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The experienced Riverside work injury attorneys at DiMarco | Araujo | Montevideo have spent over three decades helping lung and respiratory injury patients get awarded the maximum possible compensation through a positive trial verdict or settlement. Lung injuries that happen while working or elsewhere have the potential to be quite tragic given how critical and fragile the lungs are.
Call our Riverside lung injury attorneys right away to set up a free initial consultation and case evaluation to discuss your specific lung injury whether it was caused by blunt trauma, disease, or exposure to poisons or irritants. We are considered by some to be the best lung injury lawyers in Riverside, and we will work very diligently to live up to those high standards.
You and your family probably have a plethora of questions and concerns about what happens next and what your legal options are. You may also be wondering about how to bring a traumatic or acute lung injury legal cause of action and/or how to file a long-term work exposure lung injury workers’ compensation claim. Call us anytime at (951) 977-7787 as it is important for you to get some legal guidance before proceeding with your punctured lung case, asbestos case, hard metal dust inhalation case, or any other lung injury case. We will discuss your injury claim during the free consultation, including:
Lung injuries can be very serious so be sure to always take the proper precautions like wearing protective gear and breathing masks. Traumatic lung injuries may have occurred any time a blow or trauma happens to a person’s neck, back or chest. Furthermore, having rib pain is reason enough to check for lung injuries as rib injuries and lung injuries often go together. Acute lung injuries (ALI) are one type of traumatic lung injury. They are mainly caused by a direct injury to the lung like pneumonia or blunt trauma but can also be caused by indirect injuries to the lung like pancreatitis.
Pulmonary lung injuries occur after long-term exposure to powders, dust, irritant, asbestos, toxins, chemicals, and more. See below for more examples of this. Another version of acute lung injury is more severe and is called acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). Typically, low lung levels (airway collapse) and reduced lung compliance are also symptoms of ALI and ARDS.
As stated in the above paragraph, any injury or trauma to the chest, back or neck regions is a sign of possible lung injury. Chest injuries are especially suspect since the lungs make up a large portion of that region. Other symptoms to look for include rapid and shallow breathing, a bluish tint around the mouth and nose, a feeling of breathlessness, a dry cough, a difficulty to get a full breath, wheezing, pain in the chest or ribs, clubbing (fingernails that curve over the top of your fingertips), an elevated heart rate, fever, hypotension, lightheadedness, dyspnea and even no detectable breathing.
Call a doctor if you have these symptoms as it is always better to discover lung injuries earlier rather than later. Also, please be aware that many of the above symptoms worsen over time and can be confused with other injuries or conditions.
There are various causes of lung injuries as they can happen as a result of direct or indirect trauma to the lungs, inhaling irritants over an extended period, and inflammation. The types of irritants that affect the lung after long-term exposure include toxins, pollutants, silica dust, asbestos fibers, hard metal dust (like cobalt dust from drilling), gases (such as ammonia and chlorine), dust, grain, bacteria in unmaintained hot tubs and humidifiers, sugarcane, sawdust, airborne chemicals, moldy hay, dust from bird and animal droppings, and powders.
Some of the other causes of lung injuries or lung disease are injury to the chest or ribs, impaled objects, puncture wounds, major trauma, fat embolism, bicycle or skateboarding accident, sepsis, poisoning, being in a car accident, eclampsia, a direct airbag blow to the chest, truck accident, a sports injury like being hit by a bat or tackled hard, motorcycle accident, air embolism, radiation, drugs, inhalation of noxious fumes, burns, near drowning, amniotic fluid embolism, pneumonia, fungal infections, parasitic infections, pancreatitis, and pulmonary aspiration. It is important to seek medical attention as soon as possible after any of these injuries. Also be on alert for how you are feeling as traumatic injuries to your lungs could collapse them or cause some broken or cracked ribs to puncture them.
TRALI (Transfusions Related Acute Lung Injury) is a serious potential complication of blood transfusions. Other possible causes for lung injuries even include talcum baby powder as it was found to be causing lung disease or cancer in babies or adults if they inhaled a significant amount over time. That form of lung disease is called talcosis. Additionally, beauty mineral powders have been found to cause lung disease with long-term use. Unfortunately, in our world full of chemicals and toxins produced in mass by large corporations, doctors are discovering more situations where lung injuries are common. We have included a few serious examples of this in the workers’ compensation section below as it is the factory and manufacturing employees that can get it worst since they are constantly around concentrated levels.
The US passed the Miner Safety Act in 2006 to try to improve the conditions that miners and drillers worked in and to help produce more technology to lessen some of the risks of mining. Unfortunately, mining still has one of the largest rates of fatal injuries among the dangerous industries (agriculture and construction are both also in the top five). Miners face many dangers both when they are working under and above ground including the mine collapsing, toxic gas or fumes inhalation, equipment failure, cave-ins, explosions, falling equipment, rock or tools, electrocutions, and many others.
An additional top ailment that miners face is that of developing respiratory problems, trace metal lung disease, hard metal lung disease, black lung, or pneumoconiosis disease. Drilling, working with or mining for coal, workshop dust, and hard metal dust like cobalt seems to be a direct way to put toxins into the body, injure our lungs, poison our systems, and lower one’s immune system. The mines are safer than they were in 1979 when we started the firm but they still cause many lung injuries today.
