Camp Lejeune Water Contamination Health Issues

Exposure to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune has been linked to numerous medical issues and illnesses, including various types of cancer, birth defects in children, Parkinson's disease, and more.

Anyone who lived or worked on the base for at least 30 days between August 1953 and December 1987 may now be eligible for compensation from a Camp Lejeune toxic water lawsuit — even if you were diagnosed decades ago.

See if you qualify today by calling (800) 995-1212 or getting a free case review. We're proud to work with Ed Bell, the champion of the Camp Lejeune Justice Act, to help veterans get justice.​​

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2022 Update: List of Camp Lejeune Water Contamination Diseases

Exposure to contaminated water is a serious health risk, particularly when cancer-causing chemicals like those at U.S. ​​Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville, North Carolina are involved.

The contaminated water at Camp Lejeune has been linked to numerous medical issues and diseases that can be very serious.

Health issues and diseases caused by contaminated water at Camp Lejeune may include:

  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease)
  • Aplastic anemia
  • Birth defects
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Dental issues
  • Heart disease
  • Multiple types of cancer
  • Myelodysplastic syndromes
  • Neurobehavioral effects
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Scleroderma

Please note: This list of Camp Lejeune diseases and medical issues is not exhaustive. Many additional health problems may be linked to water contamination at Camp Lejeune.

Thanks to a brand new bill, however, anyone who lived or worked at the base for at least 30 days during the affected years may now be eligible for compensation from a Camp Lejeune toxic water lawsuit. Even cases from decades ago may still qualify.

At Sokolove Law, our Camp Lejeune lawyers may be able to take care of the legal process for you, from finding the evidence to filing your claim — all at no out-of-pocket cost to you or your family.

Learn more about taking legal action by calling (800) 995-1212 or getting a free case review.

Camp Lejeune Water Contamination & Cancer

From August 1953 to December 1987, water at Camp Lejeune was contaminated with at least four toxic chemicals that may cause cancer:

  • Benzene
  • Tetrachloroethylene (also known as ​​perchloroethylene or PCE)
  • Trichloroethylene (TCE)
  • Vinyl chloride (VC)

As a result, anyone who came into contact with the contaminated water for at least 30 days on the base may be at a higher risk of developing multiple types of cancer.

One study found that U.S. Marines who served at Camp Lejeune from 1975 to 1985 had a 10% higher risk of dying from any type of cancer compared to U.S. Marines at Camp Pendleton, a military base that didn’t have contaminated water.

Types of Camp Lejeune water cancer include:

  • Bladder cancer
  • Breast cancer
  • Cervical cancer
  • Esophageal cancer
  • Kidney cancer
  • Leukemia
  • Liver cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Prostate cancer
  • Rectal cancer

Even if you smoked, you may still be eligible to pursue Camp Lejeune compensation by taking legal action.

Sadly, contaminated water at Camp Lejeune didn’t just affect the civilian workers and veterans who served there. Children who lived at Camp Lejeune while the water was contaminated were also found to have higher rates of cancer.

If you were diagnosed with Camp Lejeune water cancer after being exposed to contaminated water, contact Sokolove Law today by calling (800) 995-1212.

Even cases from decades ago may now be eligible for compensation from a Camp Lejeune cancer lawsuit.

It’s Not Too Late for Justice

Even if you or your loved one suffered injuries years ago, you may now be able to take legal action and pursue compensation due to new laws.

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Camp Lejeune Bladder Cancer

Bladder cancer is a common type of cancer that usually forms in the cells lining the bladder, the tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder (known as the ureter), or the tubes that lead urine out of the body (urethra).

U.S. Marines, their families, and civilian employees exposed to PCE or both PCE and TCE — two of the main contaminants in the drinking water at Camp Lejeune — have an increased risk of developing bladder cancer.

Symptoms of Camp Lejeune bladder cancer include:

  • Back pain
  • Difficult or painful urination
  • Frequent urination
  • Very dark or bloody urine

Camp Lejeune Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is a type of cancer that can develop in one or both breasts. Contaminated water at Camp Lejeune has been linked to increased rates of breast cancer in those stationed at the base — particularly cases of male breast cancer.

Exposure to TCE, PCE, and VC — which were all present in the water at Camp Lejeune — has been found to potentially accelerate the onset of male breast cancer.

