Meta-Analysis Finds Lung-Sparing Surgery the Best Option for Most Mesothelioma Patients

There is now more evidence to support the growing number of experts who favor lung-sparing P/D surgery over radical extrapleural pneumonectomy (EPP) for the treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma. There has been an ongoing debate within the surgical community over which procedure carries the most benefit with the least risk. The late David Sugarbaker, MD, of Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center in Houston was a pioneer of the EPP procedure, which involves removing not only the diseased pleural lining where mesothelioma tumors grow, but also the nearest lung, most of the diaphragm, the pericardium, and other at-risk tissues. But it turns out that, although Sugarbaker and his team were able to show a mesothelioma survival benefit with EPP, their results, … Continue reading Meta-Analysis Finds Lung-Sparing Surgery the Best Option for Most Mesothelioma Patients »

Ofev Fails to Boost Mesothelioma Survival in New Study

In the quest to develop new, more effective first-line treatments for malignant pleural mesothelioma, it now looks like Ofev (nintedanib) is out of the running. Phase III results of the LUME-Meso mesothelioma trial are in and they contain some disappointing news for mesothelioma patients and for the drug’s developer, Boehringer Ingelheim. The news is especially disappointing since the results of the Phase II portion of the trial, released last year, looked promising. At that time, researchers reported a survival gain of more than 5 months among the Ofev-treated mesothelioma patients and progression-free survival of four months. But further research did not support those results, as investigators announced to the world’s lung cancer experts at the IASLC 19th World Lung Cancer … Continue reading Ofev Fails to Boost Mesothelioma Survival in New Study »

A Less Formal Approach to Connecting Mesothelioma Patients and Researchers

immunotherapy research

Mesothelioma researchers in England are experimenting with an innovative way to connect patients and scientists in the quest for a cure. Malignant mesothelioma, the cancer most closely associated with asbestos exposure, is one of the world’s most deadly malignancies. Many patients diagnosed with mesothelioma are given only months to live. Increasingly, clinical research holds great promise for new ways of approaching diseases like mesothelioma, but understanding that research and its implications can be difficult, even when listening to the researchers directly. To bridge the gap, investigators with the June Hancock Mesothelioma Research Fund (JHMRF) in Sheffield, UK have introduced “Meet the Researchers” — a program designed to engage mesothelioma patients and researchers in a more informal way. Mesothelioma Research Can … Continue reading A Less Formal Approach to Connecting Mesothelioma Patients and Researchers »

How Doctors Break Bad News May Impact Mesothelioma Survival

For newly diagnosed mesothelioma patients, having a doctor who is too compassionate could have a negative impact on their survival. Researchers at France’s University of Lille made that seemingly counterintuitive observation as part of the first study of the prognostic role of physician empathy in cancer patients. The results, published in the Journal of Clinical Medicine, suggest that, rather than comforting patients, too much compassion and listening from the oncologist tends to make them worry more about their odds of survival. Physician Attitude and Mesothelioma Outcomes The study involved 179 patients who were diagnosed with lung cancer or pleural mesothelioma between January 2015 and March 2016. Both cancers are difficult to treat and often carry a poor prognosis. This is … Continue reading How Doctors Break Bad News May Impact Mesothelioma Survival »

Lung Fluid Proteins Could be Key to Earlier Mesothelioma Diagnosis

Australian researchers say proteins found in lung fluid could hold the key to diagnosing pleural mesothelioma months or even years before a tumor is visible on imaging scans. Proteins function as communication devices in the body, directing all sorts of critical cellular processes, including the processes that tell cancer cells to begin replicating at a higher rate than normal cells. Scientists at Flinders University, one of the world’s leaders in mesothelioma research, wondered if the proteins that help give rise to malignant pleural mesothelioma could be found in pleural effusions and used as biomarkers to identify the cancer earlier. Looking for Mesothelioma Biomarkers in Lung Fluid In a new study published in the Journal of Proteomics, the team notes that … Continue reading Lung Fluid Proteins Could be Key to Earlier Mesothelioma Diagnosis »

