Veterans, family members, and contractors exposed to toxic substances in the water at Camp Lejeune Marine Corp Base in North Carolina between 1953 and 1987 have suffered all types of common health conditions and illnesses. Victims are entitled to compensation under the Camp Lejeune Justice Act. If you or a family member has a health condition caused by Camp Lejeune water contamination, turn to Wool Trial Law.
Our firm is experienced in handling mass torts and is committed to helping unsuspecting service members and their families. Once you become our client, we will fight to help you find justice and obtain the maximum compensation you deserve. Contact our office today to get started with a dedicated Camp Lejeune injury attorney.
What Caused the Camp Lejeune Water Contamination and What Are Common Health Conditions?
The water at Camp Lejeune was contaminated by dangerous chemicals: perchloroethylene (PCE), trichloroethylene (TCE), benzene, chloroform, and vinyl chloride. Spills or leaks from dry cleaning businesses, underground storage tanks, waste disposal sites, and other sources led to the contamination.
Volatile organic compounds, recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency as known carcinogens, were found in the water serving the base, such as industrial solvents, degreasers, and other hazardous chemicals. People living and working at the Marine Corp Base suffered toxic exposure by drinking, cooking, and bathing water absorbed through the skin, ingestion, and inhalation.
Camp Lejeune Common Health Conditions
A variety of cancers and other health conditions have been linked to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune, including:
Individuals exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune may have an increased risk of bladder cancer, a disorder in which cancer cells develop in the bladder’s tissues. Symptoms to watch for include:
- Blood in the urine
- Pain or burning sensation during urination
- Frequent urination
- Lower back pain on one side of the body
There is no definitive cure for bladder cancer; however, early detection and treatment improve the chances of recovery.
Breast cancer is the second most common cancer linked to Camp Lejeune water contamination. Studies have found that women and men exposed to the contaminated water at the base have a much higher risk of developing breast cancer than those who were not. The contaminants may have disrupted the normal function of the breasts or damaged DNA, leading to the development of cancer. Individuals who served or lived at Camp Lejeune should be aware of several symptoms of breast cancer, such as:
- A lump in the breast or underarm
- Thickening or swelling of part of the breast
- Any change in the size or shape of the breasts
- Any change in the texture of the skin on the breasts
- Pain in any area of the breast
- Discharge from the nipple, including blood
If you believe you developed breast cancer after living or working at the base, contact the team at Wool Trial Law to learn about your rights.
This form of cancer begins in the esophagus – the hollow, muscular tube that transports food and liquids from your mouth to your stomach. Contaminated water at Camp Lejeune may have
damaged the DNA of the cells in the esophagus, increasing the risk of cancer. Symptoms of esophageal cancer include difficulty swallowing, weight loss, and pain in the throat or back.
The kidneys are vital organs that filter waste from the blood and remove it from the body. Cancer can form in the cells of the kidney and spread (metastasize) to other parts of the body. Exposure to chemicals such as TCE and benzene is associated with an increased risk of kidney cancer.
- Blood in the urine
- Pain in the side
- A mass in the abdomen
Individuals exposed to contaminated water for long periods have the highest risk of kidney cancer.
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), a division of the CDC, found that men exposed to TCE and benzene in the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune were twice as likely to develop liver cancer. Symptoms associated with liver cancer include weight loss, fatigue, pain in the abdomen, and jaundice.
Those who drank the contaminated water at the base are at a higher risk of developing non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a type of cancer that starts in lymph nodes or other lymph tissue, which are part of the body’s immune system. Symptoms include:
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Weight loss
Early detection of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma allows for more treatment options.
Neurobehavioral Effects as Health Conditions from Camp Lejeune
The term “neurobehavioral effects” refers to conditions related to the relationship between the nervous system and behaviors. Water contaminated with TCE at the base has been linked to an increased risk of neurological diseases, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease. Symptoms of neurobehavioral effects include:
- Lack of coordination
- Sensory disturbances
- Difficulty concentrating
- Motor function deficits
If you believe you were affected by Camp LeJeune’s contaminated water, you may be entitled to substantial compensation.
Exposure to chemicals such as TCE and benzene at Camp Lejeune increases the risk of aplastic anemia – a condition in which the body does not produce enough new blood cells. Symptoms include:
- Shortness of breath
The treatment for aplastic anemia is a bone marrow transplant.
Individuals exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune are at an increased risk of developing renal toxicity: damage to the kidneys that can lead to kidney failure. Symptoms of renal toxicity include frequent urination, blood in the urine, swelling in the feet, ankles, or legs, nausea, and weakness. It is crucial to seek medical attention as soon as possible to prevent kidney damage.
A common health condition associated with Camp Lejeune water contamination is hepatic steatosis or fatty liver disease, which occurs when fat accumulates in the liver cells. Symptoms include fatigue, weight loss, and pain in the upper right abdomen. Fatty liver disease can lead to life-threatening conditions, including cirrhosis or liver cancer.
Other Camp Lejeune Health Conditions or Illnesses
Contaminated water at Camp Lejeune Marine Corp Base is associated with other health conditions, including:
- Adult leukemia
- Multiple myeloma
- Ovarian cancer
- Prostate cancer
- Rectal cancer
- Infertility in women
Exposure to PCE and TCE is also harmful to unborn babies, resulting in deformities and life-threatening medical conditions, such as:
- Eye defects
- Low birth weight
- Neural tube defect
- Oral cleft defect
- Neurobehavioral performance deficit
- Fetal death
Our mass tort attorneys are here to help victims of toxic exposure at Camp Lejeune obtain just compensation.
Contact Our Dedicated Camp Lejeune Injury Attorney Today
At Wool Trial Law, we are determined to hold the U.S. Navy and the federal government accountable for failing to protect you from toxic exposure at Camp Lejeune. Contact us now so we can start working on your claim.