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New Orleans Asbestos Blog

How are occupational diseases diagnosed?

Going to work each day should not be worrisome. You shouldn't have to think about possibly developing a disease that could disable you. But, some professions are like this. There are some inherently dangerous professions out there that can cause many workers to become sick and disabled. Some of those include mining, firefighting and construction. So, how are occupational disease diagnosed?

There are times when it can be difficult for doctors to pinpoint and diagnose an occupational disease. This can lead to unnecessary tests and inappropriate referrals to doctors in other specialties. When this happens, the opportunity to protect the patient is missed by his or her medical team.

Common places asbestos is found in the home

As of 1989, the use of asbestos in new items is illegal based on a ban set forth by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Items created prior to 1989 can still use asbestos. One of the most common places asbestos was used was in materials to build houses. Asbestos can no longer be used in materials to build homes but it is still found in older homes across the country, even in Louisiana.

If you live in an older home, you might want to know where you should look for potential asbestos. If the home was built between the years of 1930 to 1950, it's quite possible that it has asbestos insulation. You should have the home inspected to determine if this is the case.

Louisiana denigrated by tort reform group

The American Tort Reform Foundation (ATRF) has unflattering words for Louisiana, saying that its courts are unbalanced, the litigation unnecessary and the governor an instigator.

The Foundation blames the governor for encouraging lawyers to file lawsuits over decades-old actions by energy companies.

Statistics on Louisiana's high rate of lung cancer

Lung cancer causes one-third of the cancer deaths in Louisiana. The state's mortality and incidence rates of the disease are much higher than rates throughout the rest of the country. From 2009 to 2013, the national average of lung cancer was 57.3 per 100,000 people. In Louisiana, that jumped to 71.3 per 100,000 people.

The national average of people who died each year because of lung cancer was 46 per 200,000. The average in Louisiana was 56.4 per 100,000.

Recurrence after your mesothelioma treatment

If you worked for years in the Louisiana shipyards, the fear of a mesothelioma diagnosis may have haunted you. Perhaps you watched some of your former coworkers fall ill and succumb to lung cancer, mesothelioma, asbestosis or another disease related to asbestos exposure, but you held out hope that you had escaped that dreadful fate.

Even when the first symptoms appeared, you may have put off going to the doctor, refusing to believe you were going to be another statistic. By the time you finally received the diagnosis of mesothelioma, the disease was already pretty well advanced. The time for denial was over, so you began treatment, knowing the odds weren't in your favor. Now you may be wondering what to expect when your treatments end.

Lung cancer: A real risk for some workers

Lung cancer is a career hazard for some industries. Ship builders and people who work on ship maintenance are example of workers who might be more prone to this type of cancer simply because of their work conditions. We realize that nobody should face the prospect of a lifelong disease because of the conditions that they are forced to work in just to earn a living for themselves and their dependents.

In the industries that have these risks, it is imperative that the employers take adequate steps to ensure that the risk is reduced to a minimum. There isn't any reason for workers to be placed in situations that result in unnecessary exposure to risks just because an employer wants to save money.

How likely is ovarian cancer related to the use of baby powder?

Many recent news stories have been been circulating about the potential correlation between the use of talcum powder and an increased cancer risk. The American Cancer Society (ACS) has even issued a statement warning those concerned about potential risks to discontinue using the product until further research is conducted.

While medical experts aren't yet 100 percent convinced that an individual's use of talcum powder is potentially cancer causing, many lawsuits have recently been settled based on that assumption.

How to avoid asbestos exposure

Asbestos exposure is not a thing of the past. The use of asbestos in construction is a thing of the past though. Asbestos is still around, especially in old commercial buildings and old homes. If you live or work in a structure that has asbestos present you will likely want to know how to avoid exposure to this harmful product that causes mesothelioma and lung cancer.

One of the most important tips you can live by is that if you aren't sure if an object is made of asbestos, leave it alone until it can be verified that it is or is not made of asbestos. It is impossible to know just by looking at floor tiles or ceiling tiles if they contain asbestos.

Study finds that half of cancer deaths caused by behavior

A new study of cancer in the United States has found that close to half of all cancer deaths in the country are due to the unhealthy behaviors of the patients. You might think that this is quite high but it's actually less than estimates from 35 years ago. The reasons for the drop in numbers are a change in society and research methods.

According to the study, some 45 percent of deaths caused by cancer and 42 percent of diagnosed cases were caused by what the researchers call modifiable factors. To put it matter-of-factly, these risks are those that are not inherited by the patient but instead can be avoided by changing behavior like smoking, sun exposure, drinking and not eating a healthy diet.

How is mesothelioma diagnosed?

A common question that many people have who have worked in industries that used to feature asbestos is: How is mesothelioma diagnosed? Mesothelioma is a disease commonly found in people who have worked in the construction and shipbuilding industries from decades ago. Today, we will take a look at how this debilitating disease is diagnosed.

The diagnosis process almost always begins because a patient discusses possible symptoms of the disease as well as their occupational history with their doctor. What makes this disease so difficult to diagnose is the fact that the symptoms typically do not develop until it is in its late stages, leading to patients becoming sick very quickly.