What is Black Lung?
Occupational hazards are an inherent part of many jobs, although some employment options are more hazardous than others. Many injuries sustained on the job can be repaired with minor treatment and time away from work, but there are also a variety of conditions that can result in serious disabilities that have the potential to affect a worker for the rest of his or her life.
For coal miners and others who work directly with coal, coal workers’ pneumoconiosis (CWP) is one of these conditions, and it is commonly referred to as black lung. Workers’ compensation programs can provide benefits that can help to offset the long term medical costs associated with CWP, but obtaining these benefits can sometimes involve an obstacle course of legal barriers and leave victims with less than adequate compensation.
What is CWP?
CWP is the result of significant amounts of coal dust being inhaled into the lungs over a long period of time. The body has no means of removing this dust from the lungs, and eventually the body begins to form fibrous tissue masses around the foreign bodies in order to protect the rest of the lung from the contaminant. These abnormal tissue masses can cause complications such as the following:
- Severe chronic coughing
- Reduced lung efficiency and capacity
- Lesions and other damage to lung tissue
- Tissue death
These symptoms do not go away over time, and the medical costs associated with treating these problems over the course of a lifetime can be astronomical, and significant loss of income can be experienced due to a reduced ability to work.
If you are suffering from black lung and are concerned about not receiving full benefits from a workers’ compensation claim, you need the help of an experienced Fayetteville workers’ compensation attorney. Call Scudder & Hedrick, PLLC, today at 910-488-1600 to schedule an initial consultation with an experienced legal professional.