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Ethylene Oxide (EtO)

Did you or a loved one develop cancer while living or working near a facility that emits Ethylene Oxide (EtO)?

If so, you may be entitled to compensation from the party responsible.

Why might you or a loved one be entitled to compensation?

image of EtO molecule

EtO Molecule

According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, Ethelene Oxide is a human carcinogen: “Ethylene oxide (EtO) is a colorless gas used to make other chemicals that are used in making a range of products, including antifreeze, textiles, plastics, detergents and adhesives. EtO also is used to sterilize equipment and plastic devices that cannot be sterilized by steam, such as medical equipment.”

 

The EPA determined that long term exposure to EtO may lead to harmful health effects: “EtO is a human carcinogen. It causes cancer in humans,” including:

  • Breast cancer
  • Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
  • Myeloma
  • Lymphocytic leukemia
  • Other blood and lymph cancers
  • Cancers of the prostate, pancreas, kidneys, lung, brain, stomach, ovaries, and bladder

Cancer cell and DNA strand

Other health effects associated with exposure to Ethylene Oxide may include:

  • Miscarriage and reproductive harm
  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Memory loss
  • Impaired hand-eye coordination
  • Cognitive and neurological impairment
  • Eye irritation and damage
  • Nerve damage

According to the EPA: “Scientific evidence in humans indicates that regular exposure to EtO over many years increases the risk of cancers of the white blood cells, including non-Hodgkin lymphoma, myeloma, and lymphocytic leukemia. Studies also show that long-term exposure to EtO increases the risk of breast cancer in women.”

Ethylene Oxide Facilities

The EPA has published lists of facilities that may be emitting unhealthy levels of EtO, exposing people who live nearby to health risks. One list identified the following facilities:

  • Lakewood, Colorado [Terumo BCT Sterilization Service, Inc.]
  • Groveland, Florida [International Sterilization Laboratory]
  • Taunton, Massachusetts [Professional Contract Sterilization, Inc.]
  • Hanover, Maryland [Elite Spice, Inc.]
  • Jessup, Maryland [Elite Spice, Inc.]
  • Salisbury, Maryland [Trinity Sterile, Inc.]
  • Jackson, Missouri [Midwest Sterilization Corp.]
  • Columbus, Nebraska [Becton Dickinson Pharmaceutical Systems]
  • Franklin, New Jersey [Cosmed Group Inc.]
  • Linden, New Jersey [Cosmed Group, Inc.]
  • Ardmore, Oklahoma [LEMCO Ardmore]
  • Erie, Pennsylvania [Cosmed Group LLC]
  • Zelienople, Pennsylvania [American Contract Systems Inc.]
  • Añasco, Puerto Rico [Edwards Lifesciences]
  • Farjado, Puerto Rico [Customed, Inc.]
  • Salinas, Puerto Rico [Steri-Tech, Inc.]
  • Villalba, Puerto Rico [Medtronic PR Operation Co.]
  • New Tazewell, Tennessee [DeRoyal Industries]
  • Memphis, Tennessee [Sterilization Services]
  • Athens, Texas [Steritec, Inc.]
  • Laredo, Texas [Midwest Sterilization Corporation]
  • Sandy, Utah [BD Medical]
  • Henrico, Virginia [Sterilization Services of Virginia]

The EPA published a list of Ethelene Oxide commercial sterilization facilities in the United States on its website. This list includes nearly 100 facilities located in 32 states across the country, as well as in Puerto Rico. Several companies operate EtO facilities in more than one location. For example, the following companies are associated with multiple Ethylene Oxide sterilization facilities on the EPA list:

  • Sterigenics (7 facilities)
  • American Contract Systems (2 facilities)
  • Becton Dickinson (3 facilities)
  • Steris (5 facilities)
  • Medtronic (5 facilities)
  • Jackson Laboratory (3 facilities)
  • St. Jude Medical (2 facilities)
  • Elite Spice (3 facilities)
  • Midwest Sterlization (2 facilities)
  • Cosmed Group (3 facilities)
  • Boston Scientific (3 facilities)
  • 3M (2 facilities)
  • Sterilization Services (2 facilities)
  • Isomedix Operations (3 facilities)

Free Assessment

Finding out if you have a potential claim is free and fast. Please go to this link for our intake form.

Client Intake Form

Prior lawsuits against EtO facilities include:

Sterigenics – A woman filed a lawsuit against the Sterigenics sterilization facility after developing breast cancer from exposure while living nearby in Willowbrook, Illinois. In 2023, a jury awarded her $363 million in compensation. Sterigenics subsequently settled hundreds of ethelene oxide lawsuits for $408 million.
Benton Dickinson and Sterigenics – Victims in Georgia filed a series of lawsuits against Benton Dickinson and Sterigenics in 2020. They claimed their breast cancer or blood cancer diagnoses were due to exposure to EtO emissions from the sterilization plants.

Have you ever lived or worked in the Maywood or Vernon area of Los Angeles?

Your cancer may have been caused by EtO emissions:

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