The chance of recovery for a person with mesothelioma
depends on several factors, including:
- Size of the cancer
- Location of the cancer
- Spread of the cancer throughout the body
- Patients general health
- Response to treatment
- Appearance of the cells under a microscope
- Age of the patient
Standard treatment options include surgery, radiation
therapy, and chemotherapy. Sometimes, these treatments
Surgery - may be aggressive surgery [long-term control]
and palliative procedures [relief of symptoms].
Aggressive surgery removes part of
the lining of the chest or abdomen and some of the tissue
around it. For pleural mesothelioma, part of the lung
may be removed [pneumonectomy]. Sometimes part of the
diaphragm, the muscle below the lungs, is also removed.
This surgery is highly complicated and carries a high
risk of fatality within a month. Extra pleural pneumonectomy
is therefore performed only on younger patients who
are in good health and can tolerate the surgery.
Palliative procedures are performed
when the cancer is in its advanced form and are intended
to allay and/or control the symptoms of mesothelioma
rather than cure them. Pleurectomy (decortications)
is the surgical removal of the pleura. This reduces
the pain caused by the tumor mass and may also prevent
fluid collection that causes breathlessness. For peritoneal
mesothelioma, surgery aims to palliate the symptoms,
such as ascites, because complete surgical removal of
the entire tumor is not generally possible.
Radiotherapy uses high-energy rays to kill cancer cells
and shrink tumors. Radiation therapy affects the cancer
cells only in the treated area. Radiotherapy may be
external from a machine or internal by implanting radioactive
materials into the area where the cancer cells are found.
Chemotherapy use of intravenous anticancer drugs to
kill cancer cells throughout the body. Doctors are also
studying the effectiveness of putting chemotherapy directly
into the chest or abdomen [intracavitary chemotherapy].
Removal of Fluid
This is done to relieve symptoms and control pain,
a needle or a thin tube to drain fluid is used to drain
fluid built up in the chest [thoracentesis]or abdomen
[paracentesis]. Drugs may be also be given through a
tube in the chest to prevent more fluid from accumulating.
Arthritis Drugs have shown promising effects for Mesothelioma
patients. The FDA has approved a combination of Alimta-Cisplatin
for treatment of asbestos-related cancer. Some of the
medicines approved by the FDA are:
- Adriamycin (doxorubicin), which is the most effective
Description of Mesothelioma
Symptoms of Mesothelioma