Monday, December 19, 2016

Treat Mesothelioma Guest Post

How to Improve Prognosis for Stage 4 Mesothelioma At stage 4, mesothelioma has reached its most advanced level. Typically, by the time mesothelioma cancer reaches the 4th stage, the cancer cells have already begun to spread to distant organs like the kidneys, liver, and heart via the lymphatic system and this spread causes new tumors to develop on the tissue lining of those organs (known as the mesothelium). Although stage 4 mesothelioma may not be considered curable, there are procedures and medications that can be used to improve a patient’s prognosis while reducing the severity of their symptoms. Diagnosis At stage 4 mesothelioma cancer has already metastasized. Cancer cells have already begun to divide and produce tumors in the distant parts of the patient’s body. Its symptoms are more severe, persistent, and significant. Any palliative care is usually given to reduce the symptoms while improving the quality of life of the patient. Although several treatments can be used in stage 4 mesothelioma patients, none of them are aimed at treating or curing the disease. They are aimed at relieving severe symptoms and pain. Symptoms of stage 4 mesothelioma In some cases, symptoms of mesothelioma are not diagnosed until the disease reaches stage 4. This can be attributed to the fact that latency time for mesothelioma can be up to 50 years. Additionally, symptoms can emerge slowly while mimicking those of other conditions until they become severe. Nevertheless, stage 4 mesothelioma has specific and severe symptoms. These include:  Weight loss  Fever  Lethargy  Dyspnea  Persistent and severe cough  Severe abdominal, testicular or chest pain  Swelling of the scrotum or abdomen  Cancer symptoms in other organs  Organ failure symptoms Ways to Improve a Mesothelioma Prognosis Since the mesothelioma at this point has indeed metastasized, it has a very poor prognosis. The average life expectancy of stage 4 mesothelioma patients is only 6 months. Nevertheless, there are cases where patients get incorrect staging despite the initial prognosis being poor. That’s why it is always important to get a second opinion. This ensures that patients do not dismiss curative procedures as inappropriate. Consultation or treatment from an experienced mesothelioma specialist will give the patient the most accurate diagnosis and information. Although most doctors do not usually recommend surgery for treating stage 4 mesothelioma, there are other ways of improving a patient’s stage 4 mesothelioma prognosis. Please watch the following video as it explains and touches on all topics concerning mesothelioma life expectancy and prognosis: 

Treatment Options To Improve A Patient’s Life Expectancy These are basically treatments that aim at keeping mesothelioma under control while relieving symptoms. In most cases, removal of the fluid that builds up close to the primary tumor is the procedure that is used to improve the prognosis. This procedure has varying names depending on the cancer and tumor location:  Paracentesis: This entails draining fluid from the abdominal area and is performed when the patient has peritoneal mesothelioma.  Thoracentensis: This involves draining fluid from the patient’s chest / lungs and is performed when the patient has pleural mesothelioma.  Pericardiocentesis: This entails draining fluid from the area that surrounds the patient’s heart and is performed when the patient has pericardial mesothelioma. This fluid is drained through the insertion of a thin, hollow needle that collects fluid from the affected area. Bothersome symptoms are usually alleviated with this procedure though the relief is usually temporary. In addition to these procedures, getting palliative or supportive care improves prognosis as well. Oxygen therapy, pain medications, coupled with any alternative therapies for mesothelioma can do wonders for improving a patient’s quality of life. When it comes down to it, remember to always consult with a MESOTHELIOMA SPECIALIST. Yes, that is in ALL CAPS for a reason. A family doctor or general oncologist should simply not be in charge of your treatment plan as they do not have the training or knowledge to understand what treatments are best for you. Getting the care from an experienced mesothelioma specialist is perhaps your best foot forward to obtaining the absolute best treatment plan possible for your condition.


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