Life Expectancy For Stage 1 Mesothelioma
Mesothelioma, just like any other cancer type, is basically incurable. The various treatments available are aimed at slowing down the progression of the disease thereby prolonging the lifespan of the patient as well as improving his or her quality of life at the same time. Once the diagnosis of mesothelioma has been made, the resulting prognosis may vary considerably depending on the stage and severity of the cancer.
Mesothelioma occurs in 4 stages. On a general level, once the diagnosis of mesothelioma is made, the resulting mesothelioma prognosis (chance of survival) is usually not good in most cases. The only real condition that may enhance a favorable prognosis is an early diagnosis. If the cancer is a stage-1 cancer (which is usually pretty rare), then corrective surgery may be possible. To determine the stage of mesothelioma, the internationally recognized TNM system is used
The TNM System
The system focuses on three principal factors considered most important in discovering the level of the patient’s cancer:
- T (TUMOR): This seeks to locate the size of the tumor and its location.
- N (NODES): This seeks to discover if the cancer has successfully spread to nearby lymph nodes and if so, to discover the extent of the spread.
- M (METASTASIS): This seeks to discover if the cancer has successfully spread (metastasized) to other nearby body organs and if so, what the extent of the spread is.
So, in testing for mesothelioma, the tests are centered around these three parameters. The results obtained individually from each of the parameters are then combined to determine the stage of the cancer (i.e. stage 1, 2, 3 or 4).
Each of the parameters have varying levels of severity and this is denoted by a number that is attached to the letter. For instance, the Tumor (T) can occur as T1, T2, T3 or T4. This simply means T1 is the mild stage of tumor growth while T4 is the most severe. Nodes (N) occurs as N0, N1, N2 and N3, while Metastasis (M) occurs as M0 (no spread to other body organs) or M1 (spread has occurred to other organs and parts).
Stage 1 Mesothelioma
Stage 1 mesothelioma features T1, N0 and M0. This simply means that the cancer has commenced growth in the lining of the chest wall but has yet to spread to the lymph nodes (N0) or to other distant parts (M0). Stage 1 may occur as stage 1A or 1B. Stage-1 usually gets the best prognosis, compared to the other stages. Due to the fact that the lymph nodes and distant body parts are yet to be affected, then the chances of successful treatment rise considerably.
Mesothelioma Life Expectancy: Stage 1
The general life expectancy for stage 1 mesothelioma is around 24-38 months. Although some live much longer than this (sometimes above 5 years), and some live much less (less than 12 months), the range presented above is the most common for patients who begin appropriate treatment promptly.
Conclusion – Final Thoughts
Early detection is usually the key to prolonging the lives of mesothelioma patients, so if you are experiencing some symptoms of the disease, please do not hesitate to get checked out.