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ASBESTOS NEWS DAILY - PLEURAL MESOTHELIOMA
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Pleural Mesothelioma


 
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Pleural Mesothelioma –Mesothelioma Symptoms – Mesothelioma Cancer

Mesothelioma: A Cancer That Can Hide In Your Body For Up To 50 Years

Saturday, 13 March 2010 00:40TobiRaikkonen

Mesothelioma CancerMesothelioma Cancer

Mesothelioma is a type of cancer caused by exposure to the carcinogen asbestos. Asbestos was widely used a few decades ago in construction when its ill effects weren't known yet.

Mesothelioma symptoms

Most patients diagnosed withmesothelioma are well into old age due to the fact that once contact with asbestos has occurred, the symptoms start to show anywhere between 15 to 50 years later. Because of this, it is almost impossible to catch the disease in its early stages. To properly identify the disease, x-rays of the chest and pulmonary function tests are required.

3 types ofmesothelioma cancers

There are three known forms ofmesothelioma:Pleural,Peritoneal, and Pericardialmesothelioma. The most common isPleuralmesothelioma which occurs in more than half the cases, second is Peritoneal and lastlyPericardial which is very rare (only about 5 percent ofmeshothelioma cases). Each has its own unique set of symptoms:

  • Pleuralmesothelioma: Coughing of blood, chest palpitations, tiredness and difficulty breathing.
  • Peritonealmesothelioma: Tiredness, rapid weight loss, vomiting, diarrhea, tummy aches and anemia.
  • Pericardialmesothelioma: Chest and heart palpitations, shortness of breath and tiredness.

Mesothelioma in the media

Mesothelioma cases are usually heavily publicized andmesothelioma lawyers take them very seriously due to the huge payouts from settlements by defending companies.

Additionally,mesothelioma can affect anyone. Since the disease is transferred by contact with harmful asbestos chemicals, no one is safe, no matter how fit or strong their immune system may be. Such is the case of all-star athleteMerlin Olsen, a Hall of Fame defensive tackle with the Los Angeles Rams who died yesterday frommesothelioma caused by exposure to asbestos. No one knows how long Merlin Olsen was fighting the disease, as thelife expectancy ofmesothelioma patients vary greatly from individual to individual.

http://www.ozcarguide.com/health/health-a-z/cancer/2339-mesothelioma-cancer

 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Asbestos Exposure – Asbestos Related Diseases

Asbestos Exposure

by Dave Barker

veteranstoday.com /2010/04/27/

The Department of Veterans Affairs has stated there are currently 25 million Americans who have served in the armed forces of theUnited States. Possible millions of theseAmerican veterans were exposed to toxic asbestos during their military or naval service. Asbestos was used by every military branch.As asbestos was highly regarded for its heat resistance and fireproofing capabilities. Asbestos was so valued that the military andNavy mandated widespread usage before it was phased out during the 1970’s.

Most used the asbestos products for insulation purposes, as than 300 products containing asbestos were used by primarily by the Navy from the 1930’s through the 1970’s. Every ship and shipyard built by the Navy before themid-70’s was fitted with numerous asbestos containing materials. To a lesser degree the Army and Air Force used asbestos.

What were the levels of risk for asbestos exposure on ourNaval vessels? In a word, high! The asbestos products were extensively used in engine and boiler rooms and other areas below deck for fire safety purposes. Navy personnel who worked below deck were heavily exposed to asbestos, but all sailors are at risk, as this deadly compound was used in navigation rooms, sleeping quarters, and mess halls, as decks and pipe coverings all contained asbestos.

It must be understood, no portion of a Naval ship was asbestos free between the 1930’s and mid 1970’s, making Navy veterans and shipyard workers one of the most at risk groups for developing asbestos related diseases. I have had clients who were told by the VA rating specialists that other than engineering rates were not exposed, that is simply not true. In multiple cases I have shown where deck rates wore asbestos gloves when their duty was hotshellman on the gun mounts, or asbestos suits on damage control duties.

Of all occupations exposed to asbestos, veterans account for 30% of allmesothelioma cancer patients. Thus more than 30% of Americans suffering withmesothelioma (a cancer of the internal lining of the lungs, abdomen, and heart) were exposed to asbestos during their military or naval service.

Veterans who served between up to the 1970’s have a great risk of developing asbestosis, cancer and other related disease. Navy personnel and workers employed in shipyards through the 1970’s hold a greatpossiblity of developing a disease caused by asbestos exposure.

Veterans with an asbestos related illness should contact a veteran’s service officer and file their claims. It is important you select a VSO who will think outside of the VA box, especially on these type conditions.

The veteran must provide proof that their disease is asbestos related and that exposure occurred during military service. The burden of proof is always on the veteran, in this case, due to mind sets, the proof is difficult even though it is totally obvious.

The Department of Veteran Affairs recognizes asbestos as well asmesothelioma as a service connected disability.

Even when diagnosed withmesothelioma which all cases are caused by asbestos exposure, the VA does not consider is a presumptive, nor always approve the claim for disability compensation. The veteran must provide evidence themesothelioma ‘is as likely as not’ to have been caused by exposure to asbestos while in service.

Diagnosis of asbestos related diseases is difficult as many symptoms are identical with other disorders. Symptoms range from respiratory problems as well as chest pain, thus asbestos related conditions are frequently misdiagnosed. This causes the condition to spread. Similarpleuralmesothelioma a common form of asbestos cancers, has symptoms such as a chronic cough, night sweats, and fever, which are frequently misdiagnosed as pneumonia or the flu. As a result the cancer becomes active and spreads.

Mesothelioma treatment is available at the VAMC. VA physicians and clinicians are specialty trained. The local VA may have to send the veterans to another facility, but they will make sure the condition is monitored and treated properly.

You may find valuable information on my website:
http://davebarker.portalone.us/

http://www.veteranstoday.com/2010/04/27/veterans-for-change-weekly-report-2/


 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Asbestos Exposure – Mesothelioma and Women

 

Mesothelioma Symptoms Target Women's Health

Written by Amy Wister   

Friday, 07 May 2010 04:51

Mesothelioma is a very rare form of cancer that develops in the membranes or protective sacs surrounding various organs of the body. These membranes are referred to as themesothelium and theyprotects organs by producing a type of liquid which allows for mobility of the organs. Specifically, in the case of the lungs, themesothelium fluid allows ease of movement when breathing. Mesothelioma cancer can begin anywhere in themesothelium and can be either benign or cancerous.Exposure to asbestos fibers is a known cause ofmesothelioma.

Asbestos is resistant to heat and has been used as the main material in roofing, waterproofing compounds, flooring and insulation. Its versatile nature made it a useful component in various products on the market, but it is extremely dangerous if inhaled, even in very small amounts. Inhaled asbestos fibers pass through the respiratory tract and come into contact with linings of the lungs which can result inpleuralmesothelioma. Ingestion of asbestos fibers can affect other linings in the abdominal cavity which results in peritonealmesothelioma. The real tragedy of asbestosmesothelioma is that it usually takes many years for symptoms to develop.

The signs ofmesothelioma are typically weight loss with no change in diet, extreme tiredness, difficulty swallowing, hoarse or husky voice, difficulty breathing,a cough that lasts for an extended period of time, chest pain or back pain, extreme sweating and recurring fever. Peritonealmesothelioma commonly affects the bowel, liver and spleen an often shows signs similar to other bowel related diseases. The first symptoms are typically pain in the abdomen, constipation or diarrhea, an increase in the size of the belly area, nausea, vomiting, fever and anemia.

It is important for an individual to seek medical care if they have had any of these symptoms or have been exposed to asbestos earlier in their life. Mesothelioma takes time to develop so the exposure may have occurred as long ago as 50 years earlier. A trained cancer specialist is the best person to diagnosismesothelioma.

Mesothelioma symptoms may occur many months before the disease is detected by a medical professional.Pleuralmesothelioma is the most common form ofmesothelioma and represents two thirds of all themesothelioma cases reported. The pleura lining of the lungs and chest are the areas affected bypleuralmesothelioma.

Asbestos is still found almost everywhere, at home, at work, or in public buildings. Workers involved in building demolition should take extra care and precautions to avoid contact with asbestos through inhalation or ingestion. The low rate ofmesothelioma cases detected over the past 20 years is increasing as more individuals develop symptoms and seek medical attention.

In theUnited States almost 2,000 new cases ofmesothelioma are detected each year. Mesothelioma cancer has historically occurred mostly in men because they were typically the ones involved in activities that required the use of asbestos. Industrial workers, miners, railroad workers, and those involved in the construction and insulation industries were most susceptible. Most recently, the incidence ofmesothelioma in women has increased as we begin to learn more about how asbestos fibers remained in clothing, automobiles, furniture, and affected an industrial worker’s entire household.

 

Author of this article:Amy Wister

 

http://www.release-news.com/index.php/health-a-fitness/6543-mesothelioma-symptoms-target-womens-health.html
 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Asbestos Exposure – Asbestos Lung Cancer

 

Mesothelioma and Lung Cancer Rates Rise Worldwide

Posted on Friday, June 04, 2010

IARC MesotheliomaA new report from the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a part of the World Health Organization, states that lung cancer together with related thoracic cancers including malignantpleuralmesothelioma are on the rise worldwide.

According to the IARC,1.61 million cases of lung cancer andmesothelioma were diagnosed worldwide in 2008.  Lung and asbestos cancers also accounted for more deaths than any other types of cancer, claiming the lives of 1.38 million people. Taken together, lung cancer andmesothelioma comprised 18.2 percent of all cancer deaths in 2008.

Althoughmesothelioma is a relatively rare cancer, affecting an estimated 2,000 to 3,000 Americans annually, it is especially aggressive. Pleuralmesothelioma (affecting the lining around the lungs)and peritonealmesothelioma (affecting the lining of the abdomen) are the most common types.   All types ofmesothelioma are caused by asbestos.

Industries in which asbestos use was once common, including the shipping industry and various construction trades, account for the majority of cases ofmesothelioma, which can occur years after the person is exposed to asbestos.  Mesothelioma rates on the rise in many poorer nations where lax asbestos regulations and continued asbestos imports (most notably fromCanada) continue to put workers at risk. 

Mesothelioma is not the only type of cancer that has been linked to asbestos exposure.  Inhalation of asbestos has also been implicated in both small cell and non-small cell lung cancers.   In 2009, another IARC study published in the British Medical Journal, The Lancet Oncology, linked asbestos to some throat and ovarian cancers.  According to the National Cancer Institute, asbestos can also increase the risk for kidney, esophageal and gallbladder cancers.

The IARC study estimates that 13.2 million people worldwide will die of cancer annually by the year 2030.  Because asbestos-linked cancers can take 20 to 50 years to develop,mesothelioma and other asbestos related cancers are expected to comprise an increasingly larger percentage of cancer deaths for the next 25 years.

Sources:

Landau, Elizabeth. “WHO predicts 21 million annual cancer cases by 2030”, June 2, 2010, CNN.
Drummond, Katie. “5 Key Warnings in theWHO’s New Cancer Report”, June 1, 2010.Politics Daily.
Straif, Kurtet all. “A review of human carcinogens-Part C: metals, arsenic, dusts, andfibres”, May 15 2009, The Lancet Oncology, Volume 10, Issue 5, pp. 453-454.

  

© Surviving Mesothelioma and Cancer Monthly.  All rights reserved.

 

http://www.survivingmesothelioma.com/news/view.asp?ID=00923


 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Asbestos Exposure – Mesothelioma Cancer

 

Mesothelioma Symptoms Target Women's Health

Written by Amy Wister   

Friday, 07 May 2010 04:51

Mesothelioma is a very rare form of cancer that develops in the membranes or protective sacs surrounding various organs of the body. These membranes are referred to as themesothelium and theyprotects organs by producing a type of liquid which allows for mobility of the organs. Specifically, in the case of the lungs, themesothelium fluid allows ease of movement when breathing. Mesothelioma cancer can begin anywhere in themesothelium and can be either benign or cancerous. Exposure to asbestos fibers is a known cause ofmesothelioma.

Asbestos is resistant to heat and has been used as the main material in roofing, waterproofing compounds, flooring and insulation. Its versatile nature made it a useful component in various products on the market, but it is extremely dangerous if inhaled, even in very small amounts. Inhaled asbestos fibers pass through the respiratory tract and come into contact with linings of the lungs which can result inpleuralmesothelioma. Ingestion of asbestos fibers can affect other linings in the abdominal cavity which results in peritonealmesothelioma. The real tragedy of asbestosmesothelioma is that it usually takes many years for symptoms to develop.

The signs ofmesothelioma are typically weight loss with no change in diet, extreme tiredness, difficulty swallowing, hoarse or husky voice, difficulty breathing,a cough that lasts for an extended period of time, chest pain or back pain, extreme sweating and recurring fever. Peritonealmesothelioma commonly affects the bowel, liver and spleen an often shows signs similar to other bowel related diseases. The first symptoms are typically pain in the abdomen, constipation or diarrhea, an increase in the size of the belly area, nausea, vomiting, fever and anemia.

It is important for an individual to seek medical care if they have had any of these symptoms or have been exposed to asbestos earlier in their life. Mesothelioma takes time to develop so the exposure may have occurred as long ago as 50 years earlier. A trained cancer specialist is the best person to diagnosismesothelioma.

Mesothelioma symptoms may occur many months before the disease is detected by a medical professional.Pleuralmesothelioma is the most common form ofmesothelioma and represents two thirds of all themesothelioma cases reported. The pleura lining of the lungs and chest are the areas affected by pleuralmesothelioma.


Asbestos is still found almost everywhere, at home, at work, or in public buildings. Workers involved in building demolition should take extra care and precautions to avoid contact with asbestos through inhalation or ingestion. The low rate ofmesothelioma cases detected over the past 20 years is increasing as more individuals develop symptoms and seek medical attention.