Surgery May Offer Survival Advantage for Rare Mesothelioma Subtypes

People with the most dangerous subtypes of malignant pleural mesothelioma may live longer if they undergo surgery. In an article in the Annals of Thoracic Surgery, University of Arizona researchers say cancer-directed surgery can lengthen survival in people with sarcomatoid and biphasic mesothelioma, two of the hardest cancers to treat. Multiple studies have suggested that there is a survival benefit from surgery in people with epithelioid mesothelioma, the most common subtype. But, the evidence is much more scanty for people with either sarcomatoid or biphasic mesothelioma, both of which are associated with a worse mesothelioma prognosis  and shorter overall survival. Now, the Tucson-based research team says surgery aimed at removing the cancer (rather than just alleviating symptoms) can help these mesothelioma … Continue reading Surgery May Offer Survival Advantage for Rare Mesothelioma Subtypes »

Short Term Mesothelioma Survival Better with Conservative Surgery

Researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai have added their voices to the ongoing debate over the best type of surgery for malignant pleural mesothelioma. After a meta-analysis of 30-day mortality among 500 mesothelioma patients, the group has come down on the side of pleurectomy decortication (PD), the more conservative — and less risky — of the two major types of mesothelioma surgery. Mesothelioma Surgery: EPP vs. P/D Pleural mesothelioma, also referred to as asbestos cancer, is notoriously difficult to treat. Successful mesothelioma treatment usually involves a combination of therapies, such as Alimta (pemetrexed), radiotherapy, and curative surgery in patients who are healthy enough to undergo it. (Surgery is currently only recommended for patients with epithelioid mesothelioma, … Continue reading Short Term Mesothelioma Survival Better with Conservative Surgery »

Mesothelioma Survival Has Changed Little in Two Decades in Canada

There was some sobering news out of Canada this week that gives even more urgency to the need to find a cure for malignant mesothelioma. According to data compiled by Statistics Canada, while the net survival of several types of cancer has increased since the early 1990s, there has been little change in mesothelioma survival. Analysis of Cancer Net Survival The report, published in the journal Health Reports, calculated changes in net survival (where cancer is hypothetically the only possible cause of death) of patients with 30 different types of cancer during two 2-year time periods — 1992 to 1994 and 2012 to 2014. After factoring for age-related changes, the report analyzes differences in the five-year survival rates of patients … Continue reading Mesothelioma Survival Has Changed Little in Two Decades in Canada »

Advanced Computer Program Might Pinpoint Mesothelioma Sooner

Scientists at New York University School of Medicine have successfully used a sophisticated computer program to distinguish between different types of lung cancer and identify the mutated genes behind them. The developers say the technology could open the door to faster diagnosis of other types of cancer, including malignant mesothelioma. Malignant Mesothelioma, the Asbestos Cancer Malignant pleural mesothelioma is a form of lung cancer caused by asbestos exposure. Instead of starting in the lung tissue like other types of lung cancer, it grows on the membrane that surrounds the lungs and can then spread to the lungs and other organs. There is no cure and the prognosis for mesothelioma is usually poor. As with most types of cancer, earlier diagnosis … Continue reading Advanced Computer Program Might Pinpoint Mesothelioma Sooner »

Mobile App Could Help Mesothelioma Patients Find New Treatments

Mesothelioma patients now have a high-tech new way to connect with cutting edge mesothelioma treatments around the world – for a price. A pair of Harvard-trained oncologists have just rolled out a new app that promises to connect people who have cancers like pleural mesothelioma with treatments and clinical trials that even their physicians may not be aware of. The app, called Driver, is being rolled out this week in the US and China in the wake of a trial run with a hundred people over the past year. How Might Driver Help Mesothelioma Patients? One of the biggest obstacles faced by patients diagnosed with rare cancers like pleural or peritoneal mesothelioma is getting the most up-tp-date information about potential … Continue reading Mobile App Could Help Mesothelioma Patients Find New Treatments »

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