Mesothelioma can be a challenging illness. In addition to taking a long time to experience symptoms, some of the symptoms can lead you (or your doctor) to consider a long list of diagnoses before mesothelioma.
Depending on your history, the cough and difficulty breathing that is often attributed to seasonal colds or asthma could also be indicators of mesothelioma. It is essential to seek medical care to learn more about your symptoms and whether you have had toxic asbestos exposure.
Here’s what you should know about getting your diagnosis and moving forward with your mesothelioma case.
Signs and symptoms
Before you can get your diagnosis, you need to be able to recognize the indicators that you may have mesothelioma. Since mesothelioma shares symptoms with other illnesses, you may need to seek a second opinion if the treatment for other conditions is not helping.
When your healthcare team starts to investigate whether you have mesothelioma, you will likely have a series of tests which could include:
- CT scans of your chest and abdomen
- MRI or PET scans
In addition to a diagnosis, your healthcare professional will also do testing to determine the stage of your mesothelioma. Your stage will have a significant impact on determining your treatment plan and your prognosis.
Once you have a diagnosis and a treatment plan, you will need to act quickly; if you plan to file a claim. The statute of limitations for a toxic asbestos exposure lawsuit is three years in Washington and Oregon.
Although three years can seem like a long time to file a claim, there can be a significant amount of time between the symptoms that may have indicated you have mesothelioma and getting a diagnosis. The time for the statute of limitations starts when you “knew or should have known” that you had mesothelioma. One of the ways to demonstrate your knowledge of your illness is through your diagnosis.
You will need to talk to an experienced professional to help you pursue your toxic exposure claim. While some cases can settle out of court, others include skilled litigation.