In theUnited States almost 2,000 new cases ofmesothelioma are detected each year. Mesothelioma cancer has historically occurred mostly in men because they were typically the ones involved in activities that required the use of asbestos. Industrial workers, miners, railroad workers, and those involved in the construction and insulation industries were most susceptible. Most recently, the incidence ofmesothelioma in women has increased as we begin to learn more about how asbestos fibers remained in clothing, automobiles, furniture, and affected an industrial worker’s entire household.

 

Author of this article:Amy Wister

 

http://www.release-news.com/index.php/health-a-fitness/6543-mesothelioma-symptoms-target-womens-health.html
 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Asbestos Trades – $9.036 Million Mesothelioma Award

$9.936M Awarded to Son of Merchant Mariner for Household Exposure to Asbestos

45-Year-Old ManDiagnosed with Mesothelioma in 2007, 35 YearsAfter Exposure to Asbestos Dust on Father’s Work Clothes

BALTIMORE,Md. — January 27, 2010 — A Baltimore City jury yesterday awarded $9.936 million to the son of a merchant mariner who suffers withmesothelioma as a result of being exposed to asbestos dust contained in his father’s work clothes more than three decades ago.

The plaintiff, Leroy Conway, Jr., was just ten years old when his father went to work aboard the S.S. Baltimore Trader, an oil tanker owned and operated by ATTRANSCO, Inc. During the elderConway’s 1974-1977 tenure as an engineman on the vessel, he worked in areas known to contain asbestos, and his uniform would become laden with asbestos particles and dust. Over a three-year period, his young son was exposed to the deadly asbestos that permeated the father’s work clothes, which were laundered in the family’s home.

The younger Mr. Conway, now a 45-year-old husband and father of three children, was diagnosed with malignantpleuralmesothelioma in May 2007. He has undergone radical surgery to remove a lung, and is unable to work.

The jury found that ATTRANSCO acted with negligence in its duty to warn and protect its workers — and by extension, their families — from the harmful effects of asbestos and asbestos-containing products installed on their vessels. ATTRANSCO was the sole defendant in the case.

Witnesses for ATTRANSCO, which included the captain of the S.S. Baltimore Trader during the time in question, admitted that it was known that asbestos was present on the vessel. However, it was stated that neither the company nor the captain were made aware of the dangers of asbestos until 1980 at the earliest, and therefore could not have been responsible for Mr. Conway’s injuries.

The jury rejected the defense argument, agreeing with plaintiff that ATTRANSCO should have know of the hazards of asbestos and acted to protect workers well before the elder Conway’s tenure on the S.S. Baltimore Trader. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) commenced regulation of asbestos exposure in 1971, and the harmful effects of asbestos had been documented by industry as early as the 1940s.

Mr. Conway, along with his wife, Yolanda, and mother,Berlena, traveled fromTexas for the 10-day trial. Mr. Conway and his mother both testified. Mr. Conway’s wife was too grief stricken to sit on the stand. All three were in court when the verdict was read. The jury awarded Mr. Conway $9.3 million for pain and suffering, and $636,688 for medical expenses.

“We’re very pleased for the family,” said Scott Frost, WK partner and lead counsel for the case. “Leroy is facing a terminal diagnosis, and his family is facing an uncertain future. The jury brought a measure of justice to theConways today.”

About Waters & Kraus, LLP

Waters & Kraus, LLP,is a plaintiffs’ firm concentrating on complex product liability and personal injury/wrongful death cases. The firm’s diverse practice includes toxic tort (asbestos andmesothelioma) litigation, pharmaceutical product liability, negligence, consumer class actions, elder financial abuse, and consumer product liability, as well as qui tam (whistleblower), and commercial litigation. With offices in Maryland, Texas, and California, Waters & Kraus has litigated cases in jurisdictions across the United States on behalf of individuals from all 50 states, as well as foreign governments.

Press Contact:
Brandy Dietz
315North Charles Street
Baltimore,MD21201

bdietz@waterskraus.com
800-226-9880
http://www.waterskraus.com

http://www.pressreleasepoint.com/9936m-awarded-son-merchant-mariner-household-exposure-asbestos

 
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Pleural Mesothelioma– Asbestos Trades – Asbestos Mesothelioma Lawsuit

29 new asbestos cases filed inMadisonCountyMarch 8-12
3/31/2010 2:34 PM By Kelly Holleran

A total of 29 newasbestos lawsuits were filed in Madison County Circuit Court during the week of March 8 through March 12.

The following complaints were filed:

--Florence Adkins of Michigan claims her recently deceased husband, Barry Adkins, developed mesothelioma after his work as a press operator, airman, construction worker,lineman and metals finisher at various locations from 1951 until 1986. Florence Adkins will be represented by Randy S. Cohn and Sean M. Keane of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-257.

--Margaret Battle ofPennsylvania, a custodian and maintenance laborer at various locations from 1970 until 1979, claims lung cancer.Battle will be represented by Robert Phillips and Perry J. Browder of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-272.

--James C. and Doris A. Billingsley of Tennessee claim James C. Billingsley developed mesothelioma after his work in the U.S. Navy from 1954 until 1957, as a sheet metal part stamper at Gray and Dudley Foundry in 1953, as a route salesman at Pepsi Cola Bottling Company from 1953 until 1954 and from 1957 until 1958, as an electrical engineer for Avco Electronics in 1963 and as an electrical engineer for ARO from 1963 until 1994. The Billingsleys will be represented by Elizabeth V. Heller and Robert Rowland of Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli and Rowland in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-248.

--Brenda Casey ofKentucky claims her recently deceased mother, Mary Elizabeth Christine Drury, developed lung cancer after her work as a drywall contractor from 1964 until 1979. Casey will be represented by Robert Phillips and Perry J. Browder of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-273.

--Eric S. Colley of Illinois, a welder at Robert Brent Company in 1983, a line maintenance mechanic at Sola Optical in 1983, an apprentice machinist at Normande Machine from 1987 until 1988 and a warehouse manager and production supervisor at R.S. Deal Corp. from 1983 until 1986 and from 1989 until 1993, claims mesothelioma. Colley will be represented by Michael R. Bilbrey and James R. Stever of the Law Offices of Michael R. Bilbrey in Glen Carbon. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-274.

--Leroy Conley ofMissouri, an electrician from 1943 until 1979, claims mesothelioma. Conley will be represented by Andrew O'Brien, Christopher Thoron, Christina J. Nielson, Bartholomew J. Baumstark and Gerald J. FitzGerald of O'Brien Law Firm inSt. Louis. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-267.

--Warren E. Davis ofFlorida, a laborer and mechanic from 1960 until 1979, claims mesothelioma.Davis will be represented by Robert Phillips and Perry J. Browder of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-270.

--Aletha Everett ofLouisiana claims she developed mesothelioma after she was secondarily exposed to asbestos fibers through her husband who worked as a commercial and residential construction worker and an upholstery worker from 1935 until 1981. She was also exposed to asbestos through her sons who worked as construction workers in the 1960s, according to the complaint.Everett will be represented by W. Brent Copple and Myles L. Epperson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-260.

--Thomas Gorman ofWisconsin, a union laborer at various locations from 1966 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Gorman will be represented by Robert Phillips and Perry J. Browder of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-266.

--Julius K. Hayes Jr. ofGeorgia claims his recently deceased wife, Gladys E. Hayes, developed mesothelioma after working as an operator and office assistant forSouthern Bell from 1963 until 1967, in reservations for Eastern Airlines from 1967 until 1991 and as a lead analyst for SITA from 1992 until 2009. Gladys Hayes was also secondarily exposed to asbestos fibers through her husband, Julius K. Hayes Jr., who worked as an electrician at various site locations from 1973 until 2009. Julius K. Hayes Jr. will be represented by Elizabeth V. Heller and Robert Rowland of Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli and Rowland in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-251.

--Willie Mae Imes ofMaryland, an assembly line worker, machine operator and material handler at various locations from 1960 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Imes will be represented by Robert Phillips and Perry J. Browder of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-271.

--Kathleen Lux ofPennsylvania claims her recently deceased father, Thomas William Kennedy, developed mesothelioma after his work as a foreman, supervisor and buyer at various locations from 1957 until 1967. Lux will be represented by Robert Phillips and Perry J. Browder of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-278.

--Claudine McCulough ofIllinois claims her recently deceased husband, Marshall Joseph McCulough, developed lung cancer after his work as a caster at various locations from 1958 until 1979. McCulough will be represented by Robert Phillips and Perry J. Browder of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-275.

--Leander Michlig of Florida, a tower operator, customer service worker, laborer and gas handler at various locations throughoutIllinois from 1944 until 1989, claimspleural mesothelioma. Michlig will be represented by G. Michael Stewart and Jill Price of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-246.

--Charlotte Miller ofIndiana claims her recently deceased husband, Wayne Miller, developed malignant mesothelioma after his work as a machinist for General Motors at Central Foundry from 1954 until 1980 and as a construction laborer and roofer for Best for Less Construction from 1980 until 1990. Charlotte Miller will be represented by Elizabeth V. Heller and Robert Rowland of Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli and Rowland in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-249.

--Leon and Forence Riccardi ofMissouri claim Leon Riccardi developed mesothelioma after his work as a pipefitter, laborer, machine operator and roll operator at various locations throughIllinois andMissouri from 1962 until 2009. Leon Riccardi was also secondarily exposed to asbestos fibers through his step-father, who worked as a laborer for Union Pacific Railroad from 1953 until 1954, according to the complaint. The Riccardis will be represented by Stephanie A. Lyons of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-258.

--Ardyce Riggs ofArkansas, a customer service worker at Pacific Finance from 1962 until 1965, a housewife from 1965 until 1970 and a worker at Levi Strauss Company from 1970 until 1979, claims pleural mesothelioma. Riggs claims she was also secondarily exposed to asbestos fibers through her husband, David Riggs, who worked as a self-employed hairdresser and as a truck driver, according to the complaint. Ardyce Riggs will be represented by James F. Kelly and Jeffrey A.J. Millar of Brent Coon and Associates inSt. Louis. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-241.

--Michael G. Shaud of Alabama, a pharmacist in the U.S. Air Force from 1954 until 1964, a shuttle car operator at the Concord Coal Mine from 1965 until 1977, a shuttle car operator at Southern Electric Generating Company from 1967 until 1972, a laborer and cement panel maker in 1970, a general laborer at the Abex Corporation from 1970 until 1972, a forklift operator at Jim Walters Resources from 1972 until 1993, a residential construction worker from 1964 until 1980 and braid and gasket manufacturer from 1971 until 1991, claims mesothelioma. Shaud will be represented by Randy L. Gori of Gori, Julian and Associates in Edwardsville. W. Mark Lanier, Patrick N. Haines, R. Craig Bullock and J. Kyle Beale of The Lanier Law Firm inHouston will be representing him. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-243.

--Larry Lee Shult ofMontana, a fire protection pipe fitting apprentice at Grinnell Fire Protection Systems between 1959 and 1964, claims pleural mesothelioma. Shult will be represented by James F. Kelly and Jeffrey A.J. Millar of Brent Coon and Associates. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-242.

--Ruth Simms ofFlorida claims her recently deceasedhusband, James Simms developed lung cancer after his work in the U.S. Army from 1943 until 1946 and as a heavy equipment mechanic and construction engineer from 1946 until 1997. Ruth Simms will be represented by Randy L. Gori and Barry Julian of Gori, Julian and Associates in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-263.

--Bonnie Smith ofAlabama claims her recently deceased husband, Hubert Smith, developed lung cancer after his work as a fork lift operator at U.S. Steel and as a laborer and deliverer at Sign Builders. Bonnie Smith will be represented by Randy L. Gori and Barry Julian of Gori, Julian and Associates in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-261.

--Lurita and James Smith of Florida claim Lurita Smith developed lung cancer after she was secondarily exposed to asbestos fibers through her husband, who served in the U.S. Army Reserve from 1964 until 1970 and who worked as a helper and yard manager at General Ship Repair Corp. from the 1960s until 2005. The Smiths will be represented by Randy L. Gori and Barry Julian of Gori, Julian and Associates in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-262.

--Phyllis Stevens ofKentucky, a furnace and crane operator at various locations from 1973 until 1974, claims lung cancer. Stevens will be represented by Robert Phillips and Perry J. Browder of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-259.

--Judy Stroder ofIllinois claims her recently deceased husband, Roger L. Stroder, developed lung cancer after his work in the U.S. Army as a supply clerk from 1970 until 1972 and as an electrician at Granite City Steel from 1970 until 2008. Judy Stroder will be represented by Randy L. Gori and Barry Julian of Gori, Julian and Associates in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-254.

--Gary Sweitzer claims his recently deceased wife, Helen Sweitzer, developed lung cancer after her work as a laborer at various locations from 1977 until 2007. Helen Sweitzer was also exposed to asbestos fibers through her family member, Gordon Geyer, who worked as a machine operator from 1954 until 1979, according to the complaint. The Sweitzers will be represented by Robert Phillips and Perry J. Browder of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-265.

--Dolores Waltemate ofIllinois claims her recently deceased husband, Rudolph E. Watlemate, developed mesothelioma after his work as a railroad fireman and machinist at various locations from 1947 until 1979. Dolores Waltemate will be represented by Andrew O'Brien, Christopher Thoron, Christina J. Nielson, Bartholomew J. Baumstark and Gerald J. FitzGerald of the O'Brien Law Firm inSt. Louis. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-276.

--Merry Ann Westbrooks ofArizona claims her recently deceased mother, Rosalyn Westbrooks, developed mesothelioma after her work as a secretary at various locations throughoutIllinois andOhio from 1950 until 1970. Rosalyn Westbrooks was also secondarily exposed to asbestos fibers through her husband who worked from the 1950s until the 1980s as a carpenter, according to the complaint. Merry Ann Westbrooks will be represented by Timothy F. Thompson Jr. of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd of East Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-277.

