Exposed to Asbestos? Lung Fluid Test May Waste Valuable Time

exposed to asbestos worker

If you have been exposed to asbestos and your doctor sees a mesothelioma tumor on your CT scan, it may be a waste of time to do a lung fluid test, too. Many different types of cancer cause excess lung fluid or pleural effusions. Looking for cancer cells in pleural effusions is one of the ways doctors test for cancers like pleural mesothelioma. This is called effusion cytology. But a new study says this test may not be very reliable for people with malignant mesothelioma. If other factors point to mesothelioma, they say it makes more sense to skip effusion cytology and go straight to a biopsy. Mesothelioma Develops in People Exposed to Asbestos Pleural mesothelioma is a type of … Continue reading Exposed to Asbestos? Lung Fluid Test May Waste Valuable Time »

Analysis of Three Top Mesothelioma Biomarkers

mesothelioma biomarkers testing

New research confirms that some mesothelioma biomarkers are much more effective than others for detecting asbestos cancer. The news comes from a study conducted at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York. Researchers ran an analysis of more than 50 studies on three popular mesothelioma biomarkers. They concluded that two of them make good mesothelioma screening tools but one of them does not.   The Challenge of Early Mesothelioma Diagnosis Mesothelioma is a highly aggressive cancer caused by exposure to asbestos. As with most cancers, the odds of surviving mesothelioma are higher if it is caught early. But mesothelioma does not cause many symptoms in the early stages. This can make it challenging to diagnose. Even … Continue reading Analysis of Three Top Mesothelioma Biomarkers »

Mesothelioma Chemotherapy with Avastin Helps Pain, Neuropathy

mesothelioma chemotherapy with Avastin

New evidence suggests that supplementing standard mesothelioma chemotherapy with Avastin (bevacizumab) may lead to less pain. It may also reduce the risk of another mesothelioma complication called peripheral neuropathy. That word comes from a newly-published study involving several French hospitals. The study is a follow-up to the French-led MAPS study from 2016. The MAPS study showed that performing mesothelioma chemotherapy with Avastin – in addition to the standard chemotherapy drugs – improved mesothelioma survival by 23 percent. Now it looks like the three-drug combination can also help mesothelioma patients live longer with fewer side effects. Mesothelioma Complications and Side Effects Avastin is a VEGF inhibitor. It works by preventing the formation of blood vessels that feed a growing tumor. The … Continue reading Mesothelioma Chemotherapy with Avastin Helps Pain, Neuropathy »

Adjuvant Radiotherapy Most Effective for Pleural Mesothelioma in Early Stages

adjuvant radiotherapy for esothelioma

New research shows adjuvant radiotherapy is most likely to help pleural mesothelioma patients in the early stages of the disease. By the time mesothelioma is at Stage III or Stage IV, adjuvant radiotherapy is unlikely to improve survival. Researchers at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Texas conducted the study on more than 2,500 pleural mesothelioma patients. Their results appear in the most recent issue of the Journal of Thoracic Disease. The study could help mesothelioma patients and doctors make more informed choices about their care. Defining the Stages of Pleural Mesothelioma The four stages of mesothelioma relate to the severity of the cancer and how far it has spread. In Stage I mesothelioma, the tumor is confined to the pleural … Continue reading Adjuvant Radiotherapy Most Effective for Pleural Mesothelioma in Early Stages »

Minimally Invasive Mesothelioma Diagnosis from Lung Fluid

minimally invasive mesothelioma diagnosis

Minimally invasive mesothelioma diagnosis with lung fluid may be just as effective as a tissue biopsy. That’s according to Australian mesothelioma researchers. Australia was once one of the biggest producers of asbestos and now has some of the highest mesothelioma rates in the world. It is also home to high-level mesothelioma research. In the latest study, scientists ran a meta-analysis comparing surgical biopsy with a minimally invasive mesothelioma diagnosis tool called cytology. Their conclusion is that surgery may not always be necessary to diagnose malignant mesothelioma. Tissue Versus Lung Fluid Malignant mesothelioma is a fatal cancer caused by exposure to asbestos. It is challenging to diagnose because the symptoms are often vague and similar to other less serious conditions. Doctors … Continue reading Minimally Invasive Mesothelioma Diagnosis from Lung Fluid »

