Linda’s lung cancer diagnosis was a big surprise. She had never smoked or used any kind of tobacco products. However, she had worked as a welder for 23 years. Linda learned that workplaces can lead to an occupational disease like lung cancer. In fact, Illinois passed the Workers’ Occupational Diseases Act to handle situations just like Linda’s.
Common Occupational Diseases
Medical conditions that can be rationally connected to an employee’s work conditions are occupational diseases. In other words, common sense tells you that there is a connection between the person’s work and their disease.
Some of the most common occupational diseases are:
- Skin conditions like contact dermatitis, urticaria, sunburn, and skin cancer;
- Lung disorders, like asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), tuberculosis, pneumonitis, silicosis, asbestosis; and
- Cancers related to an occupation, like mesothelioma and lung cancer.
An occupational disease can occur because of the workplace environment where an employee is exposed to radiation, noise, dust, and toxic chemicals.
Careers Most Likely to Cause an Occupational Disease
Some workers are more vulnerable than others:
- Hairdressers, caterers, chefs, healthcare workers, printers, machinist, auto mechanics, and construction workers often develop skin conditions.
- Miners, quarry workers, tunnel operators, bakers, chemists, farmers, factory workers, laboratory workers are just a few of the workers that might have lung-related occupational diseases.
- Many workers who use harsh chemicals or chemical-processes may develop cancer, including miners, printers, machinists, painters, welders, and construction workers.
Any workplace might contribute to a worker’s chronic medical condition. If you have been exposed at work and later developed a disease, you may be able to file a workers’ comp claim.
Yes, Your Workplace Can Lead to an Occupational Disease
Some on-the-job injuries, like Linda’s, may show up after years of exposure. However, occupational diseases caused by workplace conditions usually are covered by workers’ comp insurance.
At Osvaldo Rodriguez, PC, we have over 20 years’ experience helping clients with nursing home injuries and neglect. Schedule a free initial consultation with Osvaldo Rodriguez, a lawyer who has dedicated his career to assisting people like you. Just call us at 708-716-3441 or fill out the Contact form on our website. We represent clients throughout the state of Illinois, including Cook, DuPage, Will, and Kane Counties.
Mr. Rodriguez is fluent in both Spanish and English.