While asbestos exposure has drastically gone down in recent years, workers in previous generations bore the brunt of the harmful effects of exposure. These workers and their families were also victims through secondary exposure.
Secondary asbestos exposure occurs when someone who works directly with asbestos brings it home to their family members. In the past, workers rarely had any personal protective equipment and coming into contact with asbestos was fairly common. While men dominated the asbestos-related industries workforce, their spouses and children were indirectly exposed in the following ways:
- When asbestos fibers attached themselves to clothes that got mixed with others during laundry
- When anyone who handled such clothes was directly exposed to these asbestos fibers
- Through physical contact, such as hugs and greetings
- Through contaminated furniture or household appliances
Secondary Exposure Is as Harmful as Direct Exposure
There is pretty much no difference between primary and secondary exposure to asbestos. Any kind of exposure carries an element of risk to the health of those exposed. If a close family member is suffering from mesothelioma-like conditions and your occupation exposed you to asbestos, they could be secondary exposure victims.
Previously, if an individual was not exposed directly to asbestos, doctors concluded that they could not be suffering from mesothelioma. However, medical advancements have made it easier to diagnose mesothelioma correctly. If your loved one suffers from mesothelioma due to a history of secondary asbestos exposure, it is necessary to get them some measure of justice.
It may not be so straightforward to pinpoint the exact cause of asbestos responsible for their condition since the development of mesothelioma takes years. However, connecting the dots can be easy with the assistance of someone who has experience navigating such cases.