Exposed to Asbestos? Lung Fluid Test May Waste Valuable Time

exposed to asbestos worker

If you have been exposed to asbestos and your doctor sees a mesothelioma tumor on your CT scan, it may be a waste of time to do a lung fluid test, too. Many different types of cancer cause excess lung fluid or pleural effusions. Looking for cancer cells in pleural effusions is one of the ways doctors test for cancers like pleural mesothelioma. This is called effusion cytology. But a new study says this test may not be very reliable for people with malignant mesothelioma. If other factors point to mesothelioma, they say it makes more sense to skip effusion cytology and go straight to a biopsy. Mesothelioma Develops in People Exposed to Asbestos Pleural mesothelioma is a type of … Continue reading Exposed to Asbestos? Lung Fluid Test May Waste Valuable Time »

Mesothelioma Chemotherapy with Avastin Helps Pain, Neuropathy

mesothelioma chemotherapy with Avastin

New evidence suggests that supplementing standard mesothelioma chemotherapy with Avastin (bevacizumab) may lead to less pain. It may also reduce the risk of another mesothelioma complication called peripheral neuropathy. That word comes from a newly-published study involving several French hospitals. The study is a follow-up to the French-led MAPS study from 2016. The MAPS study showed that performing mesothelioma chemotherapy with Avastin – in addition to the standard chemotherapy drugs – improved mesothelioma survival by 23 percent. Now it looks like the three-drug combination can also help mesothelioma patients live longer with fewer side effects. Mesothelioma Complications and Side Effects Avastin is a VEGF inhibitor. It works by preventing the formation of blood vessels that feed a growing tumor. The … Continue reading Mesothelioma Chemotherapy with Avastin Helps Pain, Neuropathy »

Case Shows Swallowing Difficulty May Be Among Early Signs of Mesothelioma

early signs of mesothelioma

The case of a Spanish mesothelioma patient suggests that difficulty swallowing can be one of the rarest early signs of mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is a cancer that starts on the membrane lining the chest or abdomen. A swallowing problem – also called dysphagia – is not typically associated with mesothelioma. But a recent article in a Spanish medical journal signals that it might be time to consider this symptom as one of the early signs of mesothelioma.   Knowing the Symptoms of Mesothelioma The two major types of malignant mesothelioma are pleural and peritoneal. Pleural mesothelioma grows on the lining around the lungs. Peritoneal mesothelioma grows on the lining around the abdomen. In people with pleural mesothelioma, chest pain and breathing … Continue reading Case Shows Swallowing Difficulty May Be Among Early Signs of Mesothelioma »

Gel-Based Mesothelioma Treatment: A Novel Approach to Pleural Mesothelioma

gel-based mesothelioma treatment

Swiss scientists are developing a novel gel-based mesothelioma treatment for people with pleural disease. Early studies suggest it may be a safer way to deliver cancer-fighting drugs with fewer side effects. The gel-based mesothelioma treatment combines the chemotherapy drug cisplatin with a natural “glue” called fibrin. When the gel is applied during surgery, it can keep fighting tumors for months. Why Develop a Gel-Based Treatment? Cisplatin is a platinum-based drug. Together with pemetrexed (Alimta), it is one of the most common chemotherapy drugs for mesothelioma. In the past decade, doctors came up with a way to increase the effectiveness of cisplatin in people with peritoneal mesothelioma. These patients get chemotherapy the usual way. But they also get a rinse of … Continue reading Gel-Based Mesothelioma Treatment: A Novel Approach to Pleural Mesothelioma »

Radiotherapy for Mesothelioma Doubles Survival in New Study

Radiotherapy for mesothelioma

Italian researchers presenting at an international conference this week say the right kind of radiotherapy for mesothelioma can dramatically boost survival. Radiation oncologist Marco Trovo and his colleagues at the University Hospital of Udine conducted the new mesothelioma research. They studied 108 pleural mesothelioma patients whose tumors could not be completely removed with surgery. Pleural mesothelioma affects the membrane around the lungs and is usually fatal within a year. But in the new study, more than half of the patients who had high doses of targeted radiotherapy in just the right area were still alive two years later. In contrast, just over a quarter of the patients who had palliative radiotherapy for mesothelioma lived to two years. Curative Versus Palliative … Continue reading Radiotherapy for Mesothelioma Doubles Survival in New Study »

