Most people associate mesothelioma and other asbestos-related medical conditions with the inhalation of asbestos fibers that get trapped in the lungs. However, asbestos can also enter the body by being ingested.
When asbestos is swallowed, it can cause mesothelioma to develop in the abdominal lining. This condition is called peritoneal mesothelioma. It’s rarer than pleural mesothelioma, which typically develops in and around the lungs. Nonetheless, it’s just as difficult to diagnose early and just as difficult to treat successfully.
How asbestos can get into drinking water
Through the 1970s, some areas had asbestos-cement pipes and water mains. Over time, pipes start to corrode, which can send the materials they’re made of into the water that passes through them.
Natural disasters like floods, fires and landslides can also cause disturbances that can loosen asbestos from older water lines. When there’s construction in or demolition of a structure containing asbestos, appropriate abatement measures need to be taken to help ensure that it doesn’t enter the local water supply as well.
A matter of degrees
The degree of danger that asbestos in drinking water can pose depends on a combination of two things – namely, how much asbestos is in the water and how long someone has been consuming that water. If you have been diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma, but you have no history of working with asbestos or spending a significant amount of time in a structure that was found to have a dangerous amount of asbestos, it may be wise to consider whether your water supply could have been contaminated.
By finding out how you got sick, you can better determine whether there are parties that can and should be held liable. Seeking experienced legal guidance can help you get the information required to make a case. This can give you a better chance of obtaining compensation to help you recover medical expenses, lost wages and other damages and allow you and improve your quality of life as you face challenges ahead.