--Billy Jean Worley Iowa claims her recently deceased husband, Clarence L. Worley, developed mesothelioma after his work as a farm hand from 1948 until 1969, as a carpenter for DA Demerit from 1969 until 1972 and as a millwright for A-Alert from 1972 until 2009. Billy Jean Worley will be represented by Elizabeth V. Heller and Robert Rowland of Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli and Rowland in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-250.

--Michael Wurn ofFlorida claims his recently deceased wife, Luane Wurn, developed mesothelioma after her work as a teacher, medical records clerk and suspension coordinator at various locations from 1962 until 2005. Michael Wurn will be represented by Christopher R. Guinn of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-239.

http://www.madisonrecord.com/news/225720-29-new-asbestos-cases-filed-in-madison-county-march-8-12

 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Asbestos Trades – Mesothelioma Asbestos Lawsuits

27 new asbestos cases filed Nov. 2-6 inMadisonCounty
11/20/2009 7:39 AM By Kelly Holleran 

A total of 27 newasbestos lawsuits were filed in Madison County Circuit Court throughout the week of Nov. 2 through Nov. 6.

The following suits were filed:

--Bob D.Berlin ofMinnesota, a plumber, sheet metal worker, electrician and laborer at various locations from 1966 until 1979, claims lung cancer.Berlin will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1188.

--David and Kathleen Black ofNew York claim David Black developed mesothelioma after working as a painter and drywaller from 1971 until 1978, as a mechanic and infantryman at St. Leonard Wood from 1975 until 1997, as an accident investigator for the U.S. Army from 2000 until now and as a shadetree mechanic from 1958 until 1980. The Blacks will be represented by Randy L. Gori of Gori, Julian and Associates inAlton. W. Mark Lanier, Patrick N. Haines, W. Casey Harris and M. Clay Fostel of The Lanier Law Firm inHouston will serve of counsel. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1165.

--Elroy Christiansen ofWisconsin, an electrician at various locations from 1966 until 1999, claims lung cancer. Christiansen will be represented by Randy S. Cohn of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1167.

--Richard Clemons of Virginia, a painter at various locations from 1971 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Clemons will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1172.

--Janet Elrod claims the recently deceased Betty R. Walker developed mesothelioma after being exposed to asbestos fibers through her family member, William Walker, who worked as an electrician from 1960 until 1972 at various locations. Elrod will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1195.

--Mark and Margaret Garbry ofNew York claim Mark Garbry developed mesothelioma after his work as a drop hammer operator at Oneida Limited Silverware Company from 1966 until 2009, as a part-time EMT worker from 1989 until 2002 and as a shadetree mechanic in the 1970s. The Garbrys will be represented by Randy L. Gori of Gori, Julian and Associates in Edwardsville. W. Mark Lanier, Patrick N. Haines, R. Craig Bullock and J. Kyle Beale of the Lanier Law Firm inHouston will serve of counsel. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1178.

--Henry C. Gayden ofKentucky, a laborer and welder at various locations from 1967 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Gayden will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1192.

--Robert N. Gitzen ofPennsylvania, a laborer and steelworker at various locations from 1964 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Gitzen will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1193.

--Darwin B. Hoover ofLouisiana, a welder and laborer at various locations from 1961 until 1979, claims lung cancer.Hoover will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Anglides and Barnerd of East Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1191.

--Betty Huff ofMissouri claims her recently deceased husband, J.L. Huff, developed mesothelioma after his work as a maintenance worker, millwright and foreman at Masonite from 1948 until 1985 and as an insulator at Ingalls Shipbuilding in the 1960s. Betty Huff will be represented by Randy L. Gori and Barry Julian of Gori, Julian and Associates in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1175.

--Robert M. and Margatette Law of Virginia claim Robert Law developed mesothelioma after his work with Alcoa from 1944 until 1945 and as a member of the U.S. Air Force from 1950 until 1971. Robert M. Law was also exposed to asbestos fibers through his father, who worked at the same facility for 20 years while Robert M. Law was living with him. The Laws will be represented by Elizabeth V. Heller and Robert Rowland of Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli and Rowland in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1183.

--Jeana Manolescu ofNew York claims she developed mesothelioma after being exposed to asbestos fibers through her family member, Vincent Egresits, who worked as a laborer, electrician and home remodeler at various locations from 1970 until 1979. Manolescu will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1173.

--Arval R. Mason ofArkansas, a laborer at various locations from 1967 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Mason will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1187.

--Joseph Maurelli Jr. ofColorado, a facilities engineer, an engineer, a project manager and a reactor operator at various locations throughoutIllinois,Minnesota,California,Colorado andIdaho from 1960 until 2009, claimspleural mesothelioma. Maurelli will be represented by G. Michael Stewart and Jill Price of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1184.

--Anthony J. McDonald ofNevada, a marine, tree cutter, truck driver and meat cutter at various locations from 1963 until 1979, claims mesothelioma. McDonald will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1174.

--James Moroney ofWisconsin, a delivery man, mechanic, laborer, millwright and electrician at various locations from 1960 until 2007, claimspleural mesothelioma. Moroney will be represented by G. Michael Stewart and Jill Price of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1186.

--Ferris Murphy ofNevada claims her recently deceased husband, Laurence S. Murphy, developed lung cancer after his work as a plumber and home remodeler at various locations from 1955 until 1979. Ferris Murphy will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1197.

--Aileen Noll of Wisconsin claims her recently deceased father, William Noll, developed mesothelioma after his work as a mechanic in the U.S. Army from 1969 until 1972, as a laborer at various sites from 1976 until 1977, as a mechanic from 1977 until 1979, as a drywaller and general residential construction worker 1966 until 1978 and as a shadetree mechanic from 1969 until 1991. Aileen Noll will be represented by Randy L. Gori of Gori, Julian and Associates in Edwardsville. W. Mark Lanier, Patrick N. Haines, W. Casey Harris and M. Clay Fostel of The Lanier Law Firm inHouston will serve of counsel. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1166.

--Keith Pace ofNevada claims his recently deceased father, Alfred Pace, developed mesothelioma after his work as a laborer and shipwright at various locations from 1954 until 1979. Pace will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1171.

--Melvin and Darlene Peterson of Utah claim Melvin Peterson developed mesothelioma after his work as a car salesman at Bosse Motors from 1959 until 1962, as a bricklayer at Powell College from 1960 until 1961, as a laborer at Standard Refinery from 1961 until 1962, as a car salesman at Capital Chevrolet Company from 1962 until 1964, as a partner in Peterson Brothers Construction Company from 1964 until 1967, as a partner in Peterson Trailer and Auto Sales from 1966 until 1967, as the owner and manager of Peterson Auto Sales beginning in 1967 and as a safety inspector and car repairman at Pete's Texaco beginning in 1972. The Petersons will be represented by Randy L. Gori and Barry Julian of Gori, Julian and Associates in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1164.

--Dale Rhine ofIllinois, a laborer, concrete finisher, pipefitter helper and engineer at various locations from 1950 until 1979, claims asbestosis. Rhine will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1194.

--Antonio Rivas of Washington, a laborer and welder at various locations from 1968 until 1979, claims colon cancer. Rivas will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1189.

--Gala Seay ofNorth Carolina, a laborer, coal miner and home remodeler at various locations from 1973 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Seay will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1196.

--Penn Smith of Utah, an electrician at various locations from 1965 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Smith will be represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1190.

--Laura Thompson ofNevada, a dental assistant, office manager, bookkeeper and office assistant at various locations throughoutIllinois,California,Arkansas,Montana andUtah, claims mesothelioma. Thompson was also exposed to asbestos fibers through her father, who worked as a construction laborer and construction supervisor from 1936 until 1961. Thompson will be represented by Amy E. Garrett and W. Brent Copple of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1179.

--Frances Trillet ofLouisiana, a dental assistant from 1957 until 1963, claims mesothelioma. Trillet will be represented by Richard L. Saville Jr. and Ethan A. Flint of Saville andFlint inAlton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1182.

--Angela Van Vranken ofTennessee claims her recently deceased mother, Pauline Mahoney, developed mesothelioma after her work as an assembly line worker, waitress and homemaker at various locations throughoutIllinois,Kentucky,Ohio andTennessee from 1943 until 2009. Mahoney was also exposed to asbestos fibers through her husband, William Mahoney Jr., who worked as a motor car repairman, pump repairman, electrician, pipefitter, bridge repairman, bridge inspector and superintendent from 1933 until 1977, and through her son, Barry Mahoney, who worked as a laborer from 1983 until 1988. Van Vranken will be represented by Amy E. Garrett and Sean M. Keane of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1168.

http://www.madisonrecord.com/news/223205-27-new-asbestos-cases-filed-nov.-2-6-in-madison-county


 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Asbestos Trades – Asbestos Complaints

14 new asbestos complaints filed inMadisonCountyNov. 9-14
11/23/2009 2:30 PM By Kelly Holleran

A total of 14 newasbestos lawsuits were filed in Madison County Circuit Court throughout the week of Nov. 9 through Nov. 13.

The following complaints were filed:

--Donald W. Armstrong ofNorth Carolina claims his recently deceased father, Earl A. Armstrong, developed mesothelioma after his work as an electrician at various locations from 1944 until 1994. Donald W. Armstrong will be represented by Myles L. Epperson of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1222.

--Frank Brown ofTexas, printer at various locations throughoutIllinois,Texas,Florida andColorado from 1954 until 2004, claimspleural mesothelioma. Brown will be represented by G. Michael Stewart and Jill Price of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1221.

--Leo Hampton Collins Jr. and Hazel Louann Collins ofSouth Carolina claim Leo Hampton Collins Jr. developed lung cancer after his work as a pipefitter and shipfitter from 1945 until 1951 and as a laborer and maintenance man from 1950 until 1990. The Collins will be represented by Elizabeth V. Heller and Robert Rowland of Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli and Rowland in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1210.

--Paul Dwayne and Mina Dickerson ofIllinois claim Paul Dwayne Dickerson developed lung cancer after his work as a mechanic, carpenter and glazier at various locations from 1971 until now. The Dickersons will be represented by Amy E. Garrett and Sean M. Keane of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1203.

--Toni Gibson-Williams and Elmore Williams Jr. ofOhio claim Toni Gibson-Williams developed mesothelioma after her work as a security guard, assembly line worker, waitress and nurse assistant at various locations from 1978 until now. The Williams will be represented by Shane F. Hampton and Paul M. Dix of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1212.

--Bonnie Glass ofAlabama claims her recently deceased husband, William G. Glass, developed mesothelioma after his work as a painter at various locations inAlabama and as an auto mechanic from 1975 until 1982. Bonnie Glass will be represented by Randy L. Gori and Barry Julian of Gori, Julian and Associates in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1223.

--Reford McGuire of Ohio, a transmission assembler and brake packer at General Motors from 1962 until 1991, claims mesothelioma. McGuire will be represented by Jackalyn A. Olinger, T. Barton French and Nate Mudd of French and Mudd inSt. Louis. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1217.

--Victor Nottoli ofOklahoma, a clerk, mail carrier and assembler at various locations throughoutIllinois,California,Texas andFlorida, claims mesothelioma. Nottoli will be represented G. Michael Stewart and Jill Price of Simmons, Browder and Gianaris inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1219.

--Emma J. Oldham ofMissouri claims mesothelioma.Oldham was exposed to asbestos fibers through her husband, who worked as a boilermaker and pipefitter from 1952 until 1981. Oldham will be represented by Andrew O'Brien, Christopher Thoron, Christina J. Nielson, Bartholomew J. Baumstark and Gerald J. FitzGerald of O'Brien Law Firm inSt. Louis. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1214.

--Leon Roberson ofWisconsin, an assembly line worker, crane operator, truck driver, contractor and bar owner at various locations throughoutIllinois,Wisconsin,Tennessee,Arkansas andKentucky from 1961 until 2009, claims pleural mesothelioma. Roberson will be represented by G. Michael Stewart and Jill Price of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1208.

--Tonnie Louise Teague ofAlabama claims her recently deceased husband, Wallace Teague, developed lung cancer after his work as a laborer for the railroad from 1948 until 1950, as a lineman at Miller Weaver Cable Company from 1950 until 1952 and as a laborer at Ben Hey and Company from 1952 until 1972. Tonnie Louise Teague will be represented by Elizabeth V. Heller and Robert Rowland of Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli and Rowland in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1211.

--Udeyne Weber ofIllinois claims her recently deceased husband, Louis Weber, developed lung cancer after his work as a pipefitter, laborer and painter inIllinois from 1941 until 1983. Udeyne Weber will be represented by Shane F. Hampton and Paul M. Dix of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1205.

--Joseph Whitehead of Indiana, a laborer and janitor at various locations from 1951 until 1986, claims mesothelioma. Whitehead will be represented by Randy S. Cohn of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1213.

--Dwight Wood Jr. of Indiana, a stock boy, meat apprentice, power inspector, electrician, power station laborer and turbine operator at various locations throughoutKentucky,Louisiana,Georgia andColorado from 1969 until 2009, claims lung cancer. Wood will be represented by G. Michael Stewart and Jill Price of Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1220.

http://www.madisonrecord.com/news/223233-14-new-asbestos-complaints-filed-in-madison-county-nov.-9-14

 
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Pleural Cancer – Asbestos Exposure – Asbestos Health Disorders

 


Asbestos

Natural asbestos is found in two varieties: serpentine asbestos and amphibole asbestos. Approximately 90% of serpentine is the variety chrysotile, while amphibole asbestos includes crocidolite, amosite, anthophyllite asbestos, actinole asbestos, and tremolite asbestos.

