As consumers, we rely on the manufacturers and distributors of the products we use daily to ensure that these products do not pose any unreasonable risks to our safety when used according to label instructions. This is true of all types of products, including the foods and medications we consume, the parts used to make our vehicles run, and even the herbicides we use for crops, lawns, and gardens.
In 1974, the Monsanto Company patented glyphosate, a synthetic herbicide and the active ingredient in their Roundup brand products. As good marketing schemes go, the company also designed Roundup-ready GMO seeds, and the usage of the herbicide increased 15-fold. Many other companies have since begun manufacturing and selling products with glyphosate as an ingredient.
Glyphosate, however, is linked to an increased risk of a cancer known as non-Hodgkin lymphoma. If you have been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma following years of exposure to Roundup or other products containing glyphosate, the experienced Roundup cancer attorneys at Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers would like to speak with you.
Plaintiffs have filed more than 100,000 cases against the Monsanto Company (which has since become a part of Bayer) involving individuals who become sick through exposure to and use of Roundup. The opportunity to file a claim seeking compensation for the expenses and impacts of your diagnosis remains available for those who need it.
What Is Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma?
Non-Hodgkin lymphoma, also known as non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is a cancer that begins in the white blood cells that make up part of the immune system. These cells are known as lymphocytes, and they are present all over the body, including:
- In the lymph nodes, which are small bean-sized collections of lymphocytes and other immune system cells located throughout the chest, abdomen, neck, and pelvis. In all, there are about 600 lymph nodes in the body.
- In the spleen, which is an organ located beneath the lower ribs on the left side of the body. The spleen makes lymphocytes and stores healthy blood cells while filtering out damaged blood cells, bacteria, and cell waste.
- In the bone marrow, which is the spongy tissue at the center of certain bones in the body. The marrow is responsible for making new blood cells.
- In the thymus, which is a small organ located behind the upper breastbone, in front of the heart, that makes T-lymphocytes.
- In the adenoids and tonsils, which are collections of lymph tissue located behind the throat that make antibodies that target inhaled or swallowed germs.
- In the digestive tract, including the stomach, intestines, and other organs.
There are two main types of lymphocytes where non-Hodgkin lymphoma can begin:
- In the B-lymphocytes, make antibodies that attach to germs and mark them for destruction by other parts of the immune system.
- In the T-lymphocytes, which destroy germs or abnormal cells in the body and help boost or slow the activity of other immune system cells.
There are many different types of non-Hodgkin lymphomas, and classifying the type a patient is experiencing often takes time and the consideration of:
- The type of lymphocyte the lymphoma starts in.
- How the lymphoma appears under a microscope.
- The chromosome features of the lymphoma cells.
- The presence of certain proteins on the surface of the lymphoma cells.
The Symptoms of Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
The symptoms of non-Hodgkin lymphoma can vary widely, depending on the type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma the individual is suffering from and how far the disease has progressed. Some of the general symptoms often experienced include:
- Painless swelling of one or more lymph nodes
- Unexplained fever.
- Night sweats.
- Persistent fatigue.
- Loss of appetite.
- Unexplained weight loss.
- Cough or chest pain.
- Abdominal pain.
- The sensation of bloating or fullness due to an enlarged spleen.
- Itchy skin.
- Rashes or skin lumps.
Diagnosing Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
To diagnose non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a physician may perform:
- A complete physical examination with a particular focus on checking for swollen lymph nodes or an enlarged liver or spleen.
- A lymph node biopsy, which involves withdrawing cells from the lymph node with a needle and then studying the cells under a microscope to look for abnormalities that would indicate cancer.
- Certain imaging scans, such as CT, MRI, or PET scans that can help the doctor see an enlargement of nodes or organs within the body.
- Other tests as required to determine non-Hodgkin lymphoma type and the progression of the disease. A common test performed after a non-Hodgkin lymphoma diagnosis is a bone marrow biopsy, which can help doctors determine if the disease has progressed to the bone marrow.
Treating the Disease
The most common treatment for non-Hodgkin lymphoma is chemotherapy. This involves administering a powerful drug designed to kill the cancer cells. Chemo can be given by IV or in pill form.
Radiation therapy is also a common treatment for non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and is often the sole source of treatment for slow-growing or early stage lymphomas. Radiation involves aiming high-powered energy beams at the cancerous areas to kill the cancerous cells.
Other common treatments for non-Hodgkin lymphoma include:
- Immunotherapy, including monoclonal antibodies, man-made proteins that act like human antibodies in the immune system.
- A bone marrow transplant, sometimes called a stem cell transplant. This procedure involves first destroying the cancerous bone marrow of the patient through chemotherapy or radiation and then transplanting healthy marrow from the individual’s own body or from a donor into the body to begin making new blood cells.
- Surgery. Surgical removal of lymphomas is rare, as other treatments have been found more effective. However, some of the reasons for surgical treatment of non-Hodgkin lymphoma include removing a limited amount of the tumor from an organ such as the stomach, or removing a cancer-compromised organ, such as the spleen.
