Tumor Treating Fields for Mesothelioma Faces Criticism

tumor treating fields

Tumor Treating Fields for mesothelioma is coming under fire from some other researchers. The treatment uses electricity to interfere with division of cancer cells. The FDA approved it for mesothelioma last year under the Humanitarian Device Exemption. It is only the second treatment ever approved for asbestos cancer.  But scientists in Italy and the Netherlands are disputing some of the findings from the STELLAR trial of TTFields. They published separate articles in a recent issue of The Lancet Oncology. STELLAR tested Tumor Treating Fields along with chemotherapy as a novel mesothelioma treatment. The FDA based its approval on the STELLAR results.  But the newly published articles suggest that there were problems with the trial. Both say Tumor Treating Fields is … Continue reading Tumor Treating Fields for Mesothelioma Faces Criticism »

Study Supports Curative Radiation Therapy for Pleural Mesothelioma

radiation therapy for pleural mesothelioma

A new study out of Turkey supports the idea of using highly targeted radiation therapy for pleural mesothelioma that can’t be treated surgically. Pleural mesothelioma is a cancer that grows on the membrane around the lungs. The membrane is called the pleura. Like all forms of mesothelioma, it carries a grim prognosis. But the Turkish researchers say new radiotherapy techniques offer the promise of better outcomes. They compared two types of radiation therapy for pleural mesothelioma. They found that both could be delivered safely and with limited damage to nearby organs.  Unrectable Pleural Mesothelioma The first-line treatment for pleural mesothelioma is chemotherapy. Ideally, chemotherapy will help to shrink the pleural mesothelioma. Then doctors can remove most of it surgically. They … Continue reading Study Supports Curative Radiation Therapy for Pleural Mesothelioma »

Sarcomatoid Mesothelioma Treatment Focuses on Two-Drug Combo

sarcomatoid mesothelioma treatment

Researchers in Spain are developing what they hope will be a more effective sarcomatoid mesothelioma treatment. The new treatment focuses on a pair of drugs that are already being tested in humans.  Mesothelioma impacts about 2,500 Americans each year. Sarcomatoid mesothelioma is a rare form of this rare cancer. About a quarter of the annual cases are sarcomatoid.  This form of cancer is even more aggressive than epithelioid mesothelioma. But sarcomatoid mesothelioma treatment is not significantly different. Neither are the results.  But the new study could change the prognosis for people with asbestos cancer. It appears in the journal Cancer Research. Chemotherapy is the Primary Sarcomatoid Mesothelioma Treatment Most people with malignant mesothelioma receive chemotherapy with cisplatin and Alimta. This … Continue reading Sarcomatoid Mesothelioma Treatment Focuses on Two-Drug Combo »

Drug May help Mesothelioma Patients Overcome Resistance to Chemotherapy

resistance to chemotherapy

A newly-identified compound might eventually help mesothelioma patients overcome resistance to chemotherapy.  Chemotherapy resistance is one of the main reasons that mesothelioma treatments fail.  But researchers at Duke University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have identified a compound that combats resistance to chemotherapy with cisplatin.  Cisplatin is one of the primary drugs in first-line chemotherapy for mesothelioma. If mesothelioma cells can be sensitized to it, patients may have better outcomes.   First-Line Treatment for Malignant Mesothelioma Pleural mesothelioma is a cancer that grows on the lining around the lungs. Peritoneal mesothelioma starts on the lining of the abdomen. Both types of mesothelioma are caused by asbestos exposure.  Chemotherapy with cisplatin and pemetrexed (Alimta) is the treatment that doctors usually try … Continue reading Drug May help Mesothelioma Patients Overcome Resistance to Chemotherapy »

Supplements During Chemotherapy May Work Against Mesothelioma Treatment

supplements during chemotherapy

A new study suggests that it could be risky to take supplements during chemotherapy for mesothelioma and other cancers.  The study took place at the Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center in Buffalo, New York. It focused on more than 1,100  breast cancer patients. It found that patients who took certain antioxidant supplements during chemotherapy had worse outcomes than those who did not.  The study’s authors say antioxidants undermine one of the main jobs of chemotherapy drugs – to create oxidative stress in cancer cells. Chemotherapy is the primary first-line treatment for malignant mesothelioma and many other cancers.  Why Avoid Antioxidant Supplements During Chemotherapy? Antioxidants are compounds found in many fruits and vegetables. Vitamins A, C, E, and B12 are examples … Continue reading Supplements During Chemotherapy May Work Against Mesothelioma Treatment »