Symptoms of Camp Lejeune breast cancer include:

  • Discharge from the breast
  • Dry, flaky, red, or thickened skin on the breast
  • Nipple retraction or turning inward
  • Pain in the breast or nipple
  • Skin dimpling (resembling an orange peel in some cases)
  • Swelling (in all or part of the breast), even if no lump is felt
  • Swollen lymph nodes near the collarbone or under the arm

The symptoms listed above are for cases of breast cancer in both men and women.

Camp Lejeune Kidney Cancer

Kidney cancer — also known as renal cancer — is a type of cancer that starts in the kidney. Similarly to bladder cancer, exposure to the chemicals PCE and TCE is associated with a higher risk of kidney cancer and disease.

Both of these cancer-causing chemicals were present in the toxic water at Camp Lejeune, leading many military families and civilian workers to develop kidney issues.

Symptoms of Camp Lejeune kidney cancer include:

  • Bloody urine
  • Exhaustion or fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Low back pain
  • Low red blood cell counts (anemia)
  • Lump on the side or lower back
  • Persistent fever
  • Unintended weight loss

According to one study, U.S. Marines at Camp Lejeune had a 35% higher risk of kidney cancer than those stationed at Camp Pendleton.

Leukemia from Camp Lejeune Water

Leukemia is a type of cancer that affects the blood cells and starts in the bone marrow, where the blood in your body is produced.

Sadly, the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune has been linked to increased rates of leukemia in both adults and children.

Symptoms of leukemia may include:

  • Bleeding gums
  • Bone or joint pain
  • Fatigue
  • Fever or night sweats
  • Frequent infections
  • Nosebleeds
  • Pale skin
  • Purplish or darkened patches of skin
  • Rash or tiny red spots on the skin (petechiae)
  • Shortness of breath
  • Swollen lymph nodes in the groin, neck, stomach, or underarm areas
  • Unexplained weight loss

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Camp Lejeune Liver Cancer

Liver cancer is a type of cancer that forms in the cells of your liver. It’s more common for cancer to spread to the liver than to begin there.

According to one study, U.S. Marines stationed at Camp Lejeune from 1975 to 1985 had a 42% higher risk of liver cancer than Camp Pendleton Marines who had clean water.

Symptoms of liver cancer include:

  • Abdominal swelling
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Muscle weakness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Pain in the upper abdomen
  • Unintended weight loss
  • White, chalky bowel movements
  • Yellow discoloration of the eyes and skin (jaundice)

Multiple Myeloma from Camp Lejeune Water

Multiple myeloma is a type of cancer that develops in a type of white blood cells called plasma cells, which help the body fight infections and fend off germs.

One study found that U.S. Marines at Camp Lejeune between 1975 and 1985 had a 68% higher risk of multiple myeloma than U.S. Marines at Camp Pendleton.

Symptoms of multiple myeloma include:

  • Bone pain, especially in the chest or spine
  • Confusion
  • Constipation
  • Excessive thirst
  • Fatigue
  • Frequent infections
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Numbness or weakness in the legs
  • Unintended weight loss

Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma from Camp Lejeune Water

Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL or sometimes lymphoma) is a form of cancer that develops in a type of white blood cells called lymphocytes, which are part of the body’s immune system. NHL is generally used to describe several types of lymphoma that have similar characteristics.

In one study, U.S. Marines stationed at Camp Lejeune from 1975 to 1985 had a 47% higher risk of NHL than U.S. Marines at Camp Pendleton.

Symptoms of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma include:

  • Abdominal pain or swelling
  • Chest pain
  • Coughing
  • Fatigue
  • Night sweats
  • Swollen lymph nodes in the armpits, groin, or neck
  • Trouble breathing
  • Unintended weight loss

Camp Lejeune Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer is a type of cancer that forms in the prostate. It’s one of the most common types of cancer, according to the Mayo Clinic. In its early stages, prostate cancer may not cause any noticeable symptoms.

Symptoms of advanced prostate cancer include:

  • Blood in the semen and/or urine
  • Bone pain
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Less forceful urine stream
  • Trouble urinating
  • Unintended weight loss

Thanks to a new law, those with prostate cancer related to Camp Lejeune water contamination may qualify for compensation.

