Most of us take breathing for granted, but when this simple physical function becomes a challenge, it can change your life. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), over 180 years of potential life was lost for every 100,000 Americans under age 75 with chronic lower respiratory illnesses in 2008.
Respiratory issues affect people of all ages. In fact, nearly 10% of all American children were afflicted with asthma in 2010. From allergies to the common cold, respiratory issues affect everyone at some point or another.
If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with a breathing problem that was caused by the negligence of another party, you may be eligible to pursue compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering and other damages. Lewis & Keller has experience representing victims that have suffered respiratory issues and we believe that those responsible should be held accountable.
Types of Respiratory Disorders
Some breathing disorders are short-term and others permanent, and the symptoms and treatment of each can vary. Some types of respiratory illnesses include:
- Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome
- Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
- Cystic Fibrosis
- Lung Cancer
- Pulmonary Fibrosis
- Restrictive lung disease
The symptoms of respiratory problems can interfere with daily life, especially in cases of asthma and COPD. In fact, COPD is the 4th leading cause of death in the U.S., according to the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute. Patients must often file for disability as COPD is a progressive disease that worsens until death.
Causes of Breathing Problems
Some breathing problems are caused by everyday environmental factors, like pollen and pollution, whereas others are a result of infections or exposure to harmful substances. Some causes of breathing issues include:
- Exposure to chemicals / toxins
- Exposure to chemical fumes
- HIV / AIDS
- Pulmonary disorders
- Anxiety disorders
These are just some examples of factors that can cause respiratory ailments. Symptoms for such disorders often vary. Those who believe they have a breathing-related problem should seek medical attention.
Symptoms of Respiratory Issues
The symptoms of a respiratory illness will vary depending on the type of disorder and the level to which the disorder has progressed. Some symptoms include:
- Breathing problems
- Chest pain
- Shortness of breath
- Tightness in chest
- Excess mucus
- Coughing up mucus or blood
- Rapid breathing
- Irregular heart beat
Tumors or obesity can contribute to the severity of symptoms of respiratory illnesses. It is important to seek medical attention if one has ailments, as many of these disorders will worsen if left untreated.
In extreme cases where respiratory disorders are left untreated, the afflicted may even die. If a loved one was lost from respiratory problems that may have been caused by another party’s negligence, you may be eligible to pursue legal recourse in a wrongful death lawsuit.
Treating Breathing Disorders
Depending on the illness a patient is suffering from, treatment can vary. After a doctor has taken a complete medical history, diagnostic tests will help determine what disorder is present.
Some methods used to treat breathing disorders include:
- Antihistamines & decongestants
- Medical injections
- Portable oxygen
- Smoking cessation therapy
Considering that some illnesses can progress to a life-threatening stage, it is important for anyone experiencing these symptoms to seek treatment from a healthcare professional. If the symptoms have been caused by a workplace injury, exposure to hazardous materials or another cause attributed to another party, a personal injury attorney can help determine whether you are eligible to pursue legal recourse.
Contact Our North Carolina Personal Injury Lawyers
CDC data shows that over 7,500 deaths occurred in North Carolina in 2007 due to diseases of the respiratory system. If your family has been affected by breathing ailments that are the result of another entity’s negligence, Lewis & Keller may be able to help.
Our law professionals understand the physical, emotional and financial strain that can occur when a loved one has lost the basic function of normal breathing, especially in cases with a poor prognosis. Our personal injury lawyers have the expertise and resources to defend you, regardless of who is responsible.
Our offices are located in Winston-Salem and Greensboro, and we proudly serve clients in the following areas:
- High Point
- …and many of the surrounding communities
Call 866-299-1769 to find out how our over 150 years of combined experience can benefit you.
For an expedited review, simply fill out our Free Case Evaluation form at the bottom of this page and we will contact you.