Encouragement for Mesothelioma Patients with Indwelling Pleural Catheters (IPCs)

Encouragement for Mesothelioma Patients with Indwelling Pleural Catheters (IPCs)Mesothelioma patients with an (IPC) for pleural effusion are encouraged. The device is now recommended and widely used as a first-line treatment. In fact, IPCs may even eventually facilitate new kinds of mesothelioma treatments.

In a study on how IPCs compare with other treatment options, researchers examined the benefits and drawbacks of IPCs. The study included patients with a broad range of cancer, including malignant mesothelioma. The rest had either breast cancer or lung cancer.

IPCs for Pleural Effusion

The buildup of excess lung fluid is known as pleural effusion. It is one of the most life-limiting and bothersome side effects of mesothelioma.

As mesothelioma tumors grow, the body often reacts by filling the pleural space around the lungs with fluid. If not drained out, this fluid can put pressure on the lungs making it difficult and even painful to breathe.

In the past, mesothelioma patients suffering from pleural effusion had to visit the hospital frequently to have the fluid taken out with a needle. Surgical methods to close or even remove the pleural space can also be used.

IPCs are small tubes that stay in place and allow patients to drain their own lung fluid at home. In recent years, IPCs have become more popular.

Mesothelioma Patients and Their IPCs

A new study gives good data on the options available for both diagnosis and treatment of malignant pleural effusion. This contains good news for mesothelioma patients who are benefitting from IPC devices.

The study, published in a recent issue of the journal Seminars in Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, included a practical review of the current knowledge of IPCs. It also summarized other treatment options for pleural malignancies.

IPCs are relatively new. This study helps clinicians reduce hospital length of stay. And it also helps to avoid unnecessary pleural intervention in mesothelioma patients. It also stresses the importance of patient choice in clinical decision-making.

“Good-quality data have led to a paradigm shift in the management options of pleural malignancies, and the indwelling pleural catheter is now recommended and widely used as a first-line intervention,” writes study author Julien Guinde MD, of North University Hospital in France.


Guinde, Julien, Hervé Dutau, and Philippe Astoul. “Management of Malignant Pleural Effusion: Where Are We Now?.” In Seminars in Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine. Thieme Medical Publishers, Inc., 2022. https://www.thieme-connect.com/products/ejournals/abstract/10.1055/s-0042-1748185#info

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