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Can Toxic Chemicals From Industrial Plants Cause Autoimmune Diseases?

 Posted on August 17, 2022 in Personal Injury

Pittsburgh personal injury lawyerThere are numerous steel mills, factories, and other industrial plants in the area surrounding Pittsburgh. These plants work with a variety of dangerous chemicals. Unfortunately, this means that toxic chemical exposure may affect people, including workers who handle these chemicals or people in the surrounding communities who absorb harmful substances that are in the air, soil, or water supply. Autoimmune diseases are some of the most serious conditions that can be caused by toxic chemicals, and those who have suffered harm due to harmful chemicals in the environment may be able to take legal action to recover compensation.

What Are Autoimmune Diseases?

Autoimmune diseases are a type of chronic illness in which the body’s immune system attacks healthy cells, tissues, and organs. There are multiple different types of autoimmune diseases, and some conditions that have been linked to the toxic chemicals used in industrial plants include:

  • Thyroid disorders - When the immune system attacks the thyroid gland, this can cause multiple different types of health issues. Graves' disease occurs when the thyroid gland is stimulated into releasing excess hormones into the bloodstream, and Hashimoto's thyroiditis impairs the function of the thyroid gland, resulting in low levels of thyroid hormone. These conditions may be caused by exposure to heavy metals, such as lead, mercury, or arsenic.

  • Rheumatoid arthritis - When the immune system attacks tissues in the joints, this can cause inflammation, swelling, and pain. This condition has been linked to exposure to toxic chemicals such as dioxin and benzene.

  • Lupus - This autoimmune disease may cause antibodies to affect a variety of bodily tissues, including the lungs, kidneys, and nervous system. It can lead to a wide range of symptoms, including fatigue, joint pain, and rashes. Lupus has been associated with exposure to silica dust, industrial solvents, and pesticides.

  • Multiple sclerosis - This condition is caused when the immune system attacks the protective sheath that covers nerve fibers. This can result in a wide range of symptoms, including muscle weakness, numbness, and problems with balance and coordination. Multiple sclerosis has been linked to exposure to toxic chemicals such as benzene, dioxin, and organic solvents, as well as paint and varnish.

  • Type 1 diabetes - This autoimmune disease results when the body attacks and destroys insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. This can lead to a wide range of symptoms, including increased thirst, fatigue, and weight loss. Type 1 diabetes has been linked to exposure to toxic chemicals such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polyfluorinated substances (PFAS), dioxin, dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), arsenic, mercury, and cadmium.

Contact Our Allegheny County Toxic Chemical Injury Lawyers

If you or a member of your family have been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease after working at an industrial plant, or if you have experienced one of these conditions after living near a facility that may have released toxic chemicals into the environment, Colianni & Leonard LLC can help you determine your legal options. We will advise you on the steps you can take to show that your health issues were caused by exposure to harmful substances, and we will fight to ensure that you will be fully compensated for your injuries and damages. Contact our Pittsburgh toxic chemical exposure attorneys at 412-680-7877 for a free consultation.


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