Benzene is a widely used chemical in the United States. It is both manmade and is also found in natural sources, such as forest fires and volcanoes. It is also found in cigarette smoke, gasoline, and crude oil, and ranks as one of the top chemicals in production volume. It is frequently used in the production of nylon, plastics, resins, synthetic fibers, rubbers, medications, lubricants, pesticides, and detergents.
People can be exposed to benzene in several different ways; a significant source of benzene exposure is tobacco smoke. People may also be exposed to benzene from industrial emissions, gas stations, and car exhausts. This means that some individuals are not only exposed to benzene while on the job if they work in an industrial occupation, but even just being out and about can unknowingly put someone at risk of benzene exposure.
Although people can be exposed to benzene by being outside, higher and more dangerous levels of benzene exposure are typically through indoor air. Products like furniture wax, paints, and glues may contain benzene, and therefore, individuals who are exposed to these types of fumes daily may be most at risk. For example, those who work in industries that produce items that release benzene into the air may be exposed to benzene regularly, which can have long-term health effects.
Benzene exposure can have serious side effects that can show up very quickly and just hours after exposure, or even just minutes after being exposed. Some of the signs of benzene exposure include:
- Stomach irritation
- Heart arrhythmias
In some cases, very high levels of benzene exposure can be fatal. Although many adverse effects of benzene exposure tend to show up quickly, they are not always apparent, and exposure over a prolonged period can have serious long-term health effects. The CDC reports that individuals who are exposed to benzene for at least a year may suffer from dangerous bone marrow effects, which can lead to a decrease in red blood cells and anemia. Long-term benzene exposure can also have a direct impact on the immune system and increase the chances of serious infections, in addition to excessive bleeding. The outcome of benzene exposure is based on several variables, such as the amount of benzene, how the person was exposed to it, and how long they were exposed to it. For example, someone can eat or drink something that contains benzene, or they can inhale benzene. An individual’s prognosis is also typically based on their age, and whether they are in good or poor health.
Do you have a pending lawsuit for an injury due to benzene exposure? If so, you may qualify to receive money now through a lawsuit advance to cover bills and other expenses. At USClaims, we offer an alternative to those waiting on cases to settle; this is a process known as pre-settlement funding, also commonly referred to as a lawsuit advance. Contact USClaims today to learn more and get started on the process.