Sterigenics, a global industrial sterilization company, plans to appeal the award, which would represent one of the largest settlement payouts in the history of the United States. The Plaintiff Susan Kamuda, who developed breast cancer after living near a Sterigenics plant, was awarded approximately $17 million more than she had requested in their closing arguments. The court-ordered $363 million payout represents the largest jury award for a single plaintiff in the history of the state of Illinois.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the International Agency for Research on Cancer have classified ethylene oxide as a carcinogen. People who have ever lived or worked in or close to industrial or chemical facilities may have been exposed to the harmful substance.
Individuals exposed to ethylene oxide in sufficient quantities can have their cells and DNA damaged by the chemical, possibly leading to adverse health consequences. Most people are not exposed to enough of the chemical to cause significant health problems. Still, those who live or work close to an emissions source or who work with ethylene oxide may be more prone to developing cancer and other diseases. Studies have indicated that breathing in high quantities of ethylene oxide over multiple years raises the risk of blood problems, blood malignancies and breast cancer in humans. Exposure to the drug has also caused tumours to grow in the brain, lungs, uterus, connective tissue and mammary glands of animals subjected to the chemical.
If you or someone you know may have been exposed to ethylene oxide and has developed adverse health problems, please contact Slater Vecchio LLP at https://www.slatervecchio.com/contact/.