Mesothelioma is a rare cancer form, that directly affects the person’s lung lining. In some cases, an abdomen and heartMesothelioma (Asbestos) may also be affected by this deadly disease. About 2,000-3,000 people are diagnosed yearly with Mesothelioma in the United States (approx. 3% of all cancer cases.).

Mesothelioma happens about 4 times more often in males than in females, and all types of such cancer, except for benign one, are fatal, because no cure has been found yet. Mesothelioma life expectancy is usually reported under 1 year following diagnosis. A person’s prognosis depends on few factors, such as early detection and how aggressive the treatment plan is.

To help people better understand this disease, is very helpful by getting valuable information for each specific case of Mesothelioma. On the site, patients can also search best doctors and centers, as well as discover best medical coverage options.

History of Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma is usually resulted from exposure to asbestos, which happens, when fibers of asbestos are ingested or inhaled and lodge in a person’s tissue, resulting in infection or inflammation. Asbestos is a fibrous substance (naturally occuring) that was used in 20th century in a numerous different industries. When the people became aware of the hazards caused by a mineral in 1970s, this product started to decline. About 30% of people diagnosed with Mesothelioma were veterans.

Types of Mesothelioma

There are 5 known types of Mesothelioma which exist. (4 of them are cancerous and 1 is benign). The malignant cancers include:

1. Testicular Mesothelioma: Develops in the vaginalis tunica of the testicles and is most rare type of cancer.

2. Pleural Mesothelioma: Occurs in the lung lining (known as pleura). It occurs in most Mesothelioma cases (about 75%)

3. Pericardial Mesothelioma: Usually develops in the heart’s lining (known as Pericardium). About 5% of all Mesothelioma cancers are pericardial.

4. Peritoneal Mesothelioma: Affects about 20% of all Mesothelioma cases. This type develops in the abdominal cavity lining (peritoneal membrane).

Symptoms of Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma symptoms usually do not appear until 20 to 50 years after person’s initial asbestos exposure has occured. The symptoms of Mesothelioma in most cases resemble least-serious conditions, which in turn makes the diagnosis very difficult.

Common symptoms of Mesothelioma may include: irregular heartbeat, difficulty breathing, chest pain, night sweats, palpitations of heart (in testicular mesothelioma cases). In cases of pleural mesothelioma, the symptoms may include: chest pain, fatigue, persistent cough, lumps under the chest skin, breath shortness. In pericardial cases, a patient experiences pain of the chest, palpitations of heart, high sweats, irregular heartbeat, breathing difficulty. And finally, in cases of peritoneal mesothelioma, the symptoms that may be experienced are: abdominal inflammation and pain, nausea, obstruction of bowel, loss weight.

Diagnosis of Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma diagnosis usually starts with a patient’s review of medical history, following by a physical examination. If doctor suspects problem-several diagnostic tests are required. Such tests include: x-rays, CT scans, PET scans, and MRI. This examination determines the type, location and size of the cancer. Biopsy of tissue and fluid samples are necessary to define cancerous cells.

Treatment of Mesothelioma

After Mesothelioma is diagnosed, the doctor tries to determine the possible best treatment. Treatment may vary from chemotherapy to surgery. People, who has such cancer should find helpful information from Common treatments of Mesothelioma include chemotherapy, surgery and radiation. Affected patients frequently have multiple treatments to subside disease (multimodality therapy). Current studies, including several treatments combinations, are showing significant improvement expectancy life. Such procedures as gene therapy, immunotherapy also improves a patient’s condition. Because such treatments are still experimental, they are only available through some research centers. Mesothelioma trials just now investigated immunotherapy and photodynamic therapy, which still require further research.

Legal Issues

1000’s of American workers were exposed to asbestos in 20th century and were frequently unaware of asbestos hazard. Companies, who manufactured asbestos containing products or used such product daily are responsible for negligence by failing to protect their workers from asbestos exposure. Many mesothelioma lawsuits were filed and to this date continue to be filed.

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