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 »

Mesothelioma Doctors Urged to Sharpen Their Communication Skills

mesothelioma doctors need better communication

A Japanese study suggests that some mesothelioma doctors are falling short when it comes to communicating with their patients. The study was based on quality-of-life surveys of seventy-three pleural mesothelioma patients. Patients answered two open-ended questions about their care experience. The researchers say most concerns had to do with communication. Many patients said they wanted clearer explanations and more empathy from their mesothelioma doctors. Unique Challenges of Malignant Mesothelioma Coping with any type of cancer can be stressful and confusing. But mesothelioma presents some special challenges to both patients and mesothelioma doctors.   Pleural mesothelioma is a rare and complex malignancy with a poor prognosis. No single treatment is likely to help. On top of this, mesothelioma symptoms such as … Continue reading Mesothelioma Doctors Urged to Sharpen Their Communication Skills »

Cancer Centers May Not Manage Mesothelioma Symptoms Adequately, Study Finds

manage mesothelioma symptoms

UK researchers say the number of patients receiving palliative care to manage mesothelioma symptoms may be lagging behind the need. Nottingham University conducted a needs assessment of more than 700 patients over two years. Seventy percent of patients with pleural mesothelioma or another thoracic cancer completed a questionnaire shortly after diagnosis. Their results revealed a high unmet need for palliation to manage mesothelioma symptoms and those of other thoracic malignancies. How Does Palliative Care Help Manage Mesothelioma Symptoms? Palliative care is any kind of care that helps patients manage mesothelioma symptoms. These can be physical symptoms like breathing difficulty or fatigue. Or they can be psychological symptoms like fear and worry. Palliative care to manage mesothelioma symptoms can include things … Continue reading Cancer Centers May Not Manage Mesothelioma Symptoms Adequately, Study Finds »

Predicting Thyroid Disease After Immunotherapy for Mesothelioma

thyroid disease after imminotherapy

Researchers in Italy say it is possible to predict which mesothelioma patients are likely to develop thyroid disease after immunotherapy. They are advising their colleagues to use the technique for better management of malignant mesothelioma. Immune checkpoint inhibitors like Keytruda are improving the outlook for people with asbestos cancer. But immunotherapy is not without risk. Certain people are prone to develop thyroid disease after immunotherapy. If doctors know ahead of time which mesothelioma patients are at risk, they can be better prepared to manage problems later.   Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors and Thyroid Disease after Immunotherapy Pleural mesothelioma is extremely difficult to treat. Immune checkpoint inhibitors have given many mesothelioma patients new hope. Recent studies suggest that some of these drugs … Continue reading Predicting Thyroid Disease After Immunotherapy for Mesothelioma »

Talc Pleurodesis Patients Need Alternate PET/CT Scan for Mesothelioma

PET/CT scan for mesothelioma

Certain patients may get more benefit out of an alternate type of PET/CT scan for mesothelioma. Positron emission tomography (PET) is a common tool for diagnosing mesothelioma. It is also used to monitor the effectiveness of mesothelioma treatments. Doctors often combine PET with computed tomography (CT) for an even clearer picture of mesothelioma progression. Typically, a PET/CT scan for mesothelioma involves injection of a tracer called FDG (fluorodeoxyglucose). But it turns out that PET/CT scans with this tracer do not work well for all mesothelioma patients. A new Japanese study suggests that mesothelioma patients who have had a procedure called talc pleurodesis should consider a different kind of PET/CT scan instead. How Does Talc Pleurodesis Impact PET/CT Scan for Mesothelioma? … Continue reading Talc Pleurodesis Patients Need Alternate PET/CT Scan for Mesothelioma »

