Mesothelioma Awareness Day is on September 26th each year. This day has helped to raise awareness about mesothelioma, the asbestos-caused cancer. This day is supported by patients, loved ones, caregivers, researchers, doctors, and survivors. There are many groups working towards a mesothelioma cancer cure. Many of these groups often provide social and financial support to patients.
Participating in this day will help to spread information about mesothelioma. This helps raise funds for research on mesothelioma treatments. People can show their support and get involved in many ways. Check to see if there are any Mesothelioma Awareness Day events in your area. The mesothelioma community also comes together on this special day to connect and share their experiences.
What Does a Mesothelioma Diagnosis Mean?
Mesothelioma is a rare, aggressive form of cancer that develops in the lining of the lungs, abdomen, or heart. Mesothelioma is caused by exposure to asbestos. Although this cancer has a poor prognosis, there are many long-term survivors.
The stage of the disease, cell type, location, and subtype (i.e., pleural or peritoneal) are some of the most important factors for a patient’s survival. Additional factors that have an impact on life expectancy include the overall health of the patient at the time of diagnosis, age of the patient, whether or not the cancer has spread, and treatments are chosen.
Standard treatments for mesothelioma are similar to the options associated with other forms of cancer. They include surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy. Usually, a combination of these treatments is used to combat this disease. For people who do not respond well to conventional treatments, newer treatments may be available. Mesothelioma treatments can be used as a means to improve the patient’s prognosis. And they can extend the life expectancy of a patient. Or they can be used palliatively to reduce pain and discomfort associated with mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma Awareness Day
A diagnosis of mesothelioma can be frightening, confusing, and frustrating. Mesothelioma is a rare and aggressive form of cancer that is challenging to treat. However, once a definitive diagnosis is obtained, the primary goal of the patient is to live as long as possible with this rare cancer.
The primary goal of Mesothelioma Awareness Day is to boost education about this cancer. Raising mesothelioma awareness is important for several reasons.
- Awareness can lead some patients to a diagnosis sooner. With mesothelioma, an early diagnosis may offer the best possible prognosis.
- Further awareness can help with early mesothelioma symptom recognition. The disease has a long latency period that can make diagnosis difficult. In general, mesothelioma develops almost 10 to 50 years after asbestos exposure.
- Many people around the world are at-risk for this cancer. In truth, more than 20 million people in the United States are at risk of developing malignant mesothelioma.
- Increased knowledge about asbestos exposure and its dangers can bring this disease to the forefront of vulnerable patients’ minds. Preventing asbestos exposure can also help prevent mesothelioma.
It is important to raise awareness about who is at risk of mesothelioma from asbestos exposure. As a result, these patients may speak to their doctor sooner about their potential exposure risks. Speaking with a doctor sooner may lead to earlier testing, diagnosis, and treatment.
How to Participate
There are many ways to participate and observe Mesothelioma Awareness Day. Some people may want to attend events in their community. Others may want to join in fundraising efforts or find support from mesothelioma community members.
Mesothelioma Awareness Day options may include:
- Attend educational events. Common topics include learning more about malignant mesothelioma and recent treatment advances.
- Donate. People can help fund mesothelioma research by donating to foundations.
- Dress in blue. Show support for the mesothelioma community and help raise awareness by wearing blue.
- Join fundraising efforts. There are often mesothelioma fundraising walks or other types of local and virtual events on this day.
- Post to social media. Use the tag #curemeso for any mesothelioma awareness social media posts.