Some Long-Term Mesothelioma Survivors May Have Few Symptoms

Long-Term Mesothelioma Survivors

New research shows that some long-term mesothelioma survivors may have few or no symptoms of the disease for years.  The research appears in a recent issue of the journal Clinical Lung Cancer. A team of Finnish doctors wanted to identify the unique characteristics of long-term mesothelioma survivors. They discovered that some of these survivors seem to have an indolent form of asbestos cancer. This suggests that it is possible for a person to live for many years with pleural  mesothelioma and not even know they have it. Typical Mesothelioma Symptoms It is not unusual for mesothelioma patients to have no symptoms in the early stages, but long-term mesothelioma survivors are rare. Once the cancer takes hold, it usually grows quickly.  … Continue reading Some Long-Term Mesothelioma Survivors May Have Few Symptoms »

Study Highlights Treatment Disparities in Female Mesothelioma Patients

Female Mesothelioma Patients

Female mesothelioma patients are less likely to have surgery and other aggressive treatments than male patients are, but they still tend to live longer. That’s according to a nine-year study of nearly 19,000 pleural mesothelioma patients.  Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine led the study. The team used the National Cancer Database to identify pleural mesothelioma cases diagnosed between 2004 and 2013. The study included more than four thousand female mesothelioma patients.  The conclusion is that there are serious disparities in the way doctors treat men and women with malignant mesothelioma. Gender Differences in Mesothelioma Incidence Exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of malignant mesothelioma. Although it can affect either gender, most mesothelioma patients are … Continue reading Study Highlights Treatment Disparities in Female Mesothelioma Patients »

Artificial Intelligence in Mesothelioma Diagnosis, Prognosis, and Treatment Planning

Artificial Intelligence

Two newly-published studies highlight some of the ways that artificial intelligence may help with the diagnosis and treatment of malignant mesothelioma.  The first study focuses on machine learning algorithms for mesothelioma diagnosis. Researchers used data from Turkey, which has a high rate of mesothelioma among families.  A separate study from New York’s Mount Sinai Medical Center demonstrates the role that artificial intelligence can play in planning mesothelioma radiotherapy. Both studies suggest that machine learning may be a valuable tool to help doctors tackle asbestos cancer.  How Does Machine Learning Work? Artificial intelligence refers to intelligence generated by a computer. Like people, computers have to “learn” before they can provide intelligent answers to medical questions.  In both of the new studies, … Continue reading Artificial Intelligence in Mesothelioma Diagnosis, Prognosis, and Treatment Planning »

Epithelioid Mesothelioma and Lung Cancer: Biomarker Shows Which is Which

epthelioid mesothelioma and lung cancer

Researchers from Hiroshima University say they have found a nearly foolproof way to tell the difference between epithelioid mesothelioma and lung cancer.  This is critical because the prognosis can be very different between the two. They are also treated differently.  But epithelioid mesothelioma and lung cancer are similar in many ways. They cause many of the same symptoms. Even their cells look similar under the microscope. This can make it hard for doctors to deliver an accurate and timely diagnosis.  If the new findings are right, the biomarker identified by the Hiroshima researchers could be a diagnostic gamechanger.  Lung Adenocarcinoma or Pleural Mesothelioma? At first glance, epithelioid mesothelioma and lung cancer seem to be very different. Mesothelioma makes up about … Continue reading Epithelioid Mesothelioma and Lung Cancer: Biomarker Shows Which is Which »

Breast Cancer and Mesothelioma: Case Study Illustrates Diagnostic Challenge

breast cancer and mesothelioma

A newly published Croatian case illustrates how challenging it can sometimes be to distinguish between breast cancer and mesothelioma. The case involves a 61-year-old woman with what appeared to be breast cancer. Further study revealed that what the woman actually had was pleural mesothelioma. The mesothelioma had spread to her breast.  Breast cancer and mesothelioma cells look similar under the microscope. But they are very different. The authors of the new report caution doctors against the “pitfall” of mistaking one for the other.  Breast Metastasis is Rare Pleural mesothelioma occurs on the membrane that surrounds the lungs. It is rare for mesothelioma to spread to the breast. The most common place for mesothelioma cells to spread is the lungs.  Women … Continue reading Breast Cancer and Mesothelioma: Case Study Illustrates Diagnostic Challenge »

