Silicosis is a type of lung diseased caused by silica dust exposure through inhalation. It is generally characterized by inflammation/scarring of certain parts of the affected person’s lungs. Symptoms may include cough, fever, shortness of breath, bluish-tinged skin (cyanosis) and other body issues.
Silicosis is often referred to by occupation-related terms, such as grinder’s asthma, potter’s rot, miner’s phthisis, and other terms. Due to its similarity to other lung conditions, silicosis is sometimes misdiagnosed as simple pneumonia.
Silicosis is generally thought of as an industrial disease. It is caused by repeated or prolonged exposure to silica by means of inhalation. It is common in jobs where a person is exposed to silica through working with various silica-containing stones and rocks. Thus, it is often associated with the stone-cutting industry.
Silicosis may be caused by:
- Failure to use proper breathing protection equipment
- Inadequate ventilation in work areas
- Use of power tools that create large amounts of silica dust, in comparison with hand tool methods
- Negligence of a supervisor or manager in instructing a worker
- Poor safety and hazard policies in the workspace
Lastly, there are four different categories of silicosis: Acute, Complicated, Accelerated, and Chronic Simple silicosis. These are based on factors such as the extent of the injuries, the length of exposure time to the silica, and the time period of onset of symptoms. Acute silicosis is the least severe classification, while chronic silicosis is the most serious and advanced type, resulting from years of exposure.
Silicosis injuries can lead to lawsuits to recover damages for the injuries. These damages may include recovery of lost wages, medical costs, and legal fees. Silicosis lawsuits are particularly common in cases where there is negligence involved on the part of the employer.
One of the main difficulties in a silicosis legal claim is that the symptoms often do not appear until many years after exposure. Thus, proving liability can be a difficult task that often requires the assistance of a legal professional.
Silicosis is a serious condition that can often be debilitating for the injured person. You may need to hire a personal injury lawyer in your area if you need help filing a silicosis legal claim. Your attorney can inform you of what types of legal options are available to you. If you need to file documents or other paperwork, your attorney can assist with those as well. Also, your lawyer will be able to represent you in court once trial meetings and hearings start.