Learn more about filing a Camp Lejeune cancer lawsuit now — call (800) 995-1212 today.

Camp Lejeune Water Contamination & Birth Defects

Pregnant women who drank or bathed in the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune were also likely exposed to toxic chemicals. Sadly, this may have exposed their child while still in the womb as well.

Numerous studies have found that children of Camp Lejeune have far higher rates of birth defects or congenital disabilities when compared to children born off the base.

Camp Lejeune birth defects include:

  • Fetal death
  • Low birth weight
  • Major congenital malformations
  • Miscarriage
  • Neural tube defects
  • Oral cleft defects (including blood cancers, cleft lip, spina bifida, and more)

Infants and children who used the toxic water at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987 may also be at increased risk of many different types of cancers.

Thanks to a new law, however, your family may now be able to get justice by taking legal action.

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Camp Lejeune Water Contamination & Heart Disease

Military veterans, civilian workers, and their family members have reported experiencing a variety of heart-related health problems that may be related to exposure to contaminated Camp Lejeune water.

Camp Lejeune water contamination heart effects may include:

  • Congenital heart defect
  • Fast heart rate (tachycardia)
  • Heart failure
  • High blood pressure (hypertension)
  • Irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia)

Additional Camp Lejeune Medical Issues

Aplastic Anemia & Myelodysplastic Syndromes

Aplastic anemia refers to when your bone marrow isn’t able to create enough new blood cells for your body to function as it should.

Similarly, myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) refer to when the blood cells are poorly formed or fail to function properly, usually when something disrupts their development. MDS can develop into acute leukemia.

These rare and serious blood conditions may occur due to exposure to toxic chemicals — like the contaminants in the water at Camp Lejeune — that cause bone marrow damage.

Crohn’s Disease

Crohn’s disease is a type of bowel disease that causes inflammation of the digestive tract. This can lead to abdominal pain, diarrhea, fatigue, weight loss, and more.

Numerous veterans have reported suffering from Crohn’s disease after living or working at Camp Lejeune. Crohn’s disease may also affect children who lived on the base.

Dental Issues From Camp Lejeune Water Contamination

Many civilian workers and U.S. military veterans have reported suffering from tooth-related issues after being exposed to the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune.

Camp Lejeune dental issues may include fracturing or tooth loss. In some cases, the enamel (the outer protective covering of the tooth) may have eroded and required corrective surgery.

Camp Lejeune Neurobehavioral Effects

Neurobehavioral effects refer to how changes to the nervous system, particularly the brain, can affect our emotion, behavior, and learning.

Consuming the toxic water at Camp Lejeune could have negatively impacted someone’s nervous system and caused many different changes to their physical abilities and mental state as a result.

Camp Lejeune neurobehavioral effects may include:

  • Aggression
  • Anxiety
  • Attention difficulties or trouble concentrating
  • Confusion
  • Dementia
  • Depression
  • Difficulty sleeping or insomnia
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Lack of coordination
  • Learning disorders
  • Memory issues
  • Poor motor skills
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Tension
  • Tremors or involuntary movements
  • Weakness

Parkinson’s Disease from Camp Lejeune Water

Parkinson’s disease is a degenerative brain disorder that affects the nervous system and gradually gets worse over time.

While Parkinson’s is characterized by its physical effects, like difficulty talking or walking, it can also cause numerous behavioral changes like depression as well.

Parkinson’s is believed to be caused by a mix of generic and environmental factors, like exposure to the toxic contaminants in the water at Camp Lejeune.

Symptoms of Parkinson’s disease include:

  • Impaired balance and posture
  • Loss of automatic movements (like blinking or smiling)
  • Rigid muscles
  • Slowed movement (bradykinesia)
  • Speech or writing changes
  • Tremors, usually in the limbs

Scleroderma & Camp Lejeune

Scleroderma (or systemic sclerosis) is a potentially fatal autoimmune disease that involves the hardening, inflammation, or thickening of the skin.

This skin tightening can then affect the blood vessels, digestive tract, and internal organs, causing issues that range from high blood pressure to organ failure.