Other Roundup-Linked Cancers
Non-Hodgkin lymphoma has been the subject of most of the Roundup lawsuits thus far. However, studies show a potential link between glyphosate and two other types of cancer.
Multiple Myeloma. Chinese studies indicate that glyphosate induces benign monoclonal gammopathy, a condition in which the plasma cells in the bone marrow produce abnormal proteins. About 3 to 4 percent of the U.S. population may have this condition. However, a small portion of the individuals who have monoclonal gammopathy will also acquire multiple myeloma.
Multiple myeloma is a cancer of the plasma cells. It presents with symptoms such as:
- Bone pain, most often occurring in the back, hips, and skull.
- Bone weakness and bones that fracture easily.
- Anemia, which is a shortage of red blood cells that results in weakness, shortness of breath, and dizziness.
- Low white cell counts, which can make it harder for the body to fight infections.
- High levels of calcium, which can cause extreme thirst, dehydration, kidney problems, constipation, loss of appetite, and drowsiness or confusion.
- Pain or weakness in the muscles.
- Confusion, dizziness, or slurred speech
Leukemia. Studies also suggest that glyphosate could be responsible for increasing the risk of certain types of leukemia. Leukemia is also a cancer that forms in white blood cells.
Symptoms of leukemia include:
- Fever or chills.
- Persistent fatigue.
- Frequent or severe infections.
- Unexplained weight loss.
- Swollen lymph nodes.
- Easy bleeding or bruising.
- Recurrent nose bleeds.
- Tiny red spots on the skin.
- Night sweats.
- Bone pain or tenderness.
Living With Cancer
Cancer is a difficult disease to live with. Collectively, U.S. cancer patients pay about $5.6 billion to treat the disease. While insurance companies and federal or state indigent care programs shoulder some of these costs, a cancer diagnosis usually precedes the inability to work during treatment and recovery, difficulty paying bills, the depletion of savings accounts, the delay of other necessary medical services, or even bankruptcy.
Studies indicate that the younger adults and people of color are more likely to experience the most negative impacts on their quality of life from the disease, as are those with less education and those who earn smaller incomes. These individuals are more likely to be uninsured and have as many options for paying the high treatment costs.
Seeking Compensation for Your Illness
Cancer is an expensive illness to treat, and the treatments are often described as harder to handle than the symptoms of the disease. Individuals who have filed Roundup lawsuits in the past and those currently filing their claims usually seek both economic and non-economic damages. In the legal arena, the word “damage” means compensation.
Compensation for the costs associated with your illness is referred to as economic damages, while compensation for the quality-of-life impacts you have incurred from your illness are non-economic damages.
The Type of Compensation You Can Seek
Commonly included in Roundup lawsuit damage claims are:
- Medical expenses, such as the cost of the imaging and laboratory tests required for diagnosis, your physician’s services, the services of oncology specialists and surgeons, prescription medication both for the provision of chemotherapy drugs as well as pain relievers and other medicines used to treat the side effects or complications of chemo.
- Lost wages for work you missed while undergoing the treatment or recovery from your illness.
- Loss of future earning capacity if your illness prevents you from earning an income.
- Physical pain and suffering.
- Emotional distress.
Do You Qualify for Compensation?
T determine whether your case meets the eligibility criteria for a Roundup lawsuit, your attorney will consider:
- The type of cancer you have. The most common Roundup-linked cancer for individuals to suffer from is non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Other types of cancers that scientists have linked to glyphosate-containing herbicides are multiple myeloma and leukemia.
- Exposure. If you have a history of using Roundup or other products that contain glyphosate regularly for at least two years and have been diagnosed with one of the cancers listed above, our attorneys would like to speak with you about your case.
- Timing. One additional consideration of your eligibility to seek compensation through a Roundup lawsuit is the length of time that passed between exposure and diagnosis. If you used Roundup for the first time last week and were subsequently diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma this week, Roundup is likely not the cause of your illness. This is because non-Hodgkin lymphoma, like most cancers caused by exposure to a carcinogenic substance, has a latency period. This is the time it takes for the cancer to develop after initial exposure. The latency period for non-Hodgkin lymphoma is at least two years after initial exposure, but can even be longer than five years in most cases.
Let’s Talk About Your Exposure to Roundup
Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, is committed to helping the injured obtain the compensation they deserve after becoming ill because of a dangerous product such as Roundup. As the Roundup lawsuits are mostly multi-district litigation at this point, so you need a product liability attorney with experience handling these cases.
If you’ve been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma, multiple myeloma, or leukemia after regular use of Roundup or other glyphosate-containing products, let us help you understand your legal options for obtaining compensation for the expenses and impacts of your illness.
With offices across both Florida coasts, you can easily reach the Roundup cancer lawyers at Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, at (833) 552-7274, or you can write to us using our online contact page.
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