Curcumin Treatment for Mesothelioma: Research is Encouraging

curcumin treatment for mesothelioma

The research on curcumin treatment for mesothelioma looks promising, but more hard science is needed before doctors can incorporate it into their treatment plans.  That is the message from a new multi-center international review of studies on curcumin for mesothelioma.  Curcumin is a phytochemical that gives the spice turmeric its distinctive yellow color. Phytochemicals are compounds produced by plants. Different phytochemicals help plants fight disease or protect themselves from other threats.  The new review summarizes the research on curcumin treatment for mesothelioma. It suggests that this compound may one day be a standard part of treating this intractable cancer.  What Do We Know About Curcumin? Practitioners of natural medicine have used the curcumin in turmeric to treat disease for hundreds … Continue reading Curcumin Treatment for Mesothelioma: Research is Encouraging »

Global Asbestos Ban Needed More Than Ever, Study Says

asbestos ban

The authors of a new report on the “silent epidemic” of mesothelioma say a worldwide asbestos ban is more urgent now than ever. The researchers are from universities in Australia, New Zealand and Pennsylvania. They are experts in medicine, public health, and pathology.  Their new report sums up the global problem of asbestos and its link to deadly illnesses like lung cancer, asbestosis, and malignant mesothelioma. Australia and New Zealand are among the countries that no longer allow any asbestos in or out but they still have many cases of mesothelioma.  The US has yet to institute an asbestos ban. Malignant mesothelioma affects about 2,500 Americans a year.  The Link Between Asbestos and Mesothelioma Asbestos is the primary cause of … Continue reading Global Asbestos Ban Needed More Than Ever, Study Says »

Mesothelioma Pain Management with PCC

mesothelioma pain management

A study out of the UK says more doctors should consider using a minimally invasive surgical technique called PCC in mesothelioma pain management. They also say it should happen earlier. Percutaneous cervical cordotomy (PCC)  uses an electrode to destroy a small set of nerves in the spinal cord. These nerves send pain signals to the brain.  Although the evidence for PCC is limited, the researchers say their study shows it is safe and effective for mesothelioma pain management. Unfortunately, the patients who do have PCC tend to have it late in their illness.  Pleural Mesothelioma Discomfort Malignant pleural mesothelioma is a cancer of the thin tissue that encases the lungs. There are no nerves in this tissue, so patients do … Continue reading Mesothelioma Pain Management with PCC »

Diagnostic CT Scan for Mesothelioma: More is Better

diagnostic ct scan

A new report out of the UK suggests that a thorough diagnostic CT scan for pleural mesothelioma should include images of the abdomen and pelvis, as well as the chest.  When a person goes to the doctor with early signs of malignant pleural mesothelioma, a CT scan of the chest is often the next step in making a diagnosis. CT scans create a 3-dimensional image of internal organs, making it easier to spot mesothelioma tumors.  But a research team led by the University of Bristol says a diagnostic CT scan that shows only the chest might miss mesothelioma tumors in other areas. How a Diagnostic CT Scan Works CT stands for computerized tomography. CT scanning is an advanced type of … Continue reading Diagnostic CT Scan for Mesothelioma: More is Better »

Researchers Argue Against Surgery for Mesothelioma

surgery for mesothelioma

A pair of California surgeons say surgery for mesothelioma is rarely worthwhile. They point to what they say are flawed studies on surgical treatment. One trial they believe was well-conducted seems to show reduced mesothelioma survival after surgery. Writing in the journal Translational Lung Cancer Research, the doctors argue that most patients should choose non-surgical treatment for mesothelioma.  Some Background on Surgery for Mesothelioma Pleural mesothelioma is a cancer of the lining around the lungs. It is an aggressive cancer with no known cure. There are two primary approaches to surgery for mesothelioma. Both types are controversial and the subject of much debate among surgeons.  Extrapleural pneumonectomy (EPP) is a surgical approach that involves removing the pleural membrane, one lung, … Continue reading Researchers Argue Against Surgery for Mesothelioma »