Pain a Sign of Successful Pleurodesis for Mesothelioma, Study Says

pleurodesis for mesothelioma

A temporary increase in pain may be a sign of success when undergoing pleurodesis for mesothelioma-related lung fluid. An uncomfortable build-up of lung fluid is one of the most common and life-limiting mesothelioma symptoms.  Chemical pleurodesis is one way doctors treat the problem. About three out of four patients have good luck with pleurodesis for mesothelioma. Now, a new study from the UK suggests that those who have the best results with the procedure also tend to have the most pain afterward.  What is Pleurodesis for Mesothelioma? Pleural mesothelioma is a malignancy that starts in the layers of the pleura. The pleura is a membrane that surrounds the lungs.  When tumors grow in the pleural membrane, they can trigger a … Continue reading Pain a Sign of Successful Pleurodesis for Mesothelioma, Study Says »

Antibiotic May Boost Response to Radiation Therapy for Mesothelioma

response to radiation therapy

A common antibiotic may improve mesothelioma patients’ response to radiation therapy.  The concept is based on new research from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.  Doctors there gave the antibiotic vancomycin to genetically modified mice. The mice had been modified to develop cancer. Mice that got the antibiotic had a better response to radiation therapy than untreated mice.  The effect applied not only to the treated tumor but also to tumors outside the treatment area. A heightened response to radiation therapy could be good news for patients with metastatic mesothelioma.  Understanding Cancer Response to Radiation Therapy Radiation therapy combats malignant mesothelioma by disrupting the DNA inside cancer cells. Mesothelioma tumors are irregularly-shaped which can make them … Continue reading Antibiotic May Boost Response to Radiation Therapy for Mesothelioma »

Is There a Risk for Depression Among Pleural Mesothelioma Patients?

risk for depression

Newly diagnosed pleural mesothelioma patients may be at higher risk for depression and that could be impacting their outcomes.   A new report finds that people diagnosed with advanced lung cancers are more likely to suffer from depression. Pleural mesothelioma is a form of lung cancer.  This risk for depression appears to have an impact on patients’ quality of life, their pain, and even the number of complications they experience.  Assessing the Risk for Depression in Cancer Patients Researchers at Ohio State University directed the study. It included 186 patients with Stage IV non-small-cell lung cancer. The patients had not yet started their cancer treatment.  Although pleural mesothelioma is not the same as non-small cell lung cancer, the two diseases share … Continue reading Is There a Risk for Depression Among Pleural Mesothelioma Patients? »

Anti-Inflammatory Treatment for Mesothelioma Shows Long-Term Benefit

anti-inflammatory treatment for mesothelioma

Doctors in London are reporting a case of long-term mesothelioma survival with anti-inflammatory treatment for mesothelioma. The 64-year-old pleural mesothelioma patient had been a heating engineer. When he was diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma, he elected not to have standard cancer treatments.  His doctors advised him to start on a regimen of aspirin and other anti-inflammatory drugs. On just the anti-inflammatory treatment for mesothelioma, the man was still alive four years after his diagnosis.  Mesothelioma and Inflammation Pleural mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer of the membrane around the lungs. It is most common in people who have worked or lived around asbestos.  When asbestos fibers get into the lungs, they stay there permanently. Studies suggest that the inflammation caused by these … Continue reading Anti-Inflammatory Treatment for Mesothelioma Shows Long-Term Benefit »

Drug May Make Mesothelioma Cells More Sensitive to Radiation

sensitive to radiation

Scottish cancer researchers say they have found a way to make mesothelioma cells more sensitive to radiation.  Radiotherapy is one of the tools doctors can use to help slow progression of the asbestos cancer. It can also help alleviate mesothelioma symptoms.  But proteins expressed by mesothelioma cells can make them less sensitive to radiation. The Glasgow-based research team is getting around this protection with a sensitizing drug. The drug mimics a process that already happens in healthy people. Radiotherapy in the Treatment of Mesothelioma Radiotherapy is not usually the primary treatment for malignant mesothelioma. Most mesothelioma patients have chemotherapy as their first-line treatment.  But newer technology means that radiation can be more targeted than it used to be. This means … Continue reading Drug May Make Mesothelioma Cells More Sensitive to Radiation »

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