Asbestos has been observed to cause four health disorders. Asbestosis results in stiffening of the lung, and has resulted in the deaths of many miners. Lung cancer has a higher incidence in miners who also smoke, with the chance of developing cancer roughly proportional to the amount smoked. Asbestos-induced cancer is found only rarely in nonsmokers. Among the various type of asbestos, chrysotile workers have the lowest incidence of cancer. Mesothelioma involves the development of a fatal tumor. The time between diagnosis and original exposure is commonly 30 years or more. Family members of miners are also at risk. Among the general population, 70-80% of all mesothelioma cases are caused by exposure to asbestos. A staggering 18% of all mortalities in crocidolite workers are theresult of mesotheliomaBenign pleural changes also occur to an extent proportional to exposure, but rarely cause functional impairment.

Judging from this data, there appears to be a difference in the detrimental effects of asbestos depending on the variety. In fact, "chrysotile-exposed workers have shown an appreciable lung burden of amphibole fibers.In contrast, chrysotile has been found post-mortem in smaller amounts than expected in the lungs of asbestos workers" (Mossman 1990, p. 296).

"Data suggest that amphiboles are the major cause of mesotheliomas in asbestos workers." On the basis of medical studies, "amphiboles are more potent than chrysotile in the induction of fibrotic lung disease and associated lung cancer." The reason for the difference in virulence is that "rod-like amphiboles appear to penetrate the peripheral lung more readily than chrysotile fibers, which are curly" (Mossman 1990, pp. 294-295). Furthermore, according to theStanton hypothesis, "fibers longer than 8 m and less than 0.25 m in diameter have the most marked carcinogenic potential." This is presumably a result of the differing shapes, which means that "chrysotile fibers, in comparison to amphibole fibers, are cleared more readily from human lungs."

"The available experimental and epidemiological data indicate that both fiber types are important determinants of the pathogenicity of asbestos." "Recent epidemiological data are concordant with the suggestion that exposure to chrysotile at current occupational standards does not increase the risk of asbestos-associated diseases." However, "federal policy in theUnited States does not differentiate between different types of asbestos." This makes little sense, since, "with few exceptions, the type of asbestos fiber found predominantly in buildings is chrysotile."(Mossman, p. 247). Furthermore, removal will cost $53 billion, but estimates range up to $100-150 billion (Mossman 1990, p. 94).

"Recent epidemiological studies of deaths from mesothelioma in the general population also suggest that risk from asbestos in buildings is minuscule." "Risks of asbestos-related total deaths (both lung cancers and mesothelioma) due to exposure in schools are magnitudes lower than commonplace risks in modern day society," for example, 0.005-0.096 deaths/million compared to 6 deaths/million for airplane accidents. "The available data and comparative risk assessments indicate that chrysotile asbestos, the type of fiber found predominantly inU. S. schools and buildings, is not a health risk in the nonoccupational environment.Clearly, the asbestos panic in theU. S. must be curtailed" (Mossman 1990, p. 299).

"About 95% of the commercial asbestos now used in theUnited States is chrysotile." Chrysotile asbestos used in theU. S. is mined mainly from vast deposits inQuebec. Amosite in mined only in South Africa, crocidolite only in South Africa, western Australia, and Bolivia, and anthophyllite only in Finland.Russia is the world's largest chrysotile producer, followed byCanada andSouth Africa (Ross 1981, p. 281).

Ross comes to similar conclusions about the health risks associated with cancer. "Pleural cancer seems to be caused by crocidolite asbestos but not by chrysotile or anthophyllite asbestos. Lung cancer is caused by chrysotile, anthophyllite, amosite, and crocidolite asbestos in asbestos workers who smoke cigarettes. Evidence for excess lung cancer in nonsmoking asbestos workers is weak.Two completely different substances, asbestos and cigarette smoke, combine to produce a very significant risk to many asbestos workers, particularly those who are heavily exposed to asbestos dusts."

"Generally, asbestos related diseases appear in asbestos workers only after many years have elapsed since first exposure. A significant increase in the lung cancer death rate appears 10 to 14 years after first exposure and peaks at 30 to 35 years. The mesothelioma death rate becomes significant 20 years after the first exposure, but continues to climb even after 45 years have elapsed.The asbestosis death rate becomes significant 15 to 20 years after first exposure and apparently peaks at 40 to 45 years" (Ross 1981, p. 303).

"Increased risk of lung cancer due to asbestos exposure in non-smokers is very low. There appears to be no relationship between smoking habits and the incidence of mesothelioma" (Ross 1981, p. 306). "Analysis shows a positive correlation between lung cancer and mesothelioma mortality.Individuals who did not come into contact with crocidolite have very low mesothelioma mortality" (Ross 1981, p. 311). "There is no question that those exposed to heavy concentrations of chrysotile and anthophyllite dust over long periods of time have suffered a significant excess mortality due to lung cancer and asbestosis--but not to mesothelioma. For men exposed for over 20 years [to] low and medium dust [concentrations], there was a slight excess of risk for lung cancer" (Ross 1981, p. 313).

"Crocidolite asbestos is much more hazardous than chrysotile, anthophyllite, and amosite.Mesothelioma deaths have been reported among the residents of these areas who are not employed in the mines or mills" (Ross 1981, p. 314). However, "mesothelioma is very rare where amosite is mined" (Ross 1981, p. 315).

"Of the six forms of asbestos, only four have been used to any significant degree in commerce.These are amosite, crocidolite, anthophyllite, and chrysotile" (Ross 1981, p. 316). "Lung cancer can be caused by exposure to chrysotile, anthophyllite, amosite, and crocidolite asbestos; however, increased risk of this disease is probably found only in those who smoke cigarettes. Asbestosis is also caused by heavy and prolonged exposure to all four forms of asbestos. Mesothelioma is caused principally by exposure to crocidolite asbestos. There is good evidence that anthophyllite and chrysotile asbestos do not cause any significant increase in mesothelioma mortality, even after heavy exposure for many years" (Ross 1981, p. 317).

In conclusion, "chrysotile miners working a lifetime under present dust levels should not be expected to suffer any measurable excess cancer" (Ross 1981, p. 318).

References

Mossman, B. T. et al. . "Asbestos: Scientific Development and Implications for Public Policy." Science 247, 294-301, 1990.

Ross, M. "The Geologic Occurrences and Health Hazards of Amphibole and Serpentine Asbestos." In Reviews in Mineralogy, Volume 9A: Amphiboles and Other Hydrous Pyriboles--Mineralogy (Ed. D. R. Veblen).Washington,DC: Mineralogical Society ofAmerica, pp. 279-323, 1981.

© 1996-2007 Eric W. Weisstein

 

 

http://scienceworld.wolfram.com/chemistry/Asbestos.html

 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Asbestos Exposure – Mesothelioma Asbestos Cases Filed

19 new asbestos cases filed inMadisonCountyJune 1-5
6/22/2009 2:44 PM By Kelly Holleran

A total of 19 newasbestos lawsuits were filed in Madison County Circuit Court during the week of June 1 through June 5.

The following complaints were filed:

--Nicholas S. Argenti Sr. and June Loretta Argenti ofNew York claim Nicholas S. Argenti Sr. developed asbestosis after his work in the U.S. Navy from 1955 until 1959. Argenti also worked from 1959 until 1960 as a laborer for N.Y.S. Electric and Gas; from 1960 until 1969 as a shift foreman for Sierra Pacific Power Co.; from 1969 until 1972 as a maintenance mechanic; from 1972 until 1979 and from 1983 until 1986 in the HVAC and refrigeration business; from 1979 until 1983 as an electrician; and as a pipefitter from 1986 until 2001. Elizabeth V Heller and Robert Rowland of Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli and Rowland in Edwardsville will be representing the Argentis. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-564.

--Dennis Bernard ofMaryland, a bricklayer and pipefitter at various locations from 1973 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Bernard is represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-573.

--Anthony Branconi ofPennsylvania, an electrician from 1965 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Branconi is represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-570.

--Kenneth Heasley Sr. ofSouth Dakota, a boiler and furnace repairman and installer, furnace insulator, construction foreman, mechanic and maintenance worker at various locations from 1959 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Heasley is represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-571.

--James A. Hendren of Virginia, a sanitation worker for the town ofSouth Boston,Va., from 1972 until 2008, claims mesothelioma. Hendren is represented by Elizabeth V. Heller and Robert Rowland of Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli and Rowland in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-557.

--Isiah Hill Jr. of New Jersey, an electrician at various locations from 1953 until 1978, claims lung cancer. Hill is represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalinid M. Robertson of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-572.

--Dennis Hubner ofIllinois, a machinist, shift coordinator and fork lift operator from 1999 until now, claims mesothelioma. Hubner also helped on the family farm until 1988, according to the complaint. Timothy F. Thompson Jr. of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton will be representing him. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-561.

--Mark S. Junghans ofWisconsin, a drywaller, laborer, engine mechanic, mechanic, medic, residential construction and remodeling worker and shade-tree mechanic from 1972 until 2009, claims mesothelioma. Junghans is represented by Randy L. Gori of Gori, Julian and Associates inAlton. W. Mark Lanier, Patrick N. Haines and W. Casey Harris of The Lanier Law Firm inHouston will serve of counsel. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-559.

--Earl Leeder ofCalifornia, a custodian, engineer and plant director at various locations from 1969 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Leeder is represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Roberstson of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-568.

--Steven Meyer of Okawville claims his recently deceased wife, Olivia Meyer,developed pleural mesothelioma after her work as a bundle girl and custodian at various locations throughIllinois from 1952 until 1959 and from 1984 until 2001. She was also secondarily exposed to asbestos fibers through her son, who worked as a mechanic from 1982 until 1989, Steven Meyer claims. G. Michael Stewart and Jill Price of SimmonsCoooper inEast Alton will be representing her. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-550.

--Joyce Mullenix ofGeorgia claims her recently deceased husband, Walt T. Mullenix, developed lung cancer after his work as an insulator from 1948 until 1984. Joyce Mullenix says her husband also worked at many industrial and commercial job sites, including paper mills, hospitals, colleges, power plants, refineries, hotels, airports, schools, textile mills and chemical plants. Elizabeth V. Heller and Robert Rowland of Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli and Rowland in Edwardsville will be representing her. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-560.

--James Nangle ofFlorida, a truck driver at various locations from 1958 until 2004, claims mesothelioma. Nangle is represented by Brian J. Cooke and Drew Sealey of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-574.

--Bonnie Nichols ofKansas claims her recently deceased husband, Neal Nichols, developed mesothelioma after his work from 1970 until 2004 as a carpenter, laborer and truck driver at various locations. Bonnie Nichols is represented by Brian J. Coooke of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-556.

--Brian Noe Jr. of Minnesota claims his recently deceased father, Brian Noe Sr., developed mesothelioma after his work as a laborer at Admiral TV in 1960; as a laborer in the U.S. Navy and at Al Phister Plumbing and Heating from 1965 until 1966; as a laborer at Butcher Boy Doors from 1967 until 1968; as a foreman at Roy Hunt Construction from 1969 until 1984; as a foreman at Bosin Construction from 1986 until 1988 and as a laborer at Smith Steel Inc. from 1997 until 1998. Brian Noe Jr. is represented by Randy L. Gori and Barry Julian of Gori, Julian and Associates in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-576.

--Charles Scott of Georgia, an aircraft worker, equipment cleaner, aircraft parts assembler, ship mechanic and insulator at various locations from 1973 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton will be representing him. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-569.

--David Sommerman ofGeorgia claims Edward Sommerman died after developing mesothelioma after working as a fire proofer. David Sommerman is represented by Richard L. Saville Jr. and Ethan A. Flint ofAlton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-558.

--James Spangler ofKentucky, a construction worker at various locations from 1963 until 1969, claims lung cancer. Spangler says he was secondarily exposed to asbestos fibers through his family member, John Spangler, who worked from 1940 until 1962 as an electrician at various locations. Robert Phillips, Perry J. Brower and Rosalind M. Robertson of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton will be representing him. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-567.

--Leslie Vernon Sr. and Mary Ivy Lea Vernon of Texas allege Leslie Vernon Sr. developed mesothelioma after his work in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1943 until 1945 and as an electrician in numerous cities from 1946 until 1986. The Vernons are represented by Elizabeth V. Heller and Robert Rowland of Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli and Rowland in Edwardsville. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-577.

--Louise Wilkerson ofNorth Carolina, a spinner and laborer at various locations from 1947 until 1979, claims lung cancer. Wilkerson is represented by Robert Phillips, Perry J. Browder and Rosalind M. Robertson of SimmonsCooper inEast Alton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-566.

http://www.madisonrecord.com/news/219694-19-new-asbestos-cases-filed-in-madison-county-june-1-5

 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Asbestos Company – Asbestos Mesothelioma Lawsuit

 

February 14, 2009

Man Files Asbestos Lawsuit Suing 58 Companies

A man who wasdiagnosed with an asbestos-related disease and his wife are suing 58 corporations for personal injury. Joseph and Lisa Headley say all of the defendants knew that Joseph was working around products with asbestos but acted negligently when they failed to warn him about whatexposure to asbestos can do to a person’s health. Their complaint also accuses the defendants of failing to provide him with the proper safety gear, clothing, and information.

Joseph says he was unaware that exposure to products that contain asbestos could pose a health hazard to him. As a result of asbestos exposure, he says he sustained injury, disability, illness, pain, mental trauma, permanent partial disability, and physical impairment. He also says he has experienced progressive loss of earning capacity, accrued medical expenses, and can no longer take part in certain activities. His wife Lisa says that because of her husband’s illness, she experienced loss of his services, financial support, care, consortium, and comfort.

Among the defendants are those the couple is accusing of making products that contain asbestos, including: Ametek, Certainteed, Bondex, Copes-Vulcan, Uniroyal, Durabla, Champlain, Henry Vost Machine, Cooper Industries, Kaiser Gypsum, Crosby Valve, Sepco Corp., Crown Cork, Garlock, Georgia Pacific, Foseco, Guard-Line, Insulation Co.,Industrial Holdings Corp., Ogelbay Norton, KCG, Owens-Illinois, Murcowall Products, Rapid American, Parsons E&C, RPM Inc., Union Carbide, and TWC Valve.

