asbestos-related illnesses, such as mesothelioma, now when they were exposed decades earlier at work.

Another large verdict casts doubt on talcum powder

Residents of Louisiana are all too familiar with major public health concerns. The industries based along the lower Mississippi River Valley have earned the area the unfortunate name of "Chemical Alley," and thousands of workers who operated shipyards and construction companies faced exposure to asbestos. The substance is thought to be connected to mesothelioma, a particularly difficult form of cancer to treat.

Meanwhile, a new threat has been exposed over the last year or so across the country, and some people in the Bayou State are feeling some of the pain. A major health products manufacturer is under fire in several jurisdictions for the dangers inherent in talcum powder. Talc has been used to absorb moisture in personal hygiene for decades, but many of the industrial sources for the powder have been found to be contaminated with asbestos.