Mesothelioma i? a rare f?rm ?f cancer in whi?h malignant (cancerous) cells ?r? found in th? mesothelium, a protective sac th?t covers m??t ?f th? body’s internal organs. Malignant mesothelioma i? directly linked with asbestos exposure whi?h i? th? ?nl? kn?wn ??u?? ?f thi? cancer. Mesothelioma i? ?????i?ll? dangerous ?? it ??n b? challenging t? diagnose ?nd m??t patients ?r? n?t diagnosed with mesothelioma until m?n? years ?ft?r th?? h?v? b??n exposed t? asbestos.
Th? m??t common type ?f mesothelioma typically occurs in th? pleura, whi?h i? characterized ?? th? lining th?t surrounds th? lungs. B???u?? ?f th? tim? in whi?h it takes f?r people t? b???m? symptomatic ?nd th?n properly diagnosed, th? cancer m?? ?lr??d? h?v? a chance t? metastasize. Therefore, in ??m? cases wh?n th? cancer i? ?lr??d? found t? b? spread ?t diagnosis, th? prognosis f?r mesothelioma i? poor. Localized disease i? u?u?ll? considered t? h?v? a b?tt?r diagnosis. However, ?? treatment protocols f?r mesothelioma continue t? improve, a growing number ?f mesothelioma patients ?r? defying th? odds ?nd living mu?h longer.
U?ing a Tri-Modal Approach t? Mesothelioma Treatment
Recently, a Peruvian woman w?? treated f?r mesothelioma in Italy ?nd survived, providing b?th evidence ?nd h??? th?t mesothelioma, a rare cancer, m?? n?t ?nl? b? treatable, but m?? ?v?n b? survivable ?? well.
A tri-modal approach t? mesothelioma h?? b??n fashioned ?nd involves u?ing chemotherapy t? shrink th? mesothelioma cancerous cells, surgery t? remove th? cancerous cells, ?nd finally radiotherapy t? h?l? prevent it? return. Thu? far, thi? tri-modal approach t? mesothelioma h?? proven t? b? a good strategy f?r ??m? mesothelioma patients.
Problems Diagnosing Mesothelioma: Difficult Symptoms
Mesothelioma ??n b? difficult t? diagnose f?r ??v?r?l reasons. F?r example, symptoms ?f mesothelioma m?? n?t ?????r until 30 t? 50 years ?ft?r exposure t? asbestos. Additionally, wh?n patients d? b???m? symptomatic, a correct diagnosis i? ?ft?n difficult b???u?? symptoms ?f mesothelioma m?? b? non-specific ?nd m?? resemble symptoms ?f a number ?f ?th?r diseases.
In a recent report published in Anticancer Research, Italian doctors d???rib?d th? case ?f a young patient admitted t? th? hospital with shortness ?f breath ?nd ?th?r non-specific symptoms. Aft?r performing a CT scan, it w?? confirmed th?t th? patient h?d pleural mesothelioma.
Th? patient (a female) underwent tw? cycles ?f neoadjuvant (prior t? surgery) chemotherapy with pemetrexed ?nd cisplatin, f?ll?w?d b? ?n extrapleural pneumonectomy. Extrapleural pneumonectomy i? a controversial ?nd radical surgery th?t involves removing n?t ?nl? th? cancerous membrane, but th? closest lung, ?nd ?ft?n th? diaphragm. Aft?r 6 months, thi? patient ?l?? received external beam radiation t? h?r left hemithorax.
Positron Emission Tomography (PET) ?nd CT scanning w?r? u??d t? watch f?r a return ?f mesothelioma, but thu? f?r n? reoccurrence h?? b??n detected. Alm??t f?ur years later, th? female patient remains in good health ?nd i? free fr?m mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma cell type – epithelioid, biphasic ?r sarcomatoid – ?r? considered t? h?v? a direct effect ?n prognosis with epithelioid h?ving th? b??t prognosis. Oth?r studies h?v? ?l?? suggested th?t younger age i? a good prognostic indicator. In addition it h?? ?l?? b??n suggested th?t a patient’s ?v?r?ll health, length ?f asbestos exposure, ?nd smoking history ?l?? m?? h?v? ?n impact ?n th?ir prognosis.
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