Palliative Care for Mesothelioma: Earlier is Not Necessarily Better

palliative care for mesothelioma

New research suggests that palliative care for mesothelioma may be most helpful in later stages of the disease. Scientists in the UK and Australia say there is no reason for most mesothelioma patients to be referred to a palliative care specialist when they are diagnosed. As long as patients have access to palliative care when they need it, early referral does not seem to make much difference in quality of life. What is Palliative Care for Mesothelioma? Palliative care for mesothelioma aims to manage the symptoms of the disease and the treatment. Chest pain and shortness of breath are common symptoms of mesothelioma. Mesothelioma treatment can cause fatigue, nausea, and weight loss. Physical symptoms can cause depression or anxiety, which … Continue reading Palliative Care for Mesothelioma: Earlier is Not Necessarily Better »

Shortness of Breath Treatment Can ‘Seed’ New Mesothelioma Tumors

mesothelioma tumors in lungs

Mesothelioma patients who get pleural catheters to help with shortness of breath may pay a high price. New research shows about a quarter of them will develop new mesothelioma tumors at the spot where the catheter was placed. In a newly published paper, Canadian researchers say doctors need to consider the possibility of these catheter tract metastases (CTMs) when advising mesothelioma patients. Indwelling Pleural Catheters and Mesothelioma Many mesothelioma patients develop excess fluid around their lungs. This fluid puts pressure on the lungs and makes it hard for patients to get a deep breath. Shortness of breath is a common symptom of pleural mesothelioma. Indwelling pleural catheters (IPCs) can help. An IPC is a little tube inserted into the pleural … Continue reading Shortness of Breath Treatment Can ‘Seed’ New Mesothelioma Tumors »

Pleural Mesothelioma Patients Feel Better with This Symptom Management Regimen

For mesothelioma patients with indwelling pleural catheters, new research suggests that draining them daily can improve their quality of life and may even resolve the problem faster than waiting until symptoms arise. Pleural effusions, a buildup of fluid between the layers of the pleural membrane surrounding the lungs, is a fact of life for patients with several types of cancer, including pleural mesothelioma. If not addressed, this fluid accumulation often leads to life-limiting side effects like chest pain, coughing, and breathlessness.   Managing Pleural Effusions from Malignant Mesothelioma There are surgical procedures aimed at preventing pleural effusions in mesothelioma patients and resolving symptoms by physically closing the spaces where fluid accumulates. Closing up the pleural space is known as pleurodesis. … Continue reading Pleural Mesothelioma Patients Feel Better with This Symptom Management Regimen »

Plasma-Based Surgery May Be Safer Alternative for Some Mesothelioma Patients

A minimally-invasive surgical technique that uses plasma energy to destroy diseased pleural tissue may be a safer alternative for mesothelioma patients who would not otherwise be candidates for surgery. Doctors at Harefield Hospital in the UK are reporting good results and no serious side effects from using the PlasmaJet Surgical System to operate on a patient with malignant pleural mesothelioma. PlasmaJet uses the energy of ionized gas, called plasma, to dissect, vaporize, and seal fragile tissues through small incisions with no cutting. The UK team believes it may be a viable option for patients with advanced mesothelioma or those with other health problems that would make conventional surgery too risky. Mesothelioma Surgery Not for Every Patient Pleural mesothelioma grows on … Continue reading Plasma-Based Surgery May Be Safer Alternative for Some Mesothelioma Patients »

Life After Mesothelioma Can Still Be a Challenge

A new Japanese study has some sobering news for people hoping to survive malignant mesothelioma: Life after mesothelioma can still be challenging. The study was conducted by multiple centers across Japan. A total of 133 mesothelioma patients who had been free of disease for at least five years completed questionnaires about their experiences and their quality of life. Assessing the Lives of Mesothelioma Survivors To get a picture of what life is like for mesothelioma survivors, the study group sent a 64-question survey to hospitals and patient advocacy groups. Patients completed the questionnaire themselves and then returned it to the researchers by mail. The questions specifically about quality-of-life came from the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer and the … Continue reading Life After Mesothelioma Can Still Be a Challenge »

Get your free copy of
“Surviving Mesothelioma” Today!