Asbestos—medical issues

The following PI & Clinical Negligence practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Asbestos—medical issues
  • Types of asbestos
  • Blue asbestos or crocidolite
  • White asbestos or chrysotile
  • Brown asbestos or amosite
  • Anthophyllite
  • Tremolite and Actinolite
  • Exposure to asbestos
  • Asbestos-related diseases
  • Asbestosis
  • More...

Asbestos—medical issues

It is essential for those pursuing personal injury claims on behalf of claimants who have contracted disease as a result of exposure to asbestos to have an understanding about the nature of the substance and the serious, often terminal, medical conditions that can be suffered by those exposed to it.

Types of asbestos

Asbestos is the generic term used for a group of six naturally occurring silicate minerals composed of long, thin, fibrous crystals. In the 1970s and the 1980s, asbestos was extensively mined in a number of countries around the world, with the leading producers being Canada and South Africa. Asbestos, in its various forms, was very commonly used in industry and in construction until the 1980s. Its prevalence was a reflection of its attractive properties, such as sound absorption and resistance to fire, heat and electricity.

It was therefore used extensively in lagging for boilers and pipes and for the insulation of electrical wiring. Asbestos was also heavily used in the manufacture of automotive components, such as brake and clutch linings and gaskets.

In the construction industry, many of the materials used contained asbestos such as cement, insulation, roofing and floor tiles.

There are five types of asbestos which are relevant to occupational disease arising from exposure to asbestos:

Blue asbestos or crocidolite

This is the type of asbestos most likely to cause serious disease. What makes crocidolite

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