Their complaint also names four premise owners, Dupont, Chevron, Texaco, and Exxon Mobile, as well as the following contractors that he claims provided the material that contained asbestos, Bechtel, Able Supply, Daniel International, HP Zachary, and Fluor, as defendants.

The asbestos lawsuit says a number of defendant companies made the machinery that required the products that contained asbestos, including: Zurn, Weil-McLain, Warren Pumps, Viacom, Trane, Oakfabco, FMC Corp., Allis-Chalmers, Ingersoll-Rand, Aqua Chem, Goulds Pumps, GE, Crane Co., Foster Wheeler, Elliot Turbo Machinery, Peerless, and IMO Industries. The complaint also accuses defendant Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. of concealing the dangers of asbestos exposure from members of the public.

The couple is seeking unspecified exemplary and punitive damages, as well as other relief.

Asbestos-Related Illnesses

Asbestos exposure can lead to a number of diseases, including several types of cancer,pleural mesothelioma, and asbestosis. One type of cancer can even take up to 70 years to reveal any symptoms.

A person afflicted by a disease caused by exposure to hazardous or toxic substances on the job may be entitled to workers' compensation benefits as well as third party personal injury compensation.

Almost 60 Charged with Asbestos Exposure, MesotheliomaWeb.org

Suit names 58 defendants over man's asbestos exposure, The Southeast Texas Record, January 21, 2008

http://www.chicagoworkerscompensationlawyerblog.com/third_party_lawsuits/
 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Asbestos Trades –Mesothelioma Lawsuit

Four new asbestos cases filed Jan. 19-23
1/30/2009 6:19 AM By KellyHolleran

A total of four new asbestos lawsuits were filed in Madison County Circuit Court during the week of Jan. 19 through Jan. 23.

The following claims were filed:

--Richard Dean and Vivian Byrd claim Richard Dean Byrd developedpleuralmesothelioma after serving in the United States Navy from 1962 until 1967 and after working as a burner and ship dock worker from 1967 until 1970 and as a painter from 1974 until 1989. TheByrds are represented by Donald M. Flack of the Flack Law Office inWoodRiver and by Waters and Kraus inDallas. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-0043.

--EdwardDiesko ofMissouri, who worked from 1941 until 1942 as a laborer at Amoco, from 1942 until 1946 as a machinist in the U.S. Coast Guard, from 1946 until 1959 as a pipefitter at Amoco and from 1961 until 1979 as a pipefitter and foreman at General Electrics, claims lung cancer. He is represented by Randy L.Gori and Barry Julian ofGori, Julian and Associates inAlton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-0038.

--Phillip Moore of Tennessee claimsmesothelioma on behalf of his recently deceased father, Thurman Moore, who served in the Army from March 1945 until February 1946 and who worked from 1946 until 1989 as a maintenance worker and machine operator at Brown Shoe Company. Phillip Moore is represented by Randy L.Gori and Barry Julian ofGori, Julian and Associates inAlton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-0039.

--LoreleiStumpf of Oregon claims her recently deceased husband, WilliamStumpf, developedmesothelioma while working from 1963 until 1970 as a laborer at Al's and Ed's Garage, from 1970 until 1972 as a laborer at Pierce Hardwood Floors and from 1975 until 1979 as a laborer at Jim Walters Doors. LoreleiStumpf is represented by Randy L.Gori and Barry Julian ofGori, Julian and Associates inAlton. Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-0049.

http://www.madisonrecord.com/news/217148-four-new-asbestos-cases-filed-jan.-19-23

 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Asbestos Diagnosis –$35.1 Million Mesothelioma Verdict

 

Jury Awards $35.1 Million to RetiredU.S. Navy 
Boiler Tender Exposed to Asbestos

Verdict Is One of LA County’s Largest Ever in an Asbestos Case; 

 

LOS ANGELES — October 17, 2007 — A Los Angeles County jury late last week handed down a$35.1 million verdict to a 74-year-old retired U.S. Navy boiler tender, validating that his exposure to asbestos in pump, valve and pipe parts more than five decades ago is the direct cause of thedeadlymesothelioma he suffers with today.

 

The verdict is among one of the largest-ever awards inLos AngelesCounty for a plaintiff in a Navy asbestos exposure case. The verdict includes $100,000 for economic damages; $25 million to the victim for pain and suffering; and $10 million to the victim’s wife for loss of consortium. Leslie Controls and Warren Pumps were each assessed 7.1 percent liability. The judge disallowed consideration of punitive damages.

 

The plaintiff, John R. "Jack" Davis, was diagnosed withpleuralmesothelioma in January 2007. A native ofIdaho,Davis served as a fireman and boiler tender aboard the U.S.S.DeHaven for 4 years during the Korean War. Following his honorable discharge in 1955, he worked for American Pipe and Steel, and Sound Control Company, before being hired by Shell Oil in 1956. He worked at Shell refineries in Dominguez andWilmington,California., until 1963.

 

In 1964,Davis returned toIdaho, where he worked for Philip Petroleum and successive contractors at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) while studying college-level electronics and computers. He retired from INEEL in 1995. Until hismesothelioma diagnosis earlier this year, he and his wife, Janette, enjoyed an active retirement that revolved around family, sports and outdoor activities with his two children, five grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

 

In his testimony, the soft-spoken and affable plaintiff described his work as a boiler tender in the aft engine room of the U.S.S.DeHaven. He explained that he had volunteered for the assignment — considered to be one of the least desirable aboard ship in cramped, hot and dirty quarters.

 

He also asserted that he would have protected himself had he known the danger of being exposed to the asbestos in the myriad small pump and valve components that he handled daily, both as a boiler tender in the Navy, and for a short period after as a pipefitter and instrument man in the private sector.

Davis clearly identified the products he handled as manufactured and branded by Leslie Controls and Warren Pumps.

 

The defense argued that responsibility forDavis’ illness lie with the U.S. Navy and subsequent employers, not the manufacturers. The defense also attempted to argue thatDavis’ radiation exposure while employed at INEEL was a cause or contributing factor to hismesothelioma diagnosis. The judge disallowed the argument due to a lack of medical and scientific evidence.

 

The defense, in its closing argument, challenged the jury to "knock a zero off" whatever award they might consider for the plaintiff. The jury was asked to consider what amount of money would really be necessary to allow theDavises to live comfortably given their age and life expectancy.

 

MikeArmitage, managing partner of WK’sLos Angeles office commented, "The defense’s closing argument was brazen. Here is a good man, a hard-working man, a loving husband, and a model father. He served his country loyally and honorably without question,then spent a lifetime bettering himself to support his family.His reward? It’s essentially a death sentence that was totally avoidable had the manufacturers only made the effort to warn workers to protect themselves."

"No, this case wasn’t about living comfortably," said Gary M. Paul, a WK partner and lead attorney on the case. "It was about justice."

An appeal filed by Leslie Controls and Warren Pumps is currently pending.

 

Full story -- http://www.forbes.com/feeds/ap/2007/10/18/ap4235335.html

 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Asbestos Lawsuit – $35 Million Mesothelioma Award

Former sailor awarded $35M in asbestos suit

A former Navy sailor who was exposed to asbestos more than 50 years ago has beenawarded $35.1 million in compensatory damages after he was diagnosed with cancer. John R. Davis was diagnosed in January withpleuralmesothelioma, an aggressive cancer linked to asbestos, in January 2007.

In his lawsuit,Davis claimed his illness was triggered by exposure to asbestos containing pipes and valves during his Navy and private-sector career.Davis had been a boiler tender with the Navy. The verdict includes $100,000 for economic damages; $25 million for pain and suffering; and $10 million for his wife.

Full story -- http://www.forbes.com/feeds/ap/2007/10/18/ap4235335.html

 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Asbestos Company – $16.925 Million Mesothelioma Verdict

Woodard vs. Alfa Laval, Inc.et.al.

Case Summary

66-year-old Dennis Woodard was diagnosed with malignantpleural Mesotheliomain January 2008. He was exposed to asbestos during a 32-month period aboard theUSS Rogersas a machinist's mate, and later as an electrician's mate aboard theUSS Salisbury Sound. His 8-month tour aboard theUSS Rogersconstituted the most acute exposure, where he daily worked in the ship's boiler and engine rooms helping to repair and maintain a variety of steam lines, pumps, valves,and turbines. Crane Co. argued that the type and amount of asbestos (chrysotile) in their products would not have caused his illness, but pipe insulation manufactured by others likely would have. Defense also contended the U. S. Navy bore full responsibility for protecting its sailors. The jury found Crane Co. liable for its failure to warn.

Verdict

  • February 2, 2009
  • $16.925M total award: $1.925M in economic damages, $12.5M for pain and suffering, $2.5M for loss of consortium
    1. Approx. $2.0M assessed against Crane Co.
  • Crane Co. and 9 others assessed 0.5% liability. Sepco Corporation, 0%.U.S. Navy, 85%. Nonspecified insulation manufacturers, 10%
  • Punitive damages not considered by the jury

Significance

  • Plaintiff's verdict in what was essentially a Navy bystander exposure case
  • Jury clearly held manufacturers responsible for failure to warn
  • Substantial economic damages awarded - thought to be one of the largest to date in LA County in an asbestos-mesothelioma case

Case Information

  • Cause No. BC 387 774
  • Woodard v. Alfa Laval, Inc. et al.
  • Trial length: 3 weeks
  • Deliberation: 2.5 days

Jurisdiction

  • Los Angeles County,Calif., Superior Court,Dept. 56
  • Hon. Jane L. Johnson, presiding

Plaintiff's Experts (*live testimony, **video depostion)

  • *Arnold Brody, M.D., cell biologist
  • *Carl Brodkin, M.D., occupational and environmental medicine
  • **Roy Smythe, M.D., thoracic surgeon and plaintiff's private physician
  • *Arnold Moore, Naval architecture and marine engineering expert (USN, ret.)

Defense Experts(live testimony)

  • Samuel Forman, M.D., occupational medicine
  • Michael Graham, M.D., pathologist
  • Adm. David P. Sargent, Jr. (USN, ret.), Navy expert
  • Frederick Boelter, C.I.H., industrial hygienist

Plaintiff's Counsel

  • Gary Paul (lead), Kevin Loew and Jillian Rice of Waters Kraus & Paul (LA)
  • Daniel Wasserberg of Williams Kherkher Hart Boundas (Houston)

Defense Counsel

  • (Crane Co.) Geoffrey Davis and James Lee of K&L Gates (LA)
  • Sepco Corp.) Jerry Popovich of Selman Breitman (LA)
PDF -http://www.goldbergsegalla.com/publications/asbestos/December-2009.pdf
 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Mesothelioma Medical

New Technique Can Help Diagnose Mesothelioma

ScienceDaily (Aug. 25, 2009) — A new technique may help clinicians hone in on a diagnosis in patients presenting with a pleural effusion of unknown cause.

The study, led by principal investigator Y.C. Gary Lee, Ph.D., appears in the September 1 issue of the American Thoracic Society's AmericanJournal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

"Pleural effusion, or the accumulation of fluid in the pleural cavity, can be maddeningly difficult to diagnose as a wide variety of malignant and benign causes exist," said Helen Davies, M.R.C.P., specialist registrar and research fellow at the Oxford Centre for Respiratory Medicine and Oxford University, lead author of the study. "One of the causes, malignantpleural mesothelioma, is a relatively rare cancer, but its incidence is rapidly increasing on a global scale".

Currently, the first-line test formesothelioma in patients with a pleural effusion is pleural fluid cytology, but this test is not very sensitive. Dr. Davies and her colleagues undertook the study to determine whether there would be additional clinical benefit to looking at pleural fluid mesothelin, a protein released in high quantities into the pleural fluid of most patients with mesothelioma.

They obtained pleural fluid samples from 209 patients referred to a specialized respiratory clinic. Levels of soluble mesothelin were measured in all samples.

Their results demonstrated median pleural fluid mesothelin levels were over six times greater in patients with mesothelioma than in patients with metastatic carcinomas, and ten times greater than in patients with benign effusions.

Using mesothelin levels at a cut-off of 20nM, they found that it had an overall negative predictive value of 95 percent, meaning that a patient with a mesothelin level less than the cut-off of 20nM could be 95 percent confident they did not have malignant mesothelioma. There were 12 false positive results with metastatic adenocarcinomas accounting for over 90 percent of these cases. However, all patients with pleural fluid cytology suspicious for mesothelioma and an elevated mesothelin level had mesothelioma.

"This study suggests a way for clinicians to more readily identify these cases from the start," said Dr. Davies.

Obtaining a promptdiagnosis of mesothelioma has benefits for patients and physicians alike. "Because mesothelioma has a median survival time of 12 months, minimizing the number of invasive procedures and tests patients require is crucial to reduce morbidity and the time they need to spend in hospital," said Dr. Davies. "An earlier diagnosis also allows speedier interventions to relieve symptoms as well as initiation of other treatments such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy if appropriate. Claims for worker's compensation may also be instigated once the diagnosis is confirmed."

Exposure to asbestos is the main risk factor and accounts for the majority of mesothelioma cases. Legislation to prevent occupational exposure to asbestos has been enforced in the developed world; however, unrestricted contact continues in developing countries. Over 90 percent of patients with mesothelioma present with a pleural effusion and its incidence is predicted to peak within the next two decades.