In the industry of pyro-powder-producing, aluminum powder flakes are found within air samples throughout the factories and plants. It has been proven that employees can develop very serious lung disease from long-term exposure to the metal’s dust and powder. It is important to call us today to discuss your ailment as you do not want to wait any longer: lung disease gets worse over time if you continue to breathe in anything harmful.
One disturbing side effect of technology is what happens to the electronics and trace metals after we throw them away or recycle them. It has been found that those who do the work of melting the metals and breaking TVs, computers, circuit boards, and other electronic devices down to their components are inhaling toxic levels of workplace dust and hard metal dust. In some studied cities where this is done, the air quality is poor throughout the city and hard metal dust can be found in air and dust samples from around town.
Food processing employees and others who work with butter flavoring may be at risk of developing severe lung disease, respiratory injuries, or being afflicted by asthma due to the “natural” ingredient of diacetyl. Workers in bakeries, snack factories, microwave popcorn factories, flavoring companies, popcorn factories, and mass food production plants are some of the people who could be exposed to diacetyl and be at quite a high level of danger. Some call it “popcorn lung” and the symptoms do not cease when someone ceases to be exposed to it. One possible condition that it leads to is bronchiolitis obliterans which causes the airways to thicken and narrow.
Asbestos was used heavily in construction and other fields due to its many positive characteristics such as the fact that it is resistant to heat, chemical, and electrical damage. It was used throughout houses and buildings. It has been found to cause diffuse pleural thickening, mesothelioma, pleural plaques, malignant lung cancer, asbestos warts, and asbestosis after long-term exposure to it. Certain products and environments around today are still at risk of containing asbestos including popcorn ceilings, old homes, and old plaster. Given how dangerous asbestos is and the many years of medical studies proving long-term exposure and medical issues are related, be sure to call our firm right away to discuss your possible case.
Not only are construction workers in a career where traumatic injuries to the neck and chest are common, they also work in environments with elevated amounts of dust, sawdust, dirty air, and other irritants. A good example of this is the people who work at the table saw all day constantly breathing in sawdust, splinters, and other particulates. Employees at lumber yards and rock quarries have similar issues.
Explosions of all kinds are dangerous to be near for many reasons. One you may not know about is that people near an explosion can get severely injured or killed from blast lung injuries (BLI). They are caused by blast waves from detonations and they can tear the lungs and cause hemorrhages and contusions on the lungs. Symptoms and signs of BLI include hemoptysis, cough, wheezing, decreased breathing sounds, apnea, chest pain, hemodynamic instability, and dyspnea. Blast lung injuries are serious and need immediate medical attention.
Even though lung injuries and lung disease are still possible with the right gear, it is important to wear all the suggested safety gear and masks. This includes gas masks, goggles, hard hats, nose and mouth masks, and more. It is also important to be aware of and use all the safety devices on the equipment, heavy machinery, tools, and saws.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA.gov) has made some progress in improving the work environments in every industry across the country. OSHA still states, though, that “Every day in this country, more than fourteen workers lose their lives in preventable workplace tragedies.” With that statistic in mind, OSHA continues to tighten safety regulations and rules. This includes the most dangerous industries where lung injuries are still common like the construction industry, farming and agricultural industry, mining industry, and athletics.
OSHA investigates accidents, collapsed mines, injuries, mines, tools, equipment, manufacturers, and safety code violations by conducting site inspections, interviewing witnesses and employees, talking with management and ownership, reviewing maintenance records, checking logs, and by conducting other investigations. Employers need to try harder to protect their employees since the amount of people still getting lung injuries every year on the job remains high.
Filing a claim for workers’ compensation will help you recoup part of your lost income. To get your maximum possible compensation (possibly including your full income), there needs to be a third party who also had a hand in causing your lung injury. There is a large variety of people and companies that could be suspect of being a third party for lung injuries. Third parties could include manufacturers, companies, contractors, repair shops, sub-contractors, factories, government entities, part suppliers, or anyone else who may also be at fault but is not your employer. Be sure to contact us soon if there is a potential third party as those cases are greatly improved the sooner that one of our Riverside workers’ compensation attorneys can start investigating the incident and preparing the dual cases.
Doctors use your high-resolution computerized tomography scan (HRCT), work history, chest x-rays, pulmonary function tests (like blowing into a spirometer), medical history, bronchoalveolar lavage (studying cells from air sacs in the lungs), exercise tests, bronchoscopy (the removal of a small piece of lung tissue for studying), and video-assisted thorascopic surgery (surgical lung biopsy). Once the specific diagnosis has been made, treatment options vary. Some of the possible options include anti-fibrotic, pressure control ventilation, lung transplantation, azathioprine, corticosteroid drugs, oxygen therapy, acetylcysteine drugs, surgery and mechanical ventilation. As you can see, a lot of new and improved technology has come into the field of lung injury treatments so be sure to call your doctor right away.
Our Riverside lung injury lawyers are prepared to help you and use their experience and know-how to take the stress of this case off of your shoulders. If after meeting with us and discussing the numerous costs and important steps that are needed to file, negotiate, litigate, investigate, and potentially take your lung injury case to trial, please know that our firm will always be here for you. We hope this website assists you in learning more about injury law and that you get to your maximum medical improvement in a timely manner. Call our Riverside injury lawyers at (951) 977-7787 or fill out our online form for your free consultation.