Mesothelioma Tumor Progression Can be Tracked With Blood Test

mesothelioma tumor progression

Italian researchers say it’s possible to monitor mesothelioma tumor progression with a simple blood test. They make their case in a Letter to the Editor in the latest edition of the Journal of Thoracic Oncology. The researchers say blood serum levels of the protein mesothelin correlate closely with tumor volume in malignant pleural mesothelioma patients. They are recommending that the blood test be used alongside CT to track mesothelioma tumor progression. The Importance of Monitoring Mesothelioma Tumor Progression Pleural mesothelioma is a rare cancer with a grim prognosis. Mesothelioma tumors tend to grow and spread quickly. Doctors have to carefully monitor mesothelioma tumor progression to tell if a treatment is working. Most mesothelioma patients have chemotherapy with Alimta (pemetrexed) and … Continue reading Mesothelioma Tumor Progression Can be Tracked With Blood Test »

Prophylactic Radiation Will Not Prevent Pleural Mesothelioma Metastasis

mesothelioma metastasis prevention

A UK study says prophylactic radiation of the chest wall is unlikely to prevent pleural mesothelioma metastasis.   Pleural mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer caused by asbestos. Tumors start on the lining around the lungs and can spread to the lungs and other organs. Pleural mesothelioma is the most common type of asbestos cancer. Doctors sometimes use procedures that pierce the chest wall to help diagnose mesothelioma or to deal with mesothelioma side effects. Sometimes, new mesothelioma tumors can form along the instrument tracts or in the spot where the chest wall was pierced. When tumors spread it is known as mesothelioma metastasis. Some evidence suggests that radiating the chest wall after a procedure might prevent mesothelioma metastasis in that … Continue reading Prophylactic Radiation Will Not Prevent Pleural Mesothelioma Metastasis »

New Mesothelioma Clinical Trial Will Test Personalized Immunotherapy

mesothelioma clinical trial of dendritic cells

A Dutch company has recruited the first patients into a pivotal mesothelioma clinical trial of autologous dendritic cells. Dendritic cells are immune system cells that work as messengers. They help tell T cells to attack cancers like malignant mesothelioma. The new mesothelioma clinical trial will test using the patient’s own dendritic cells (autologous cells) as a way to keep cancer from coming back after mesothelioma treatment. Expanding Mesothelioma Treatment Options There is only one approved treatment for malignant pleural mesothelioma. This “standard of care” treatment is chemotherapy with Alimta (pemetrexed) and cisplatin. Although most mesothelioma patients receive this treatment, very few live longer than a year after diagnosis. A Netherlands-based company called Amphera is trying to change those odds. Its … Continue reading New Mesothelioma Clinical Trial Will Test Personalized Immunotherapy »

Patients with Impaired Kidneys Could Still Take Alimta for Mesothelioma, Study Finds

Alimta for mesothelioma is kidney patients

New research in the Netherlands suggests that patients who would not normally be prescribed Alimta for mesothelioma could still benefit from the gold standard mesothelioma treatment. The key is an alternate dosing strategy. Alimta is a powerful drug that works by blocking a molecule needed for cell replication. Right now, doctors do not recommend Alimta for mesothelioma in people with poor kidney function. But Dutch pharmacology experts now say it is possible to adjust the dosing to make Alimta safer for these mesothelioma patients. Alimta for Mesothelioma: Proper Dosing is Key The FDA approved Alimta for mesothelioma in 2004. Alimta (pemetrexed) is still the only drug approved for the treatment of malignant mesothelioma. It has also been approved to treat … Continue reading Patients with Impaired Kidneys Could Still Take Alimta for Mesothelioma, Study Finds »

Risk of Dying from Mesothelioma Varies by Type, Study Shows

Risk of dying from mesothelioma

The risk of dying from mesothelioma rises and gradually falls  in the decades after exposure for most, but not all, types of asbestos cancer. New research shows those peaks and valleys can vary based on a number of factors. Public health researchers from across Italy recently published their findings on asbestos workers’ risk of dying from mesothelioma. They suggest that the lifetime risk of dying from peritoneal mesothelioma stays high, even after the risk of death from pleural mesothelioma and lung cancer begins to drop off. Quantifying the Risk of Dying from Mesothelioma Asbestos is the primary cause of all three types of mesothelioma: pleural, peritoneal, and pericardial. Pleural mesothelioma is the most common asbestos-related cancer. Pleural tumors start on … Continue reading Risk of Dying from Mesothelioma Varies by Type, Study Shows »

Get your free copy of
“Surviving Mesothelioma” Today!