Railroad Cancer Victims Could Have Hope in Targeted Radiosurgery

A retired Norfolk Southern worker I am representing as he pursues a FELA claim against the railroad for exposing him to dangerous chemicals in trains and rail yards has had his life improved and, hopefully, extended, by a newer type of cancer treatment. The technique allowed doctors to easily target and destroy even small tumors in places where traditional surgery or radiation would have subjected the man to unacceptable risks for complications and side effects.

To learn more about asbestos and mesothelioma cancer affecting railroad workers, please read the following articles:

Delivered using machines named CyberKnife or Gamma Knife, the procedure is called stereostatic radiosurgery. It involves using smaller radiation doses aimed specifically at tumors and lesions. The option is currently or will soon be available in the area where I have my main Virginia (VA) personal injury law offices at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, the Riverside & University of Virginia Radiosurgery Center, Bon Secours DePaul Medical Center and Sentara Williamsburg Regional Medical Center. A searchable list of other hospitals in West Virginia (WV), North Carolina (NC), Tennessee (TN) and elsewhere equipped with CyberKnife machines is here.

The benefits of stereostatic radiosurgery include

  • Being able to treat tumors as small as 5 millimeters;
  • Treating even the toughest forms of brain, lung, pancreatic and liver cancers;
  • Causing few to no adverse effects;
  • Lower costs;
  • Fewer total radiation sessions; and ability to combine with chemotherapy or regular types of radiotherapy without adding problems.

I am not a doctor, but that list is impressive. I also I know my railroad employee client has done extremely well on stereostatic radiosurgery. Everyone responds to each treatment differently. Still, as more hospitals install CyberKnife and Gamma Knife, it seems likely that anyone who developed cancer after working for NS, Atrak, CSX or any other rail company should have hope for living longer, fuller lives despite their occupational illness.

Richard N. Shapiro
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Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Lawyer Serving Va Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake & all of Virginia
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