Genetics Affect Accuracy of SMRP Test for Mesothelioma

SMRP test for mesothelioma

The SMRP test for mesothelioma is a tool doctors use to help diagnose asbestos cancer and plan treatment. But new research suggests that the test is not as useful as it could be due to genetic variability.  Slovenian doctors say a person’s genetics influence how much SMRP they produce.  Based on their research, they recommend combining the SMRP test for mesothelioma with genetic testing. Their findings suggest the combination method produces a more accurate and useful mesothelioma biomarker. What is the SMRP Test for Mesothelioma? SMRP stands for soluble mesothelin-related peptides. They are produced when proteins found in the mesothelial membranes start to break down. Malignant mesothelioma is one condition that can trigger this breakdown.  As a mesothelioma tumor grows … Continue reading Genetics Affect Accuracy of SMRP Test for Mesothelioma »

Cosmetic Talc Can Cause Mesothelioma, Study Finds

cosmetic talc can cause mesothelioma

A new study in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine appears to offer definitive evidence that repeated exposure to cosmetic talc can cause mesothelioma.  It is an issue that has come up repeatedly in courtrooms in recent years. Lawyers for mesothelioma patients who have used cosmetic talc say the products are unsafe. Manufacturers like Johnson & Johnson insist they are pure.  But the new study shows that may not be the case. If the product is contaminated with asbestos, as many appear to be, the study shows cosmetic talc can cause mesothelioma.  How Can Cosmetic Talc Cause Mesothelioma? Talcum powder is made from talc, which contains magnesium and silicon. Because it absorbs moisture, people use it to keep skin dry … Continue reading Cosmetic Talc Can Cause Mesothelioma, Study Finds »

PD-L1 Inhibitor Nivolumab Works Well in New Mesothelioma Study

PD-L1 inhibitor nivolumab

A study of the PD-L1 inhibitor nivolumab showed “safety and efficacy” in mesothelioma patients who failed with other treatments.  Nivolumab is a type of immunotherapy marketed under the brand name Opdivo. It is similar to pembrolizumab (Keytruda) in that it blocks the tumor-promoting protein PD-L1. Nivolumab is most often used for patients with non-small cell lung cancer.  A multicenter phase II Japanese study found the PD-L1 inhibitor nivolumab helped a group of pleural mesothelioma patients live longer. Just as importantly, the side effects of the drug were “manageable”.  Human Trial of PD-L1 Inhibitor Nivolumab Chemotherapy with pemetrexed (Alimta) and cisplatin is the standard first-line treatment for pleural mesothelioma. But many patients either do not respond to chemotherapy or they stop … Continue reading PD-L1 Inhibitor Nivolumab Works Well in New Mesothelioma Study »

Social Distancing for Mesothelioma Patients: Unexpected Upside?

social distancing for mesothelioma patients

As concern about the novel coronavirus spreads around the world, there could be an unexpected upside to social distancing for mesothelioma patients.  Social distancing is the recommendation that people not gather in larger groups. Even in smaller settings, the CDC recommends that people stay at least six feet apart from one another to avoid spreading the virus.  The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is caused by the virus SARS-CoV2. Because humans have not yet built up immunity to SARS-CoV2, it is more likely to make them sick. Mesothelioma patients may have even lower resistance to disease. This is why social distancing for mesothelioma patients is especially important. As people become more aware of the threat to themselves at others, they are less … Continue reading Social Distancing for Mesothelioma Patients: Unexpected Upside? »

Possible New Drug for Mesothelioma Gets First FDA Approval

new drug for mesothelioma

A possible new drug for mesothelioma has received FDA approval for the treatment of advanced epithelioid sarcoma.  Tazemetostat (Tazverik) is an oral medication made by a company called Epizyme. It is a brand new kind of drug that blocks a protein called EZH2. Tazemetostat is in testing for several different types of cancer, including malignant mesothelioma.  The recent FDA approval is an encouraging sign that it could one day be a new drug for mesothelioma.  In Search of a New Drug for Mesothelioma  Malignant mesothelioma is one of the most serious consequences of exposure to asbestos. Once asbestos fibers get into the lungs and other tissues, they never leave. Their presence sets up a cascade of cellular reactions that can … Continue reading Possible New Drug for Mesothelioma Gets First FDA Approval »

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