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Home / WTC Updates / Personal Injury Attorney Michael Barasch Concerned About Increase in Cancer and Pulmonary Diseases among Post-9/11 FDNY Firefighters

Personal Injury Attorney Michael Barasch Concerned About Increase in Cancer and Pulmonary Diseases among Post-9/11 FDNY Firefighters

Personal injury attorney Michael Barasch of Barasch McGarry Salzman & Penson expresses his concern about the post-9/11 rise in cancer rates and pulmonary diseases among New York City firefighters

New York attorney Michael Barasch is expressing his concern about two recent reports, one from the New York City Fire Department’s chief medical officer and one from Mt. Sinai Hospital.  The reports confirm a rise in cancer and pulmonary diseases among the firefighters and other rescue workers who worked at Ground Zero.

According to Dr. David Prezant, the FDNY’s chief medical officer, firefighters who assisted in the search for victims at the World Trade Center site are getting cancer at a higher rate than firefighters before 9/11. He has cited unusual rises in three blood cancers — leukemia, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and multiple myeloma — as well as esophageal, prostate and thyroid cancers. A recent Mt. Sinai clinical study confirmed an increased incidence of chronic pulmonary inflammation, including an alarming three-fold increase in sarcoidosis.

Both studies are expected to be published around the 10th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 tragedy.

Although city officials currently state there is no scientific proof of a relationship between Ground Zero pollutants and rescue personnel illnesses and death, Prezant’s report may be the first to officially document that link.

About Michael Barasch

A longtime advocate of New York City firefighters and rescue personnel, Mr. Barasch’s New York City accident law firm represented the late James Zadroga, an NYPD officer and 9/11 first responder, as well as over 1,000 other rescue workers before the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF).  The Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act will reopen the VCF.  It is groundbreaking legislation intended to provide those suffering from injuries or illnesses related to exposure from the toxic World Trade Center dust and debris with compensation and health care.

“I have been fighting for the rights of injured New York City firefighters for 30 years,” Mr. Barasch stated. “The reports from this study confirm what most experts have feared.  They are cause for concern. I intend to continue fighting for the health and safety of our city’s firefighters, especially those affected by the events of 9/11.”

About the firm

The NY injury attorneys of Barasch McGarry Salzman & Penson, one of New York’s most prominent firms, concentrate in the areas of personal injury, wrongful death, medical malpractice, and firefighter rights. The firm enjoys an outstanding reputation with people of every background, ethnic group, and profession in New York. Their accident lawyers represent seriously injured victims from all types of accidents.

Their areas of practice include:

  • Automobile accidents
  • Airplane accidents
  • Railroad accidents
  • Construction accidents
  • Slip and falls
  • Products liability
  • Firefighter law
  • Medical malpractice

Barasch McGarry Salzman & Penson is especially proud of the awards that they have obtained on behalf of thousands of New York City firefighters who sustained injuries in the line of duty. They have recovered over $500 million on behalf of rescue workers from the WTC Victims Compensation Fund (VCF).

Founded in 1994, the lawyers at Barasch McGarry Salzman & Penson have more than 100 years of combined experience. For more information about the firm, please visit or call (212) 385-8000.


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