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Trichloroethylene exposure at Camp Lejeune, associated with a higher kidney cancer risk

One of the highly toxic solvents present in the drinking water at Camp Lejeune during the last century was trichloroethylene. At the Hadnot Point water plant, the level eclipsed the safe exposure limit by 280 times, greatly endangering the health of service members, their families, and civilians. While the main source of trichloroethylene at the military base was the nearby dry-cleaning firm ABC One-Hour Cleaners, which improperly disposed of this solvent, the chemical was also used to clean up the metal components of weapons and equipment.

Trichloroethylene exposure can result in numerous awful diseases, including kidney cancer. According to a 2014 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, veterans and family members who spent time at Camp Lejeune have a 35% higher risk of developing this disease. Once inside the body, trichloroethylene may cause renal toxicity if present in large amounts, which is a risk factor for cancer. Intermediate and high trichloroethylene exposure has a greater average mortality rate for kidney cancer, according to a study from Anticancer Research.

A significant dose-response relationship was observed between trichloroethylene exposure and kidney cancer mortality in women. Following adjustment for potential confounders in the multivariate analyses, the researchers observed the risk of kidney cancer mortality to be significantly associated with intermediate and high trichloroethylene release in men and with high trichloroethylene release in women. The results suggest that exposure to higher trichloroethylene releases may increase the risk of mortality from kidney cancer, an aspect of the trichloroethylene-cancer association not highlighted before.

Benzene exposure, another risk factor for kidney cancer in Camp Lejeune veterans and family members

Benzene is another chemical that was present in the drinking water at Camp Lejeune, and it also has a strong association with kidney cancer. A study from Occupational Medicine revealed that kidney cancer risk became higher with the duration of exposure to benzene and that men were significantly more likely to develop the disease as a consequence of benzene exposure. Very few women were exposed to benzene in this study, so further research is needed to clarify the association between exposure to the chemical and kidney cancer in females.

Kidney cancer occurs when cells acquire a mutation in their DNA and start growing and duplicating fast. Renal cell carcinoma is the most common kidney cancer type, accounting for roughly 90% of all cases. Some of the symptoms of kidney cancer Camp Lejeune veterans and family members should be on the lookout for since they have a higher risk of developing it are the following:

  • pain between the ribs and waist
  • blood in the urine
  • a high temperature that does not go away
  • swelling of the ankles and legs
  • feeling tired or having no energy
  • loss of appetite or losing weight without trying
  • a lump or swelling in the back
  • sweating a lot, including at night

In a study analyzing kidney cancer and solvents, the National Center for Biotechnology Information found that people with a history of benzene exposure via skin contact and inhalation of solvents were at a significantly elevated risk for kidney cancer. Furthermore, benzene exposure has been connected to a rare form of kidney cancer in two studies, one involving tank truck drivers and the other having as participants seamen on tanker vessels, both carrying benzene-laden chemicals. Benzene targets the liver, kidney, lung, heart, and brain and can cause DNA strand breaks and chromosomal damage.

Are you a Camp Lejeune Marine or a family member of one who struggles with kidney cancer as a result of having drunk toxic water at the military base between 1953 and 1987? If so, we encourage you to contact our team of professionals, who will gladly help you find out whether you are eligible to file a claim and obtain financial compensation for your unjust suffering. Because we understand how overwhelming having kidney cancer can be, we will strive to make the process as simple as possible so that it will require minimal involvement from you.

Atraxia Law can efficiently help you file your Camp Lejeune kidney cancer claim

With over 35 years of experience in reviewing toxic exposure claims, our expert team has the necessary knowledge and resources to assist you in filing your Camp Lejeune water contamination claim for kidney cancer. The only documents we will need to assess your case are your military records or evidence of your stay at the military base and your medical records. Eligible veterans and family members will be put in touch with a top-notch attorney.