Chemicals have become a part of our everyday lives. Some are harmless and improve our quality of life. While others may pose a threat to our health. Benzene is one of the chemicals that puts anyone exposed to it at risk. From mild irritation to more serious complication it is a known risk to human health, but can benzene cause cancer?
What is Benzene?
A constituent of crude oil it is one of the most widely used chemical in the United States. Besides being found in the fuels we use to power transportation, it is the base chemical for a wide variety of products, despite being a known carcinogen.
How do you get exposed?
The most common way that people are exposed to benzene is by working for, or living near, industries that utilize it. Individuals who work or live near the petroleum industry, for example are at a higher risk as benzene is one of the most basic petrochemicals. Industries where individuals may be at risk of exposure include:
- Auto Repair
- Waste Management
Benzene exposure can happen through inhalation, skin contact or ingestion. The short term effects of contact with small amounts of benzene can be relatively minor, but the effects of long term exposure can be serious and even life threatening.
Can Benzene cause cancer?
The dangers of benzene have been known since the industrial revolution where manufacturing became more widespread as did the use of industrial chemicals such as benzene. As medical science progressed it was discovered that the long term effects of benzene exposure include blood disorders and some cancers. Benzene can damage bone marrow, where blood cells are generated which can suppress blood cell production. This and other complications can negatively impact a person’s long term health. The conditions most often associated with benzene exposure include:
- Acute Myeloid Leukemia
- Aplastic Anemia
- Multiple Myeloma
- Myelodysplastic Syndrome
- Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
You can find out more about benzene and the risk of cancer at the American Cancer Society.
What you can do
If you or a loved one suffers from cancer that you suspect might be related to benzene exposure there are actions you can take. The companies responsible for the exposure can be held accountable for their actions. A lawsuit is often necessary to maximize financial settlements in cases of benzene exposure. The Dysart Law Firm, P.C. has gone against some of the world’s largest corporations to obtain compensation for victims of benzene exposure caused by corporate negligence. Contact us today at 888.586.7041.