A new global review of data studies published in July by Brazilian medical journal Revista Gaúcha de Enfermagem found that asbestos accounts for the largest portion – 37.5 percent – of cancer-causing substances associated with lung cancer in the workplace.

The team that produced “Lung cancer related to occupational exposure: an integrative review” processed 32 databases over a ten year period from 2009 to 2018. Researchers discovered that the most exposed workers came from the secondary sector, with 50% of jobsite-related lung cancer cases belonging to former industry workers, and 6.2% belonging to former construction workers. The study found that other occupations with significant histories of asbestos exposure in the workplace included mining, transport, and painting. 

Unfortunately, throughout their careers, many workers were unknowingly exposed to numerous carcinogenic substances, products, and materials. What’s even more disappointing is that many employers and manufacturers were aware of this fact and did little to protect their workers. It has since been proven that occupational exposures have long been seen as the primary causes of both lung cancer and mesothelioma cases.

Although asbestos is banned in many countries (the United States not included), lung cancer and mesothelioma diagnoses caused by asbestos continue to rise. “Lung cancer related to occupational exposure: an integrative review” stated that lung cancer accounts for the most common malignant tumor cases with 2.1 million diagnoses made worldwide in 2018, and a yearly increase of 2% in new diagnoses per year. 

“These findings are important because they reaffirm what we have been arguing for years on behalf of our clients and their families,” said Joe Belluck, managing partner of Belluck & Fox. “Asbestos presents a clear danger to everyone who is exposed to it. We must continue to fight for a full ban on asbestos, and we must continue to hold employers and manufacturers accountable for knowingly putting workers in harm’s way.”

Belluck & Fox has decades of experience representing clients with lung cancer and mesothelioma caused by asbestos. Our experienced attorneys maintain a database of job sites and employers known to have used asbestos and exposed employees. If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, or lung cancer due to asbestos, reach out today for a free consultation.