Predicting the Risk of Death from Mesothelioma

risk of death from mesothelioma

New research suggests that the risk of death from mesothelioma does not always hinge on disease type or overall health. Researchers in Brazil and at Mayo Clinic have identified some subtle mesothelioma risk factors that only pathologists can see. These factors go beyond the characteristics of the mesothelioma cells themselves. The study shows the environment around the tumor, the number and type of immune system cells at the tumor site, and even how many cells are in the tumor can all impact the risk of death from mesothelioma.  Understanding the Risk Factors for Mesothelioma Asbestos exposure causes most cases of mesothelioma. But not everyone who encounters asbestos gets cancer. Genes and certain lifestyle factors may influence whether an exposed person … Continue reading Predicting the Risk of Death from Mesothelioma »

PD-L1 Expression and Mesothelioma Prognosis

PD-L1 expression and mesothelioma prognosis

The largest study yet on PD-L1 expression and mesothelioma prognosis shows that patients with more of this protein in their cells have poorer odds of survival. Programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1) helps cancer cells evade immune system attack.  Other studies have suggested a link between PD-L1 expression and mesothelioma prognosis. But the new meta-analysis performed by two Chinese researchers appears to confirm it with an even bigger data set.  Understanding Mesothelioma Prognosis Malignant mesothelioma is an uncommon cancer that typically carries a poor prognosis. Many people diagnosed with mesothelioma lose their lives to the illness within a year.  But there are also many exceptions. Some mesothelioma survivors live for decades after a mesothelioma diagnosis. Australian Paul Kraus is an example. … Continue reading PD-L1 Expression and Mesothelioma Prognosis »

Mesothelioma and Lung Cancer: These Biomarkers Can Tell the Difference

mesothelioma and lung cancer

Researchers in Canada say when it comes to distinguishing between mesothelioma and lung cancer, some proteins are more valuable than others.  The team has identified an especially important protein biomarker for mesothelioma. A biomarker is a compound in body fluid or tissue that can act as a signpost for disease.  Understanding the value of this particular protein as compared to other biomarkers may improve the testing process for mesothelioma. Pleural mesothelioma and lung cancer share many of the same characteristics. Both affect the lungs and both cause similar symptoms. But they are treated differently.  It is not always easy to tell these two cancers apart, even with high-level diagnostic tools. But the biomarker testing completed in Canada may make it … Continue reading Mesothelioma and Lung Cancer: These Biomarkers Can Tell the Difference »

Personalized Immunotherapy for Mesothelioma: New Research Sheds Lights

personalized immunotherapy for mesothelioma

New research conducted by a team of German and Austrian scientists could help make personalized immunotherapy for mesothelioma possible.  Mesothelioma is an incurable cancer caused by exposure to asbestos. Immunotherapy is one of the most promising treatment approaches.  But immunotherapy drugs like Keytruda do not work for all patients. Scientists do not know exactly why this is. The new study suggests that understanding biomarkers could lead to better outcomes through personalized immunotherapy for mesothelioma.  How Does Immunotherapy Work? Immunotherapy is a broad term that means using the patient’s own immune system to fight their cancer. There are many different types of immunotherapy. Some involve stimulating an immune response. Others involve turning off the mechanism that lets mesothelioma cells hide from … Continue reading Personalized Immunotherapy for Mesothelioma: New Research Sheds Lights »

Recommendations for People with a Genetic Predisposition for Mesothelioma

genetic predisposition for mesothelioma

Cancer expects from Ohio State University have just released an updated version of their recommendations for people with a genetic predisposition for mesothelioma.  These people have an inherited mutation on their BAP1 tumor suppressor gene. This mutation puts them at risk for several different types of cancer, including malignant mesothelioma.  It is not possible to prevent cancer in people with this genetic risk factor. But the Ohio State doctors say awareness and screening may help extend the lives of people with a genetic predisposition for mesothelioma.  BAP1 Tumor Predisposition Syndrome BAP1 stands for BRCA association protein 1. The BAP1 gene encodes for the BAP1 protein. BAP1 is one of the proteins that helps keep normal cells from turning into cancer … Continue reading Recommendations for People with a Genetic Predisposition for Mesothelioma »

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