Is an asbestos-related cancer that attacks the two linings which surround the lungs and the chest cavity. These linings are known as the pleura, which cushions and protects the lungs while you breathe in and out. Pleural Mesothelioma is the most common type of mesothelioma as it accounts for 3 out of 4 (75%) of all mesothelioma diagnoses. The reason for this is because the tiny asbestos fibers are more easily inhaled in comparison to being ingested (which leads to the other forms of mesothelioma). Once inhaled, the small asbestos fibers become lodged into the pleura and with these fibers now present, they disrupt the natural cell growth within the pleura.
Pleural mesothelioma is often difficult to detect and currently a CT scan of the chest is the best way for assessing how far the disease has progressed. Many cancers are diagnosed by serum markers, however, mesothelioma cannot be diagnosed this way as currently no serum markers exist.
Pleural Mesothelioma Symptoms
Symptoms of pleural mesothelioma
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain
- Unexplained weight loss
- Persistent cough
- Hoarse voice
- Difficulty swallowing
- Changes in shape of fingers/nails
Advanced Stages Of Mesothelioma Symptoms
- Nerve problems
- Bone pain
- Horner’s syndrome
- Nerve problems in the arm
The 4 Stages Of Pleural Mesothelioma
Pleural Mesothelioma Stages
Stage 1 Pleural Mesothelioma
Stage 2 Pleural Mesothelioma
Stage 3 Pleural Mesothelioma
Stage 4 Pleural Mesothelioma
Pleural mesothelioma, pericardial, peritoneal and testicular mesotheliomas do not share a universal staging system. These diagnoses are rare and there are not enough cases to accurately describe them using stages.
Patients diagnosed with peritoneal or pericardial mesothelioma are usually categorized as having localized or advanced mesothelioma. A doctor with experience treating mesothelioma can determine how far the cancer has spread and what treatment options will work best.
Learn More About The 4 Stages Of Mesothelioma.
Traditional Pleural Mesothelioma Treatment Options
Surgery Options For Pleural Mesothelioma
Surgery to remove the mesothelial lining of the lung and chest cavity.
A procedure that uses drugs or chemicals in order to make a scar between the layers of the pleura. Fluid is drained from the space first with a chest tube, then the chemical is put into that space. The subsequent scarring will stop the buildup of fluid inside the pleural cavity.
Surgery that removes a whole lung and some of the lining of the diaphragm, chest and the sac that is around the heart.
Surgery to remove all or part of a lung.
Also known as pleuroscopy, this is a procedure where a thoracoscope is introduced through a tiny incision in the chest. Through other small incision, an endoscope is inserted to obtain internal images and videos. When surgeons perform thoracoscopy to aid another surgery, it is termed as video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery or VATS.
This is an extensive surgical procedure that exposes the patients’ lungs, heart, diaphragm, and trachea to the doctor. It is a 4 to 10-inch long incision made on any side of the chest. It helps the doctor to perform wedge resection, lobectomy, pneumonectomy, segmentectomy, extrapleural pneumonectomy and pleurectomy/decortication like major surgical treatments to manage the lung cancer.
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- European Journal of Cardiothoracic. Surgery., May 1, 2011; 39(5): 800 – 800.
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- Ismail-Khan, Roohi. Robinson, Lary D. Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma: A Comprehensive Overview. Cancer Control: Journal of the Moffit Cancer Center. 2006; 13(4):255-263.
- O’Bryne, K and Rusch V. (2006). Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma New York.
- Mesothelioma Symptoms. Mayo Clinic. Retrieved From: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/mesothelioma/DS00779/DSECTION=symptoms.
- Diagnosing and Treating Mesothelioma. American Lung Association. Retrieved From: http://www.lung.org/lung-health-and-diseases/lung-disease-lookup/mesothelioma/diagnosing-treating-mesothelioma.html.
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