My Personal Story of Mesothelioma

In October of 2001, my father-in-law began to notice a pain in his left side armpit area. We took him to the doctor and the initial diagnosis they gave him was “Pleurisy,” an inflammation of the lungs. Despite treatment, the pain in his arm area progressively got worse and a few weeks after that he started to have a shortness of breath. The doctors weren’t sure why his condition was worsening so they ran more tests. Dad was given a chest x-ray which revealed a fluid pocket on one of his lungs. The doctors then scheduled a CT scan with a needle biopsy. The test came back negative and that gave our family a sigh of relief. However, Dad didn’t get any better. The shortness of breath continued and the pain increased as time went on. The doctor’s had no choice but to drain the pocket of fluid on his lung. They also suggested that Dad go to the cancer center and get a surgical biopsy done. In February of 2002, the doctor called and gave us the news; Dad had Mesothelioma.

Dad and the rest of the family’s initial reaction was one of denial. After piecing the puzzle together, we all realized that this was caused by Dad’s lifetime of work in the Mill and his constant exposure to asbestos. The depression set in on Dad and it was all he could do to go through treatment. Because there is no cure for Mesothelioma, the treatment was just a measure to try and prolong his life as long as possible. Dad was a fighter and he made up his mind to go to battle even though he knew he was facing a death sentence. Radiation and Chemotherapy started a week later.

To everyone’s surprise, Dad started to feel better. For a period of 6 months, Dad was back to his old self. Unfortunately, the Mesothelioma began to win the battle. It took over his body and Dad started feeling sick. He was depressed mostly because his freedom had been taken away and he felt like he was alone.

My Dad was a fighter; a man amongst men. Mesothelioma took all of that from him. He started losing weight very quickly. He had dark circles under his eyes, Jaundice had set in. He was getting weaker by the day. Night sweats were unavoidable and the disease completely ravaged his body.

After yet another visit to the doctor, we were advised that we could not leave him alone because of his state of mind. He was depressed and fearful. Somebody was constantly by his side trying to give him comfort. Mesothelioma took its toll on all of us, too.

Down to a mere 130 pounds, Dad was coughing up blood and the pain was getting worse, penetrating his bones. At this point he couldn’t walk and was confined to a wheelchair. A month or so later, Dad was bed ridden and Hospice Care started. Despite enormous doses of pain medication, he couldn’t be moved because it hurt too much. He was hallucinating and having seizures. Dad passed away 2 days later in February of 2004.

I experienced firsthand the wrath of Mesothelioma. It takes over quickly with no remorse or hope. It is this firsthand experience as Principal of the Firm that drives the commitment and passion for every member of the Firm to treat a client as part of their own family. As a result, the attorneys at the Mesothelioma Law Center will fight to recover compensation for innocent victims ravaged by this disease. We are here for you.

— Michael Throneberry, Attorney-at-Law

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