Benzene And Leukemia

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Benzene and Benzene Exposure

Benzene is a chemical compound that is colorless and transparent, with a distinctive odor that is pleasing to the senses. Historically, it has been used in aftershave lotion, but is also an additive in household items such as laundry detergent and cleaning liquids, glue, and paint. In the past, it was commonly viewed as a miracle chemical because of its practical use as an additive in gasoline, its flammability, and its ability to easily dissolve in water. Unfortunately, researchers later learned that, aside from its useful purposes, it is also a highly toxic carcinogen that is now linked to some forms of leukemia and other blood-related illnesses. This did not become public knowledge until as late at the 1980s, even though its toxicity was well-documented as early as the 1940s. Unknowingly, employees working in specific industries became target to benzene-related diseases, as they came into contact with the chemical on a regular basis for years at a time. It took decades for individuals to discover the effects of benzene exposure on their health, and recently, individuals have been more proactive with these issues, seeking out attorneys to help them file lawsuits against manufacturing companies.


Leukemia is a cancer of the white blood cells within the human body. The bone marrow is responsible for producing undeveloped cells, called blasts. Blasts eventually become white blood cells, but when exposed to toxic chemicals, either by ingestion or inhalation, cells can experience mutations. Cells divide and reproduce so rapidly, that a single mutated white blood cell can cause the onset of leukemia. If left untreated, unhealthy cells soon prohibit healthy ones from developing. In this manner, a person has no way to fight off disease, since white blood cells are responsible for regulating the immune system. Most people with this disease die of ordinary illnesses such as pneumonia, influenza, or the common cold, simply because they have virtually no white blood cells left to fight the infections. A person suffering from leukemia may also experience a swollen abdomen. A swollen spleen is a common indicator of leukemia. Depending on the patient's age and how far the disease has spread, treatment options may vary. Chemotherapy, inhibitor drugs, and radiation therapy are the most common forms of treatment, which are also financially and emotionally draining. Individuals suffering from these diseases often face high medical bills, in addition to being prohibited from working, which can pose a strain on families. Families are beginning to seek out legal representation to cover these expenses.

Steps Required for Legal Action

1.Do your research. Spend some time on the Web, making phone calls, and reviewing various attorneys in your area. It is best to locate a toxic tort attorney, one who specializes in occupational disease cases such as asbestos and benzene exposure. A successful candidate should have an extensive background in this specific field. Be sure to review previous caseloads and find testimonials. Determine if the individual has a strong reputation in the legal community. Also, research the outcome of these cases. How many cases has the attorney won?
2.Gather all documents related to your case. Find all medical records, medical bills, employment history papers, and other documents you feel can help you file a claim. It is important to document everything you can when seeking compensation for work-related illnesses.
3.Set up an appointment for a consultation with an attorney you trust. Most of the time, attorneys do not charge fees for this service, as they are only reviewing your documents to see if you can make a viable claim. If you have a case, an attorney can review payments and other fees to be applied for his or her services at a later date.
4.Next, your attorney can work with you to file a complaint, conduct investigations, and form your lawsuit. In this trying time, you should not have to worry about paperwork and other litigation processes. A lawyer represents your best interests and upholds your legal rights. He or she is responsible for all paperwork, deadlines and other obligations associated with your lawsuit.
5.If the company you are suing does not contest the claim, you, your lawyer, and the company can work together to reach a settlement. If the company does contest, your lawyer can help you bring the issue to a higher court. More importantly, you attorney is the best resource available to help you win your case and receive compensation for your suffering and losses.