"Pleural fluid mesothelin provides a valuable adjunct in the diagnostic assessment of patients presenting with pleural effusions, especially when cytological examination is not definitive, and can improve clinical practice," said Dr. Davies.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090824081121.htm

 
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Pleural Mesothelioma – Mesothelioma Research

Malignant Mesothelioma and Simian Virus 40 (SV40)

Category: Posted on: April 26, 2010 5:00 PM, by Tara C. Smith

Student guest post by Andrew Behan

Malignant Mesothelioma (MM) is a rare type of cancer which manifests itself in the thin cells lining the human body's internal organs. There are three types of MM;pleural mesothelioma, peritoneal mesothelioma, and pericardial mesothelioma, affecting the lining of the lungs, abdominal cavity, and lining of the heart, respectively (1).Pleural mesothelioma is most common, consisting of about70% of all MM cases and has a poor prognosis; patients live a median time of 18 months after diagnosis. (Note: for the purposes of this article, MM will be used to represent pleural mesothelioma exclusively.) Despite its discovery in the mid-1800's, MM was not linked to asbestos until the late 1900's, when case reports of fast-growing lung cancers, different from previously described lung cancers, motivated investigators to uncover undisputed evidence linking asbestos to MM. Measures to reduce/eliminate asbestos from buildings reduced exposure to the cancer-causing agents found within the material, and public health officials remained confident by the year 2000 MM cases would decline in the U.S. and parts of Europe. Despite these predictions, MM cases have not declined. In fact, the incidence of MM is on the rise (1). Consequently, investigators have focused their attention on other factors to explain the steady incidence of MM in theU.S., eventually naming Simian Virus 40 (SV40) as a potential cause of MM.

You might be asking, "SV40? What's that?" SV40 is a virus originally discovered in 1960 in kidney cells of rhesus monkeys. SV40 is dormant and asymptomatic in rhesus monkeys, but was later found to cause kidney disease, sarcoma, and other cancers in animal models. Later on, it was found SV40 attacks p53 gene (a tumor suppressor) and can interrupt the cell's ability to perform apoptosis, or cell death. This makes the cells immortal, leading to tumor formation, or cancer (2). Controversy arose when the discovery of SV40 was found in the rhesus monkey kidney cells because these same cells were being utilized to form the polio vaccine. Consequently, many polio vaccines were contaminated with SV40 and when the vaccine was used to inoculate humans, SV40 was passed to humans along with the inactive form of the polio virus. It was estimated over 98 million Americans received the vaccine from 1955-1963, when a proportion of the vaccine was contaminated with SV40. Of the 98 million vaccinated during this time period, it was estimated 10-30 million of those individuals were exposed to SV40. Naturally, people who received contaminated forms of the vaccine were afraid they would develop cancer from exposure to SV40.

Since the controversy began in 1960, research has been devoted to confirming its role in cancer development in humans, as well as many animal models. As I mentioned above, presence of SV40 in animals has led to tumors and other cancers, and a few studies have found presence of SV40 in humans who have developed MM. For example, Carbone et al. found SV40 in mesothelial cells of humans who had developed MM, but not in the surrounding tissue (3). They did not find SV40 in patients who had other lung cancers, possibly reinforcing the specificity of their findings (3). Overall, 54% of MM cases were found to have SV40 infection within the mesothelial cells (3). The investigators determined more research needed to be done to see if SV40 infection alone could cause MM, or if other factors, such as immunosuppression or exposure to asbestos, were necessary for development of MM.

Other studies were not as convincing. For example, Lopez-Rios et al. reported that initially they detected SV40 in about 60% of MM specimens, and then they determined that most of the positive results were caused by plasmid PCR contamination, and that only 6% of the initially positive samples were confirmed to contain SV40 DNA (4). However, studies have shown the presence of SV40 in human specimens by using several other techniques besides PCR, including Southern blotting, immunostaining, RNA in situ hybridization, microdissection, and electron microscopy" (5).

Thus, the question remains: does SV40 cause MM, or does SV40 infection, in conjunction with asbestos exposure, generate a greater risk for the development of MM? This is a tough question to answer, because although asbestos is no longer mined in theU.S., it is still being imported; workers are still continually being exposed to asbestos. However, the use of asbestos has nearly ceased, decreasing from 813,000 metric tons in 1973, to 1700 metric tons in 2007 (6). The other problem in teasing out SV40 as a cause of MM from asbestos lies in the latency period between asbestos exposure and MM clinical diagnosis. According to the CDC, the latency period for someone who is first exposed to asbestos and clinical disease is 20-40 years. It may be, given asbestos still remains in many buildings, and exposure to it is inevitable when removal is completed, in addition to the long latency period between exposure and disease, that we have not yet come to the dramatic decrease in MM health officials have predicted. Or, is SV40 infection the culprit and the increase in incidence of MM will continue to rise? According to the SV40 Foundation, "SV40 is a problem that federal government authorities have not addressed responsibly because the government's own vaccine programs are responsible for the spread of the virus throughout the western world".(2) It is no question the public has not forgotten, even after almost 50 years, and much more research into this area is needed, to attempt to confirm SV40's causal role, if any, in the development of MM.

References

(1) Mesothelioma. Retrieved April 2010.

(2) "Treating SV40 Cancers." Retrieved April 2010.

(3) Carbone, M. "Simian virus 40 and human tumors: It is time to study mechanisms." Retrieved from PubMed April 2010.

(4) López-Ríos F, Illei PB, Rusch V, et al. "Evidence against a role for SV40 infection in human mesotheliomas and high risk of false-positive PCR results owing to presence of SV40 sequences in common laboratory plasmids". Lancet. 2004;364:1157-1166.

(5) Yang, Haining et al. "Mesothelioma Epidemiology, Carcinogenesis, and Pathogenesis." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov.proxy.lib.uiowa.edu/pmc/articles/PMC2717086/. Retrieved from PubMed April 2010

(6) CDC. "Mesothelioma" Retrieved from PubMed April 2010.

http://scienceblogs.com/aetiology/2010/04/malignant_mesothelioma_and_sim.php

 
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Pleural Mesothelioma - $2 Million Asbestos Verdict

 

$2 million awarded in local asbestos case

Former city man blames cancer on products used in odd jobs

By CHRIS DETTRO

THE STATE JOURNAL-REGISTER

Posted Aug 17, 2009 @ 11:29 PM

Last update Aug 18, 2009 @ 12:40 AM

A Sangamon County jury last week awarded a former Springfield postal worker and part-time handyman $2 million at the conclusion of an asbestos-exposure trial.

William Willis, who lived most of his life in the Williamsville area and on Springfield’s north end, was a night-shift U.S. Postal Service employee from 1966 until retiring in 1992. He testified during the 3 /2-week trial before Circuit Judge Pete Cavanagh that he did various odd jobs during the day, including truck and bus driving and home construction and repair in the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s.

Willis alleged in his suit that he had used asbestos-containing pipe manufactured by CertainTeed Corp. and asbestos-containing joint compound made by Bondex International Inc. and Georgia-Pacific Corp., among others. Asbestos was phased out of the products in 1977.

Willis, now 69 and living in Arkansas, alleged that he had developed incurablepleural mesothelioma, a cancer of the lung lining, as a result of exposure to the asbestos. He said in his suit that the products contained no warnings concerning the asbestos content, and if there were warnings, they were inadequate.

The jury found Bondex International alone liable and awarded Willis $1.5 million in damages and his wife, Sharon Willis, $500,000 for loss of consortium. It found CertainTeed and Georgia-Pacific not to be negligent. 

The defendants argued that Willis had used their products decades ago and was mistaken about which products he actually used. Their attorneys also argued that the amount of asbestos in the defendants’ products wasn’t enough to harm, and that there was no known cause for Willis’ mesothelioma.

Other defendants either settled with Willis or were dismissed from the case prior to the verdict.
Stephen Kaufmann of the Springfield office of HeplerBroom LLC, along with other HeplerBroom colleagues, represented Georgia-Pacific, one of the three defendants who remained through trial.

“I think the jury heard a very complex case and returned a verdict that was supported by the evidence and brought justice to Mr. And Mrs. Willis,” said Jack Davis of Davis Law Offices LLC in Springfield, a member of Willis’ legal team.

Davis also praised the way Cavanagh handled the trial.

“The courtroom can be a very tough atmosphere, and when you have a level-headed, even-tempered judge who is fair to both sides, it makes the lawyers’ jobs so much easier,” he said. 

Willis’ pretrial motion asking to add a claim for punitive damages was denied.

The jury award is subject to a reduction of $1.4 million due to prior settlement amounts.

Chris Dettro can be reached at 788-1510.

Copyright 2009 The State Journal-Register. Some rights reserved

 

http://www.sj-r.com/business/x640866866/-2-million-awarded-in-local-abestos-case

 
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Pleural Mesothelioma

pleural_mesotheliomaPleural Mesothelioma is the most common type of malignant mesothelioma (accounting for an approximate 75% of all documented cases of the disease) and affects the section of the mesothelium called the pleura. Although the most common type of malignant mesothelioma, the disease is still somewhat of a rarity. As a result, pleural mesothelioma is often confused with other types of diseases, such as lung cancer and viral pneumonia. Lung cancer can be caused by asbestos (asbestos lung cancer), though it differs from pleural mesothelioma in that it is a malignancy of the lung tissue itself, as opposed to pleural mesothelioma which is a malignancy of the tissue casing of the lungs. Viral pneumonia shares certain symptomatic similarities with pleural mesothelioma and is often misdiagnosed as such.

The most common presenting symptom of pleural malignant mesothelioma is chronic chest pain. A buildup of fluid inside the pleural space can cause severe and chronic chest pains; this is called pleural effusion. Steps can be taken to drain the fluid and relieve the pain (with the possibility of recurrence) or surgery can be performed to close the pleural space (with virtually no possibility of recurrence). Some of the other notable symptoms associated with pleural mesothelioma include:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Chronic coughing
  • Weight loss
  • Fever

Prognosis in this disease is difficult to assess consistently because there is great variability in the time before diagnosis and the rate of disease progression. In large studies of pleural mesothelioma patients, important prognostic factors were found to be stage, age, performance status, and histology. Histology means the specific type of mesothelioma cancer cells that are found. Various surgical procedures may be possible in selected patients. They typically provide long-term survival without cure. For patients treated with aggressive surgical approaches, factors associated with improved long-term survival include epithelial histology, no cancer found in the lymph nodes, and negative surgical margins. That means that the surgeons were able to remove all of the cancer, as far as they can tell, and there is a margin of healthy tissue around the tumor that they removed. For those patients treated with aggressive surgical approaches, nodal status is an important prognostic factor. In other words, if you had cancer in your lymph nodes your prognosis is worse than if no cancer was found in the nodes.

Median survival has been reported as 16 months from date of diagnosis for patients with malignant pleural disease confined to the pleura, and 5 months from date of diagnosis for patients with extensive disease. In some instances the tumor grows through the diaphragm making the site of origin difficult to assess. The diaphragm is the thin muscle that separates the lungs from the abdomen. The diaphragm helps you breathe. Cautious interpretation of treatment results with this disease is important because of the selection differences among series. Patient selection can influence the outcomes of clinic trials. Effusions, both pleural and peritoneal, represent major symptomatic problems for at least two-thirds of patients (the National Cancer Institute has a statement on Cardiopulmonary Syndromes for more information on this subject).

Staging of Pleural Mesothelioma

Patients with stage I disease have a significantly better prognosis than those with more advanced stages. Because of the relative rarity of this disease, exact survival information based upon stage is limited. A proposed staging system based upon thoracic surgery principles and clinical data is shown below. It is a modification of an older system. Other staging systems that have been employed include the current international TNM staging system.

  • Stage I: Disease confined within the capsule of the parietal pleura (i.e., ipsilateral (on the same side) pleura, lung, pericardium, and diaphragm).
  • Stage II: All of stage I with positive intrathoracic (N1 or N2) lymph nodes.
  • Stage III: Local extension of disease into the following areas, e.g., chest wall or mediastinum, heart or through the diaphragm or peritoneum, with or without extrathoracic (outside of the thorax) or contralateral (on the opposite side of) (N3) lymph node involvement.
  • Stage IV: Distant metastatic disease, meaning spread of the cancer to distant sites.

These stages are then put into two groups: Localized malignant mesothelioma, which is defined as stage I described above; and advanced malignant mesothelioma which includes stages II, III, and IV above. In practice, mesothelioma is generally categorized as either localized or advanced and the stage numbers like stage II or III are not used.

Treatment Option for Pleural Mesothelioma

Standard treatment for all but localized mesothelioma is generally not curative. Although some patients will experience long-term survival with aggressive treatment approaches, it remains unclear if overall survival has been significantly altered by the different treatment modalities or by combinations of modalities. Surgery and chemotherapy are examples of different treatment modalities. Extrapleural pneumonectomy in selected patients with early stage disease may improve recurrence-free survival, but its impact on overall survival is unknown. Extrapleural pneumonectomy is surgery to remove a diseased lung, part of the pericardium (membrane covering the heart), part of the diaphragm (muscle between the lungs and the abdomen), and part of the parietal pleura (membrane lining the chest). Pleurectomy (removing the pleura) and decortication (removal of part or all of the external surface of an organ) can provide relief from symptomatic effusions, discomfort caused by tumor burden, and pain caused by invasive tumor. Operative mortality from pleurectomy/decortication is less than 2%, while mortality from extrapleural pneumonectomy has ranged from 6% to 30%. Given the high mortality rate from a pneumonectomy, it is important to find a surgeon who has significant experience in doing such an operation. See our list of mesothelioma specialists to find experienced surgeons.

The addition of radiation therapy and/or chemotherapy following surgical intervention has not demonstrated improved survival. The use of radiation therapy in pleural mesothelioma has been shown to alleviate pain in the majority of patients treated; however, the duration of symptom control is short-lived. Single-agent and combination chemotherapy have been evaluated in single and combined modality studies. The most studied agent is doxorubicin, which has produced partial responses in approximately 15% to 20% of patients studied. Some combination chemotherapy regimens have been reported to have higher response rates in small phase II trials; however, the toxic effects reported are also higher, and there is no evidence that combination regimens result in longer survival or longer control of symptoms. Recurrent pleural effusions may be treated with pleural sclerosing procedures. However, the efficacy of these procedures depends on the bulk of the tumor. If the tumor is too large they may not be helpful.