Symptoms of scleroderma include:

  • Difficulty moving
  • Dry, itchy skin
  • Hair loss
  • Hard, thickening, or tight skin
  • Less sweating
  • Muscle weakness
  • Salt-and-pepper-like patches of skin on the back, chest, or scalp
  • Skin color changes
  • Sores or ulcers on fingertips
  • Stiff joints
  • Visible blood vessels

Pursue Justice & Compensation for Camp Lejeune Health Issues

Anyone who lived or worked at Camp Lejeune for at least 30 days between August 1, 1953 and December 31, 1987 may now be eligible for compensation from a Camp Lejeune toxic water lawsuit.

As a nationally known personal injury law firm, Sokolove Law has the resources and reach to get your family the justice and compensation they deserve.

Over the last 40+ years, we’ve secured over $8.7 Billion for thousands of injured clients across the country.

Call (800) 995-1212 or get a free case review today to get started. We’ll fight hard to get you everything you’re entitled to — at no upfront or out-of-pocket costs to you.

Camp Lejeune Water Diseases FAQs

What caused the Camp Lejeune water contamination? 

The water contamination at Camp Lejeune has been linked to on-base activities by the U.S. military and to a privately owned dry cleaning business located nearby.

Toxic chemicals and industrial solvents known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs) seeped into the underground storage tanks before being collected by two water treatment plants on base — Tarawa Terrace and Hadnot Point.

These plants then slowly cycled the contaminated water supplies back into use at some of the barracks, base housing, and other buildings.

Nearly 1 million military service members, their families, and civilian workers may have been exposed to these dangerous chemicals.

What can I do if I was exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune?

Contact Sokolove Law today if you or a loved one was exposed to the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune — even if you were denied justice in the past or diagnosed decades ago.

Those who lived or worked on the base for at least 30 days between August 1953 and December 1987 may now qualify to take legal action and pursue compensation for their exposure.

What Camp Lejeune diseases are associated with water contamination?

A variety of serious health issues and diseases are associated with Camp Lejeune water contamination.

Some of the Camp Lejeune diseases and health issues include:

  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease)
  • Aplastic anemia
  • Birth defects
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Dental issues
  • Heart disease
  • Multiple types of cancer
  • Neurobehavioral effects
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Scleroderma

Anyone who lived or worked at Camp Lejeune for at least 30 days between August 1, 1953 and December 31, 1987 may now be eligible for compensation from a Camp Lejeune water lawsuit.

Even those diagnosed decades ago may now be able to seek justice. Get started now by filling out our contact form.

Is there a link between Camp Lejeune water contamination and prostate cancer?

Potentially, yes. Some studies have found a link between Camp Lejeune water contamination and prostate cancer, especially in U.S. Marines and civilian workers at the base.

Exposure to the cancer-causing chemicals TCE and/or PCE may be linked to prostate cancer.

If you were diagnosed with prostate cancer after living or working at Camp Lejeune, you may be eligible for compensation from a Camp Lejeune cancer lawsuit.

See if you qualify now by calling (800) 995-1212.

What are the neurobehavioral effects of Camp Lejeune water contamination?

Drinking water that’s contaminated with toxic chemicals can potentially disrupt the nervous system and cause a range of different effects in someone’s emotions and behaviors.

Camp Lejeune neurobehavioral effects may include:

  • Aggression
  • Anxiety
  • Attention difficulties or trouble concentrating
  • Confusion
  • Dementia
  • Depression
  • Difficulty sleeping or insomnia
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Lack of coordination
  • Learning disorders
  • Memory issues
  • Poor motor skills
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Tension
  • Tremors or involuntary movements
  • Weakness

What was in the water at Camp Lejeune?

Groundwater at two of the water supply plants on base were found to contain several contaminants that are known to cause cancer.

Contaminants found in Camp Lejeune drinking water included: 

  • Benzene
  • Tetrachloroethylene (also known as ​​perchloroethylene or PCE)
  • Trichloroethylene (TCE)
  • Vinyl chloride (VC)
Author:Sokolove Law Team
Sokolove Law Team

Contributing Authors

The Sokolove Law Content Team is made up of writers, editors, and journalists. We work with case managers and attorneys to keep site information up to date and accurate. Our site has a wealth of resources available for victims of wrongdoing and their families.

Last modified: November 30, 2022

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