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 »

Gel-Based Mesothelioma Treatment: A Novel Approach to Pleural Mesothelioma

gel-based mesothelioma treatment

Swiss scientists are developing a novel gel-based mesothelioma treatment for people with pleural disease. Early studies suggest it may be a safer way to deliver cancer-fighting drugs with fewer side effects. The gel-based mesothelioma treatment combines the chemotherapy drug cisplatin with a natural “glue” called fibrin. When the gel is applied during surgery, it can keep fighting tumors for months. Why Develop a Gel-Based Treatment? Cisplatin is a platinum-based drug. Together with pemetrexed (Alimta), it is one of the most common chemotherapy drugs for mesothelioma. In the past decade, doctors came up with a way to increase the effectiveness of cisplatin in people with peritoneal mesothelioma. These patients get chemotherapy the usual way. But they also get a rinse of … Continue reading Gel-Based Mesothelioma Treatment: A Novel Approach to Pleural Mesothelioma »

Systemic Inflammation Linked to Shorter Mesothelioma Survival

systemic inflammation

Mesothelioma patients whose bodies respond to the illness with systemic inflammation are less likely to survive. Chinese researchers have linked a measure of systemic inflammation called SII to shorter survival in people with pleural mesothelioma. The new study involved 97 people with confirmed malignant mesothelioma. It suggests that SII could be a simple, non-invasive way to determine mesothelioma prognosis. What is SII? SII stands for “systemic immune-inflammation index”. When a body is under stress, such as when it is fighting mesothelioma, the innate immune system kicks into action. Certain kinds of white blood cells and proteins are released. The result is systemic inflammation. SII can be determined with a blood test. The test measures the levels of white blood cells … Continue reading Systemic Inflammation Linked to Shorter Mesothelioma Survival »

Treating Advanced Peritoneal Mesothelioma with Spray-On Oxaliplatin

advanced peritoneal mesothelioma

European doctors have tested a new spray-on cancer drug that could be another treatment option for people with advanced peritoneal mesothelioma. The drug is oxaliplatin. It is sold under the brand name Eloxatin. It is normally given by injection into a vein. But that can cause serious side effects, including stomach pain. A new study published in the European Journal of Surgical Oncology suggests there may be a more effective way to get the benefits of oxaliplatin. Researchers found that using it as a spray for advanced peritoneal mesothelioma extended survival with fewer side effects. PIPAC for Advanced Peritoneal Mesothelioma As Surviving Mesothelioma first reported last spring, pressurized intraperitoneal aerosol chemotherapy (PIPAC) is a new way to deliver cancer medicines. … Continue reading Treating Advanced Peritoneal Mesothelioma with Spray-On Oxaliplatin »

Tumor Treating Fields Win FDA Approval for Mesothelioma Treatment

Tumor Treating Fields

The FDA has approved an electricity-based mesothelioma treatment known as Tumor Treating Fields (NovoTTF-100L). The treatment is approved for use along with standard mesothelioma chemotherapy. It is the first new treatment for pleural mesothelioma since the approval of Alimta (pemetrexed) in 2004. Approval of NovoTTF-100L was based on the promising results of the STELLAR phase 2 mesothelioma clinical trial. Those results, released in April, were even better than expected. Electricity is the Basis of Tumor Treating Fields The Tumor Treating Fields approach was created by Jersey-based Novocure. It first found success in the treatment of the deadly brain cancer glioblastoma. The technology uses electrical fields to destabilize critical proteins responsible for cell division. When these proteins cannot do their job, … Continue reading Tumor Treating Fields Win FDA Approval for Mesothelioma Treatment »

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