 
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Combining Immunotoxin and Chemotherapy for Pleural Mesothelioma

Name of the Trial -July 14, 2009 • Volume 6 / Number 14


Phase I Study of SS1(dsFv)-PE38 Immunotoxin in Combination with Pemetrexed Disodium and Cisplatin in Patients with Unresectable Malignant Epithelial Pleural Mesothelioma (NCI-08-C-0026).

Dr. Raffit HassanDr. Raffit Hassan

Principal Investigator
Dr. Raffit Hassan,NCICenter for Cancer Research

Why This Trial Is Important
Malignant mesothelioma is a rare cancer that affects the tissue lining the chest (pleura) or the abdomen (peritoneum). Based on the appearance of the cancer cells under a microscope, mesothelioma is classified as epithelial, sarcomatoid, or mixed; epithelial mesothelioma is associated with slightly better outcomes than the other types.

Patients with pleural mesothelioma (mesothelioma of the pleura) that cannot be removed by surgery (unresectable or inoperable) are usually treated with combination chemotherapy using the drugs pemetrexed and cisplatin. Although this therapy can delay progression of the disease, the benefits are often short lived and most patients die within 2 years.

Researchers hope an experimental immunotoxin called SS1(dsFv)-PE38 (or SS1P) can improve the outcomes of patients with unresectable mesothelioma. SS1P is a genetically engineered biological agent in which part of a bacterial toxin is linked to an antibody that recognizes the protein mesothelin. Mesothelin is found in abundance on the surface of epithelial mesothelioma cells and cells of several other types of cancer. In laboratory studies, combining SS1P with chemotherapy leads to increased antitumor activity compared with either therapy alone.

In this trial, patients with inoperable epithelial pleural mesothelioma will be given SS1P in combination with pemetrexed and cisplatin. The dose of SS1P will be increased in consecutive groups of 3–6 patients until the maximum tolerated dose is reached. Researchers will also study any side effects of this combination treatment and examine how SS1P is broken down by the body.

“Mesothelin is highly expressed in epithelial malignant mesothelioma, making it a good target for tumor-specific therapy with SS1P,” said Dr. Hassan. “Given the marked synergy between SS1P and chemotherapy in preclinical studies, combining them could potentially result in increased antitumor activity in patients.” 

For More Information

See the list of entry criteria and trial contact information or call the NCI Clinical Trials Referral Office at 1-888-NCI-1937. The call is toll-free and confidential.

http://www.cancer.gov/ncicancerbulletin/071409/page6

 
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Dynamic Contrast-Enhanced MRI of Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma

A Feasibility Study of Noninvasive Assessment, Therapeutic Follow-up, and Possible Predictor of Improved Outcome

  1. Frederik L. Giesel, MD,
  2. Helge Bischoff, MD,
  3. Hendrik von Tengg-Kobligk, MD,
  4. Marc-André Weber, MD,
  5. Christian M. Zechmann, MD,
  6. Hans-Ulrich Kauczor, MD, and
  7. Michael V. Knopp, MD, PhD

Author Affiliations

1.     *From the German Cancer Research Center (Drs. Giesel, Tengg-Kobligk, Weber, Zechmann, and Kauczor), Department of Radiology, Heidelberg, Germany; Thoraxklinik (Dr. Bischoff), Heidelberg; and Department of Radiology (Dr. Knopp), The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH.

Abstract

Study objective: Dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI (DCE-MRI) followed by pharmacokinetic analysis has been successfully used in a variety of solid tumors. The aims of this study were to evaluate the feasibility of DCE-MRI in malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM), to differentiate benign from pathologic tissue and compare pharmacokinetic with clinical parameters and survival in order to map out its microcirculation; and to compare pharmacokinetic with clinical parameter and survival in order to improve our understanding of thein vivo biology of this malignancy.

Methods: Nineteen patients with a diagnosis of MPM who were scheduled to receive chemotherapy with gemcitabine were enrolled in the study. DCE-MRI was performed before treatment (n = 19) and after the third cycle (n = 12) and sixth cycle (n = 7) of chemotherapy. An established pharmacokinetic two-compartment model was used to analyze DCE-MRI. Tumor regions were characterized by the pharmacokinetic parameters amplitude (Amp), redistribution rate constant (kep), and elimination rate constant (kel). Kinetic parameters of tumor tissue and normal tissue were compared using the Studentt test. Patients were classified as clinical responders or nonresponders according to clinical outcome, and these groups were compared with the pharmacokinetic parameters derived from DCE-MRI.

Results:Normal and tumor tissue could be distinguished by the pharmacokinetic parameters Amp andkel (p ≤ 0.001). Clinical responders had a mediankep value within the tumor of 2.6 min, while nonresponders showed a higher value (3.6 min), which coincided with longer survival (780 days vs 460 days).

Conclusions: DCE-MRI can be used in patients with MPM to assess tumor microvascular properties and to demonstrate tumor heterogeneity for therapy monitoring. High pretherapeutic values ofkep within the tumor correlated with a poor overall response to therapy.

http://chestjournal.chestpubs.org/content/129/6/1570.abstract?sid=9a8b5538-eec2-418b-9b85-2941e3664a81

 
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Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma

An Update on Biomarkers and Treatment

  1. Mandira Ray,MD and
  2. Hedy Lee Kindler, MD

Author Affiliations

1.     Affiliations: From the Section of Hematology/Oncology, University ofChicagoMedicalCenter,Chicago,IL.
  1. Correspondence to:
    Hedy Lee Kindler, MD, Section of Hematology/Oncology, University of Chicago Medical Center, 5841 S Maryland Ave, MC 2115, Chicago, IL 60637; e-mail: hkindler@medicine.bsd.uchicago.edu

Abstract

Although the insulating properties of asbestos have been known for millennia, the link between asbestos exposure and mesothelioma was not recognized until 1960, when it was first described in South African asbestos miners. The incidence of mesothelioma parallels asbestos usage with a latency of 20 to 40+ years; thus, patient numbers are declining in theUnited States but rising in the developing world. Radiation, genetics, and possibly simian virus 40 are less common causes. Diagnosis can be challenging, since the results of pleural fluid cytology testing are often negative despite repeated sampling. No staging system adequately predicts prognosis in the unresected patient. Newly described biomarkers, including soluble mesothelin-related peptide, megakaryocyte potentiation factor, and osteopontin, may predict which asbestos-exposed individuals will develop mesothelioma, and may prove useful in assessing response to treatment. Since surgery cannot eradicate all residual microscopic disease, a multimodality approach is encouraged. Metaanalysis suggests that pleurectomy/decortication may achieve outcomes similar to those of extrapleural penumonectomy. The standard first-line chemotherapy for unresectable disease is pemetrexed plus cisplatin. This combination improves response, survival, time to progression, pulmonary function, and disease-related symptoms. Carboplatin is often substituted, with similar results. Other active agents include raltitrexed, gemcitabine, and vinorelbine. Novel agents in clinical trials include inhibitors of the epidermal growth factor receptor, vascular endothelial growth factor, mesothelin, and histone deacetylases. Although disappointing results of early trials did not confirm promising preclinical data, recent studies have suggested that some novel agents may be effective. As we learn more about mesothelioma biology, molecularly targeted agents may become treatment options.

http://chestjournal.chestpubs.org/content/136/3/888.abstract?sid=1aa6badf-9bbe-4c0e-8746-375548cb3b5d

 
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Dynamic Contrast-Enhanced MRI of Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma

A Feasibility Study of Noninvasive Assessment, Therapeutic Follow-up, and Possible Predictor of Improved Outcome

  1. Frederik L. Giesel, MD,
  2. Helge Bischoff, MD,
  3. Hendrik von Tengg-Kobligk, MD,
  4. Marc-André Weber, MD,
  5. Christian M. Zechmann, MD,
  6. Hans-Ulrich Kauczor, MD, and
  7. Michael V. Knopp, MD, PhD

+ Author Affiliations

1.     *From the German Cancer Research Center (Drs. Giesel, Tengg-Kobligk, Weber, Zechmann, and Kauczor), Department of Radiology, Heidelberg, Germany; Thoraxklinik (Dr. Bischoff), Heidelberg; and Department of Radiology (Dr. Knopp), The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH.

 Abstract

Study objective: Dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI (DCE-MRI) followed by pharmacokinetic analysis has been successfully used in a variety of solid tumors. The aims of this study were to evaluate the feasibility of DCE-MRI in malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM), to differentiate benign from pathologic tissue and compare pharmacokinetic with clinical parameters and survival in order to map out its microcirculation; and to compare pharmacokinetic with clinical parameter and survival in order to improve our understanding of thein vivo biology of this malignancy.

Methods: Nineteen patients with a diagnosis of MPM who were scheduled to receive chemotherapy with gemcitabine were enrolled in the study. DCE-MRI was performed before treatment (n = 19) and after the third cycle (n = 12) and sixth cycle (n = 7) of chemotherapy. An established pharmacokinetic two-compartment model was used to analyze DCE-MRI. Tumor regions were characterized by the pharmacokinetic parameters amplitude (Amp), redistribution rate constant (kep), and elimination rate constant (kel). Kinetic parameters of tumor tissue and normal tissue were compared using the Studentt test. Patients were classified as clinical responders or nonresponders according to clinical outcome, and these groups were compared with the pharmacokinetic parameters derived from DCE-MRI.

Results:Normal and tumor tissue could be distinguished by the pharmacokinetic parameters Amp andkel (p ≤ 0.001). Clinical responders had a mediankep value within the tumor of 2.6 min, while nonresponders showed a higher value (3.6 min), which coincided with longer survival (780 days vs 460 days).

Conclusions: DCE-MRI can be used in patients with MPM to assess tumor microvascular properties and to demonstrate tumor heterogeneity for therapy monitoring. High pretherapeutic values ofkep within the tumor correlated with a poor overall response to therapy.

  • angiogenesis
  • dynamic contrast enhanced MRI
  • malignant pleural mesothelioma
  • therapy monitoring

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is an aggressive neoplasm that is usually fatal. Unfortunately, standard therapeutic regimens including surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation frequently yield unsatisfactory results (median survival, 6 to 12 months). While the use of single-agent or combined cytotoxic therapy protocols has been studied in numerous clinical trials123 without significantly affecting the prognosis, therapeutic options have increased with newer multitargeted drugs. Although the disease is relatively rare, it is estimated that > 80,000 new cases will occur during the next 20 years inNorth America alone.4 Therefore, it is essential to advance noninvasive imaging methodologies that can map outin vivo pathophysiologic characteristics of MPM, their homogeneity or heterogeneity, and to assess biological response to new therapies that might impact disease survival.

There is widespread agreement on the need to improve current treatment strategies and implement advanced cross-sectional imaging techniques for noninvasive functional assessment of tumor response. Traditional morphologic imaging techniques such as CT and MRI provide little insight into tumor metabolism and pathophysiology and are not well suited to assess early biological response.

Until now, CT has been widely used for the diagnosis, staging, and monitoring therapeutic response in MPM. The key structural findings include unilateral pleural effusion, nodular pleural thickening, interlobular fissure thickening, and tumor invasion of the chest wall, mediastinum or diaphragm.5 However, CT can be misleading in the evaluation of the extent of disease because it can underestimate early chest wall invasion and peritoneal involvement,6 and has well-known limitations in the evaluation of mediastinal lymph node metastases.7 Conventional MRI has been shown to be superior to CT. However, the identification of residual vital tumor tissue during therapy based on anatomic changes alone is difficult. Functional imaging methods that allow for a better understanding of tumor biology and provide more accurate prognostic and early response-to-therapy information are highly desirable. One functional modality with the potential to demonstrate metabolic activity within a tumor is fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG)-positron emission tomography (PET).789 It has been even demonstrated that FDG-PET is especially valuable for distinguishing between benign and malignant pleural processes.10

While PET using FDG-PET has been explored in the research setting, it has not achieved wide utilization in MPM9 because of its cost, limited availability, and lack of anatomic information. Recently, integrated PET and CT systems have allowed the advantages of high sensitivity (PET) to be combined with a high-resolution method (CT) in a single co-registered image. It has been shown that the integrated PET-CT scanning improves T staging and N staging of lung cancer in comparison to other imaging methods, but similar data are lacking for MRM.12 Niethammer et al8 demonstrated that integrated PET-CT identifies more accurately patients with MPM response than either CT or PET alone. However, PET-CT systems are expensive, and other functional imaging modalities, such as dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI (DCE-MRI), might be of benefit in this setting.

DCE-MRI has been successfully employed in patients with solid tumors for tumor characterization as well as to assess response to therapy.13 DCE-MRI involves the sequential acquisition of images during IV administration of a gadolinium chelate. The temporal passage of contrast media through tissue, including neoplastic (neoangiogenic) tissue, reflects its microcirculation and can be used to assess and map out differences in microcirculation and vascular permeability.131415 It has been shown in breast cancer that the pharmacokinetic analysis of DCE-MRI provides parameters that show significant correlation with angiogenesis. Moreover, this method has enabled an earlier prediction of response to chemotherapy in some trials13141516 when compared to assessment of morphologic changes. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the capabilities and feasibility of DCE-MRI to assess biological effects in patients with MPM undergoing chemotherapy by using pharmacokinetic parameters of contrast enhancement to characterize response to therapy. Assessing the enhancement profiles noninvasively might allow the characterization of biological aggressiveness of the tumors and help identify those that are unlikely to respond to standard regimens and who, therefore, should be directed to more aggressive therapy regimes or experimental clinical trials.

