Goldberg, Persky and White, P.C. Client now has Myelodysplastic Syndrome as a Result of Benzene Exposure

Goldberg, Persky and White, P.C. Client now has Myelodysplastic Syndrome as a Result of Benzene Exposure

Goldberg, Persky and White, P.C. is representing a client who now has Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS), alleging that it was caused by benzene exposure while working with CRC Industries’ products during his career at Dupont Washington Works. Benzene is a carcinogenic volatile organic compound that causes different blood cancers and disorders including acute myelogenous leukemia. Dupont Washington Works, located in Washington, West Virginia, is the birthplace of two famous carcinogenic materials, Teflon and C8. When testing refrigerants in a lab, a white waxy residue was found, which ended up being an inert fluorocarbon called Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE). It was later patented and trademarked as Teflon. The other chemical, called Perfluorooctanoic (PFOA) acid or C8, was created, and its nonstick and stain resistant properties made it very useful in food wrappers, pizza boxes, and waterproof clothing. DuPont Washington Works polluted the surrounding area with the chemical and later gave people cancer.

CRC Industries is a company that deals with specialty chemicals for the automotive, heavy truck, industrial, electrical, food and beverage, oil and gas, marine, hardware, and aviation industries. There are many different products and chemicals within those products that the company creates including cleaners, degreasers, lubricants, penetrants, corrosion inhibitors, additives, grease, gear oil, sealants, and paint. With so many different chemicals and products, it would have been very easy for workers to be exposed to benzene. Another defendant in the suit is Safety Kleen Systems. They create different solutions for cleaning parts and disposing of oil. With their service, they collect and recycle used solvents from companies and provide new solvents to clients.

Myelodysplastic Syndrome causes people to have poorly formed blood cells or to have cells that do not work properly, resulting from bone marrow damage. In a healthy person, the bone marrow creates new immature blood cells that mature over time, but with MDS the process does not happen correctly. Instead, blood cells die in the bone marrow or as soon as they enter the blood stream. This is problematic, and does not let the blood do its job. There are also many different ways the blood cells can be affected. Certain blood cells can be low while others may be high or unaffected. The different types of MDS are below.

Myelodysplastic Syndrome Types

Myelodysplastic Syndrome with Unilineage Dysplasia-One blood cell type, either red, white, or platelets, is low in numbers and appears abnormal under the microscope.

Myelodysplastic Syndrome with Multilineage Dysplasia– Two or three blood cell types are abnormal.

Myelodysplastic Syndrome with Ring Sideroblasts– Patients have a low number of one or more red blood cell types, and existing red blood cells in the bone marrow contain a ring of excess iron (ring sideroblasts).

Myelodysplastic Syndrome Associated with Isolated del Chromosome Abnormality– Low numbers of red blood cells and cells have a specific mutation in their DNA

Myelodysplastic Syndrome with excess blasts- Types I and II– Any of the three types of blood cells (red, white, platelets) might be low and appear abnormal under a microscope. Very immature blood cells (blasts) are found in the bone marrow

Myelodysplastic Syndrome, Unclassifiable– Reduced numbers of three types of mature blood cells and white blood cells or platelets look abnormal under a microscope

Sources:
“About Us” Safety Kleen [Link]
“CRC Industries, Inc. Celebrates 60 Years” CRC Industries October 12, 2018). [Link]
Kyla Asbury, “Man alleges benzene exposure from CRC Industries products caused cancer” West Virginia Record (August 12, 2019). [Link]
“Myelodysplastic syndromes” Mayo Clinic  (October 27, 2017). [Link]
Sharon Kelly, “DuPont’s deadly deceit: The decades-long cover-up behind the ‘world’s most slippery material’” Salon (January 4, 2016). [Link]
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