Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Mesothelioma Cancer-Types and Treatments

Mesothelioma is particular type of disease which affects the mesothelium tissue that is affects the membranes of different organs in the human body. There are several types of mesothelioma cancer like pericardial mesothelioma, peritoneal mesothelioma, pleural mesothelioma etc. The general reason of this disease is prolonged exposure to asbestos which is quite obvious in some occupations and workplaces like asbestos sheet manufacturing, glass factories, construction sites, shipyards, steel plants etc. It is a proven fact that the microscopic fibers of asbestos enter the workers’ body through their digestive system and damage the internal mesothelium substantially giving rise to the mesothelioma cancer.

Three Major Types of Mesothelioma Cancer

The commonest form of mesothelioma cancer is pleural cancer that attacks the membrane covering the lungs. This is not a type of lung cancer but can affect the pother organs of the body including the lungs. Pleural mesothelioma can show up in symptoms like excessive coughing, acute chest pain, breathing problems etc. Thickening of pleura and pleural effusion are two of the internal conditions that develop in this mesothelioma cancer. Peritoneal mesothelioma is another type of mesothelioma cancer which crop up in the peritoneal lining at the abdominal region which manifests in swelling abdomen, accumulation of fluid, weight loss and intense pain. The other one is the rarest of the three known as pericardial mesothelioma. This is the one that affects the membrane of the heart and results in palpitation and weakness along with the other common symptoms.

Treatment of Mesothelioma Cancer

As this is a common fact that there has been no medicine invented that can cure cancer completely. The initial tests that are conducted to identify the affected areas and the type of mesothelioma cancer the patient is suffering from are CT scan and X-ray. After that, biopsy is performed to ensure the malignancy of the cancerous cells. The general modes of treatment are surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy which are often found to be of no help. There are palliative treatments available which can provide the patient with some relief from the acute pain he is going through. In the recent days the patients are being treated with multimodal procedure which is an effective combination of the there conventional modes.

Expense and Success Rate of The Treatment

The treatments of mesothelioma cancer are very expensive. The success rate is substantially low. It is pretty tough for the patient’s family to bear the costly treatments like chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Approximately 5 to 10% of the mesothelioma cancer patients survive more than 3 or 5 years. It is partially curable if detected at the earlier stage which happens rarely. But the mesothelioma cancer sufferers can claim compensation from their employers.