Materials and Methods

Patients and Diagnostic Evaluation

A total of 19 patients (17 men and 2 women; age range, 53 to 77 years; mean, 62.5 years) received a diagnosis of stage II (n = 9) or stage IV (n = 10) MPM, and subsequently were included in a prospective clinical trial with single-agent chemotherapy. All reported patients were enrolled under an investigational protocol that was approved by the investigational review board of the university clinics. Written informed consent was obtained from all patients. DCE-MRI was performed as an exploratory surrogate biomarker prior to therapy (n = 19) and after the third cycle (n = 12) and sixth cycle (n = 7) of chemotherapy. Only seven patients (stage II) were scanned successfully all three times. All patients underwent chemotherapy with six cycles of gemcitabine, 1,250 mg/m2, which was dose adjusted according to tolerance (2′,2′-difluorodesoxycytidin).17 All patients underwent a pretreatment pleural biopsy that was evaluated with immunohistopathology18 Tumors were staged and classified according to World Health Organization/International Union Against Cancer staging criteria and MPM histopathologic classification of Butchart et al.19

Initial pharmacokinetic analysis of the MRI parameters were compared with survival. Retrospectively, the population was divided into responders (complete remission or partial responders, n = 4) and nonresponders (stable disease and progressive disease, n = 15). Pharmacokinetic values (amplitude [Amp], redistribution rate constant [kep]; elimination rate constant [kel]) of these two groups were correlated with survival prior to therapy.

MRI and Pharmacokinetic Analysis

DCE-MRI was performed using a standard clinical 1.5-T magnetic resonance system (Siemens; Erlangen, Germany) with a T1-weighted two-dimensional fat gradient-echo sequence (repetition time, 7.0 ms; echo time, 3.9 ms; matrix, 256 × 256; bandwidth, 260 Hz/s; 15 axial slices; 22 sequential repetitions). Gadolinium-diethylenetriamine penta-acetic acid was administered by slow injection (0.6 mL/s of 0.1 mmol/kg) after the third repetition using a power injector (Tomojet System; GE Healthcare;Buckinghamshire,UK). Imaging was acquired during shallow breathing. DCE-MRI source data were postprocessed using a pharmacokinetic two-compartment model on a personal computer as previously described.2021 Color maps reflecting pharmacokinetic parameters (Amp,kep) were generated. Regions of interest (ROIs) were generated from the color maps and evaluated for the whole tumor, adjacent normal tissue (muscle, liver, and spleen), as well as focal “hot spots” within the tumor. Tumor regions with pixels of colors purple, tortoise, green, yellow, and white were assigned to malignant tissue representing higher values for Amp andkep. Each ROI was placed after consensus had been reached between two experienced readers (F.L.G., M.V.K.). Three pharmacokinetic parameters—Amp,kep, andkel—were calculated for each ROI.

Technical Implementation

The thoracic location of MPM initially posed technical challenges due to physiologic motion of the lung and thoracic vessels that required optimization of acquisition parameters relative to standard breast DCE-MRI. The dynamic magnetic resonance sequence that was used in previous studies2021 for solid-tumor imaging was adjusted to thoracic imaging by reducing the repetition time from 40 to 7 ms. Shallow continuous breathing with a relative faster contrast media administration rate (0.6 mL/s vs 0.3 mL/s for breast DCE-MRI) was employed. Baseline pharmacokinetic color maps of the tumor area demonstrated most tumors to be heterogeneous, displaying a variety of contrast enhancement patterns depicted by characteristic signal-intensity time curves (Fig 1 ). The color-coded map readily displayed this heterogeneity of enhancement and was helpful in identifying the vascular tumor volume as well as hot spots that were evaluated separately.

Statistical Analysis

Statistic analysis and graphic visualization were performed (SigmaPlot; SPSS;Chicago,IL). A Studentt test was used to compare the value of kinetic parameters in normal and tumor tissue (level of significance, p = 0.05). The Pearson correlation was calculated comparing survival and kinetic parameters (Amp,kep,kel).

Results

Pretherapeutic pharmacokinetic quantification of the tumor area presented heterogeneous color maps with different contrast-enhancement patterns showing by characteristic signal-intensity time curves(Fig 1). The color-coded maps were very helpful to successfully guide semiautomated ROI analysis, separating normal from malignant tissue.

Subjects were classified as clinical nonresponders or responders. Nonresponders (n = 15) were characterized by short median survival (460 days). In contrast, responders (n = 4) demonstrated longer median survival (780 days) [Fig 2 ]. Nonresponders had significantly higherkep values than did responders(Fig 2). There was no correlation between the responder and nonresponder groups for the other two parameters (Amp andkel).

Noninvasive pharmacokinetic tissue analysis enabled a classification of normal and tumor tissue based on differentiation by Amp,kep, andkel. A statistically significant difference between normal and neoplastic tissue was achieved with the parameters Amp andkel (p ≤ 0.001) [Fig 3 ]. The hot spots of the tumors demonstrated intense contrast enhancement, with high Amp, comparable to highly vascularized organs,ie, spleen(Fig 3). The hot spots within the tumor were also characterized by a rapid washout pattern (positivekel), whereas the remainder of the tumor typically showed a slowly rising pattern of enhancement represented by a negativekel.

Four patients, all classified as clinical responders, demonstrated decreased contrast enhancement after therapy. The 15 nonresponding patients demonstrated elevatedkep values at baseline that continued to increase during therapy. In three cases, the initial clinical response was followed by a relapse during chemotherapeutic intervention after the sixth cycle. This coincided with an increase ofkep and increase in tumor size.Figure 4 presents one of these three cases;kep increased from 2.7/min prior to therapy up to 3.7/min after the sixth cycle. Chest pain and dyspnea developed within 2 months. The pharmacokinetickep parameter after the third DCE-MRI examination increased to 4.3/min. Despite another six cycles of chemotherapy, thekep value continued to rise to 6.0/min, and the patient eventually succumbed to the disease.

Discussion

This pilot feasibility study successfully demonstrates that parametric mapping based on DCE-MRI in MPM depicts not only the lesion and its extent but can map out the heterogeneity of microcirculation within the full thoracic extent of MPM. The pharmacokinetic parameters (Amp,kep,kel) enabled differentiation of normal and tumor tissue. In addition, the kinetic parameterkep may provide prognostic information with regard to therapeutic response.

MPM has been causally related to asbestos exposure and usually develops 20 to 50 years after such exposure.22 MPM has been increasing in incidence and is expected to reach its peak incidence within the next 2 decades. However, treatment results remain unsatisfactory. Although surgery,232425 radiotherapy, and chemotherapy (systemic and intrapleural)252627282930 have been proposed to improve outcome, none of them have yet documented improved survival. It is widely assumed that a more successful treatment of MPM will require a multitargeted approach. Until such an approach emerges, there have been continuing attempts to change prognosis using single-agent approaches.

Imaging may play an important role in identifying candidates for particular therapies and in documenting early responses. Conventional morphologic imaging methods such as plain chest radiography or multidetector CT can demonstrate pleural effusion, pleura thickening, rib destruction, encasement of the thorax, and mass extension typical of MPM.31 Therapy response or even clinical response prediction based on morphologic assessment without functional information is difficult and to our knowledge has not been described for MPM. Functional imaging with FDG-PET3233 to image the tumor metabolism in MPM has shown that most MPM demonstrate high metabolic tumor rate. Changes in FDG uptake reflect tumor aggressiveness and response to therapy.34 DCE-MRI is also a well-established imaging technique in clinical trials and is less time intensive and cost intensive. Reports31314151617 have described significant correlation of tumor histopathology, tumor angiogenesis, and pharmacokinetic results of DCE-MRI; these studies have largely focused on stationary organs such as the brain, breast, and cervix, leaving open the question whether the technique is applicable in more mobile organs such as lungs, liver, and kidneys.

To date, DCE-MRI has been limited by respiratory motion and heart pulsations during repetitive image acquisitions. However, by using shallow breathing, shortening the image acquisition time, and adapting the injection rate, pharmacokinetic analysis of the contrast-enhancement characteristics is feasible. This technique provides a noninvasive insight into tumor microcirculation and vascular permeability in a spatially resolved manner prior to and/or during therapy. Normal tissue has a distinctly different enhancement pattern compared with MPM. MPM was characterized by a rapid initial increase in signal followed by slower rise in signal over the duration of the DCE-MRI, which was very different pattern from that of normal tissue. Hot spots within the tumor demonstrated an even more rapid initial uptake of contrast but also had a rapid washout as well. These phenomena—which reflect different levels of neoangiogenesis and tumor vascular permeability—have been described for other tumors such as glioblastomas, cervix carcinomas, and breast cancer.31314151617 Tumor heterogeneity is often associated with therapy failure.3 Parametric mapping based on the DCE-MRI information of MPM demonstrated this characteristic. This finding suggests that a more heterogeneous MPM might not respond as well to chemotherapy, and consideration should be given to other, more aggressive treatment approaches in such patients.

Neovascularization has been shown to be necessary for tumor growth.835 Although some exceptions exist, many studies11 have confirmed the negative impact of elevated tumor vascularization on prognosis. Among the reported proangiogenic factors, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is the most well known.363738 A number of investigators36394041 have reported a significant relationship between vascular density and VEGF expression in a variety of tumors. Moreover, overexpression is associated with a poor prognosis in some neoplasms.42 Furthermore, studies35434445 confirm that high tumor expression of proangiogenetic factors (VEGF, VEGF type C) in MPM is associated with shorter survival. Because VEGF is known as a potent inducer of microvascular hyperpermeability, the pharmacokinetickep may reflect the microvascular effects of this growth factorin vivo.45 New therapeutic interventions,ie, anti-VEGF antibody and other antivascular-targeted agents, require functional imaging to detect early biological effects in order to noninvasively assess response and enable individual treatment outside of clinical trials. In this study,kep values were predictive of treatment response and survival.

CT imaging is the major imaging modality of the chest but underestimates early chest wall invasion and peritoneal involvement6 as well as assessment of mediastinal lymph node metastases.7 A study46 using perfusion CT showed promising results in assessing metastatic lung nodules undergoing therapy. Although not relevant in this population, perfusion CT exposes the patient to substantial radiation that limits the ability to study it in the research setting, where strict limits are placed on nonclinical exposures. Similarly research PET studies are limited by radiation exposures, and so only one or two PET scans can be used during most clinical research studies before nonclinical exposure limits are reached.

This pilot study has several limitations. First, the sample population was relatively small because this was a single-center trial and MPM is relatively uncommon. Therefore, when several patients were unable to complete the full series of imaging due to progression of their disease, only a few patients actually completed all three scans. Additionally, the technique described here does not reflect the latest and most rapid MRI techniques available today, as we had to fix the technique for the duration of the study, which took several years to accrue. All these limitations can be readily overcome in new, multicenter trials using state-of-the-art equipment.

In summary, this pilot study demonstrates encouraging preliminary results including the feasibility and application of functional imaging parameters derived from the noninvasive DCE-MRI to characterize the microcirculation of MPM and its response to monotherapy. The kinetic contrast enhancement parameters were predictive of response although overall survival remained poor. This pilot study encourages further studies including DCE-MRI and pharmacokinetic analysis to assess MPM. As DCE-MRI continues to improve in temporal and spatial resolution, further increases in the accuracy of pharmacokinetic analysis are anticipated. Overall, this methodology could be widely available and would provide additive information by the direct mapping of functional and morphologic information to advance disease assessment and management.

Figure 1.

View larger version:

Figure 1.

Tumor heterogeneity demonstrated by DCE-MRI.Top,A: color-coded display demonstrates a left MRM with heterogenous enhancement. Different ROIs are drawn in green lines (muscle, tumor ROIs 2 to 5 [R5, R4, R3, R2], aorta).Bottom,B: signal-intensity curves of different tumor regions in MPM. Tumor ROI-2 and ROI-3 represent strong and fast enhancement followed by a moderate washout (hot spots). Tumor ROI-4 and ROI-5 display less vascular regions of the tumor. a.u. = arbitrary units; S/Spre = signal intensity/signal intensity prior to contrast media.

Figure 2.

View larger version:

Figure 2.

Median survival differentiated bykep per minute retrospectively between the responder group (n = 4) and nonresponder group (n = 15). The nonresponders demonstrate a higherkep, with a median of 3.6/min vs 2.6/min for responders.

Figure 3.

View larger version:

Figure 3.

Differentiation of tumor, muscle, spleen and liver parenchyma using the pharmacokinetic parameters Amp (in arbitrary units andkel per minute). The ROI within the MPM tumor reveals a strong initial enhancement similar to spleen, followed by slow accumulation indicated by a negativekel. Pharmacokinetic clustering using Amp vskel. See legend ofFig 1 for abbreviation not used in the text.

Figure 4.

View larger version:

Figure 4.

A patient with a partial response to gemcitabine therapy with one pretreatment DCE-MRI examination (top left,A) and three posttreatment DCE-MRI examinations (top right,B,bottom left,C,bottom right,D) is presented. Prior to therapy (top left,A), chest wall infiltration and encasement of the parenchyma are visible in the right lung. Color-coding maps display the heterogeneity of tumor microcirculation with an initialkep of 2.7/min based on total tumor ROI. After the sixth cycle, a decrease in tumor volume is noted, and an increasedkep of 3.7/min was calculated (top right,B). The patient was classified clinically as a responder. The patient left the hospital and returned after 3 months with pain and massive tumor growth in the right lung (bottom left,C). Thekep rose to 4.3/min. Despite further chemotherapy, the tumor progressed with akep of 6.0/min (bottom right,D), and the patient died.

Acknowledgments

We acknowledge the extensive review and comments by Peter L. Choyke, MD, from the National Cancer Institute Molecular Imaging Program.

Footnotes

·        Abbreviations: Amp = amplitude; DCE-MRI = dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI; FDG = fluorodeoxyglucose;kel = elimination rate constant;kep = redistribution rate constant; MPM = malignant pleural mesothelioma; PET = positron emission tomography; ROI = region of interest; VEGF = vascular endothelial growth factor

·         

    • Accepted December 13, 2005.
    • Received August 11, 2005.

http://chestjournal.chestpubs.org/content/129/6/1570.full

 
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