Mesothelioma Treatment: What are the Options?
Mesothelioma is a rare cancer of the thin membranes that line the lungs, the abdominal cavity, or the heart. Approximately 90% of mesothelioma cases are linked to asbestos exposure. The disease is an aggressive and deadly form of cancer that is not only difficult to diagnose but difficult to treat as well. Although a cure for this deadly disease is not possible for many of its victims, there are mesothelioma treatments available.
Mesothelioma is mostly dangerous because it can even affect people who have experienced low levels of asbestos exposure, whether knowingly or without their knowledge. Most people who develop mesothelioma have worked in industries or occupations where they were exposed to asbestos, either through inhaling asbestos particles or through exposure to asbestos dust and fibers in other ways.
Many of the symptoms are also slow and progressive, showing up 20 years or more after the first exposure. Most cases of mesothelioma are not typically diagnosed for as long as 30 years or more after initial exposure. The treatment for mesothelioma is constantly improving, increasing the probability of a better prognosis for many people diagnosed with the disease. In addition to the standard treatment methods, a number of emerging treatments currently in clinical trials are showing promising results.
For mesotheliomas that can be treated with surgery, chemo may be given before surgery to try to shrink the cancer and lower the risk of spread. This is called “neoadjuvant therapy”. Chemo can also be given after surgery to try to kill any cancer cells that were left behind. This type of treatment, called “adjuvant therapy”, may help delay or prevent the cancer growing back.
In combination with surgery and chemotherapy, radiation can help kill cancer cells. Radiation’s increased ability to target these cells in patients can relieve pain and improve life expectancy, depending on the stage of cancer.
One of the treatments that is still in its clinical phase is immunotherapy, a type of treatment that uses the body’s own immune system to help fight against diseases such as mesothelioma. The immune system is multifaceted, but recognizing how it works on a basic level might help in the understanding of how immunotherapy can be used to treat such illnesses as mesothelioma.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Mesothelioma as a result of asbestos exposure, you may be entitled to compensation. The Madeksho Law Firm PLLC has over 40 years experience litigating such cases.