Oil Dispersants Used in Oil Spills May Cause Health Problems

The National Institutes of Health recently conducted a study entitled the Gulf Long-Term Follow-Up Study, in which it determined workers exposed to oil dispersants during the Deep Water Horizons cleanup are likely to experience respiratory issues and other health problems.

Nearly 33,000 cleanup workers participated in the study between 2011 and 2013. The National Institutes of Health researchers analyzed 28,000 workers for respiratory problems, 29,000 workers for eye irritation, and 28,000 for skin problems. Biological samples were taken, as well as follow up interviews with the participants.

The study found that workers who had direct contact with the dispersant were more likely to experience continual coughing and wheezing; burning in the nasal passages, as well as in the throat and lungs; tightness in the chest; and eye irritation.

The director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Dr. Linda Birnbaum stated “some of them are continuing to not feel well, and we don’t know what factors are contributing to it. The ongoing Gulf Study research is important for shedding light on the potential health impacts associated with an oil spill”.

Additional follow up interviews with study participants is currently on going as of Fall 2017 for those participants who still have symptoms.

Benny Agosto, Jr. is a partner at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner in Houston, Texas. For over 68 years, Abraham Watkins has successfully represented injured people and families who fall victim to catastrophes. Our attorneys have the knowledge, experience and resources necessary to obtain just compensation their clients. If your life has been impacted by health problems related to the use of chemical dispersants, please contact the office of Benny Agosto, Jr. at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner, by letter at 800 Commerce Street, Houston, Texas 77002, or by phone at (713) 222-7211.