Remember, you did not have to be present on 9/11 and you did not have to be a First Responder to be eligible. The benefits of the Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) and the World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP) are also available to office workers, construction and other trades, residents, teachers, students and others.
Anyone affected by the toxic air created by the events of 9/11, and not classified as a First Responder, even if your exposure was months later, is classified as a Survivor.
At Cannata, Hendele & Cannata, LLP, we are committed to raising awareness about the health risks faced by individuals who were present in lower Manhattan during and after the events of September 11, 2001. Among the most concerning health issues are 9/11-related cancers, which continue to affect survivors, first responders, and others exposed to Ground Zero toxins. In this blog, we will discuss the impact of these cancers and how to recognize their signs and symptoms.
Understanding 9/11-Related Cancers
Almost every cancer is now included for coverage. The toxins released during the collapse of the World Trade Center towers and subsequent cleanup efforts exposed thousands of individuals to hazardous substances. Over the years, a significant number of those exposed have developed various types of cancers linked to their exposure. These cancers are now recognized as 9/11-related conditions, and those affected may be eligible for compensation and healthcare through the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) and the World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP).
Recognizing the Signs and Symptoms
It is crucial to recognize the signs and symptoms of 9/11-related cancers, as early detection and treatment can significantly impact outcomes. While the latency (time prior to the diagnosis of the cancer) period for these cancers can be lengthy, individuals who were present in the exposure zone should remain vigilant about their health. Medical guidance is always essential in diagnosing and treating cancer. Consult with a physician if you are having medical issues. Common 9/11-related cancers and some of their symptoms may include:
Skin Cancer: Keep an eye out for changes in the skin, such as new moles or growths, changes in color, size, or shape of existing moles, or sores that do not heal.
Respiratory Cancers: Symptoms may include chronic cough, wheezing, chest pain, shortness of breath, or recurrent respiratory infections.
Digestive System Cancers: Look for symptoms like persistent indigestion, difficulty swallowing, abdominal pain, unexplained weight loss, or changes in bowel habits.
Thyroid Cancer: Pay attention to changes in the neck, such as swelling or lumps, hoarseness, difficulty swallowing, or persistent cough.
Lung Cancer: Symptoms may include a persistent cough, coughing up blood, chest pain, unexplained weight loss, or recurrent respiratory infections.
Breast Cancer: Regular breast self-exams and mammograms are essential for early detection. Look for changes in the breast tissue, such as lumps or nipple discharge.
Leukemia and Lymphoma: Be vigilant for symptoms like unexplained fatigue, swollen lymph nodes, frequent infections, easy bruising, or nosebleeds.
Prostate Cancer: Men should have regular prostate exams and be aware of urinary symptoms like frequent urination, difficulty starting or stopping urination, or blood in the urine.
Seeking Prompt Medical Attention
Symptoms of different cancers may be different for each individual. Always consult with your physican if you are concerned about a health issue to discuss potential problems, obtain medical diagnosis and treatment. If you or a loved one experiences any signs or symptoms of any illness, it is essential to seek prompt medical attention. Additionally, it's crucial to inform your healthcare provider about your 9/11 exposure, as this information can guide diagnostic and treatment decisions.
Accessing Support and Compensation
Individuals diagnosed with 9/11-related cancers may be eligible for compensation and healthcare through the VCF and WTCHP. Our team at Cannata, Hendele & Cannata, LLP, is here to help you navigate the claims process for both the VCF and the WTCHP- gather necessary documentation, and advocate for your rights. We understand the physical, emotional, and financial toll that cancer can take, and we are dedicated to assisting you in accessing the support you deserve.
If you have questions or require legal guidance regarding 9/11-related cancers and compensation, please do not hesitate to reach out to us. Your health and well-being are our top priorities, and we are here to support you every step of the way.