Mesothelioma Treatment in Bristol, VA
Malignant mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer affecting the mesothelial lining—the tissue that covers the majority of internal organs including the lungs—which most commonly manifests due to prolonged asbestos exposure. Asbestos exposure likely occurs in the workplace when working with asbestos materials or products such as insulation, flooring and roof shingles. When asbestos is broken up and turned to dust, the dust is inhaled or swallowed and occupies the lungs or stomach.
There are four different types of mesothelioma:
- Pleural Mesothelioma: As the most common form of mesothelioma which accounts for over 80% of cases, pleural mesothelioma affects the lining of the lungs and chest wall (known as the pleura).
- Peritoneal Mesothelioma: As the second most common form of mesothelioma, peritoneal mesothelioma occurs in the lining of the abdominal cavity (known as the peritoneum).
- Pericardial Mesothelioma: As one of the rarest forms of mesothelioma, pericardial mesothelioma affects the lining of the heart.
- Testicular Mesothelioma: Known as the other rare form of mesothelioma, testicular mesothelioma forms in the lining of the testicles.
Not all people exposed to asbestos will develop cancer, and mesothelioma can take over 20 years to ever develop after exposure to asbestos. While there is no cure, treatment options exist to improve symptoms and extend life expectancy.
To schedule a consultation with a qualified healthcare professional in Bristol that specializes in mesothelioma treatment, call (423) 482-8711 or contact AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center online.
Symptoms of Mesothelioma
Most symptoms of mesothelioma are experienced during the later stages (stage III and IV) and are dependent on the type of mesothelioma diagnosed in the individual. The most common mesothelioma symptoms include:
- Chest pain
- Painful coughing
- Shortness of breath (dyspnea)
- Fluid buildup (pleural effusion)
- Unexplained weight loss
- Abdominal pain or swelling
- Nausea or vomiting
- Changes in bowel habits
- Chest pain
- Irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia)
- Shortness of breath (dyspnea)
- Night sweats
- Fluid buildup in the scrotum (hydrocele)
- Testicular swelling or pain
- Lump inside the scrotum
Mesothelioma Diagnosis & Treatment
Early diagnosis and treatment of mesothelioma yields the best outcomes. To make an accurate mesothelioma diagnosis, your healthcare provider will likely utilize several tests including blood tests, imaging tests and biopsies.
If you are diagnosed with mesothelioma, there are three main treatments your healthcare provider may utilize alone or in combination:
- Chemotherapy: Cytotoxic drugs are utilized to destroy cancer cells. This treatment can be used in all cancer stages.
- Radiation therapy: Targeted radiation, delivered externally or through an internal source, kills cancer cells and shrinks mesothelioma tumors, making it easier for surgical removal. This treatment can be used in all cancer stages.
- Surgery: Early stages of mesothelioma can be treated with surgery to remove the tumor, the mesothelial lining or to decrease fluid buildup. This treatment path is not typically utilized in advanced stages or if cancer has spread.
Clinical trials are currently underway to uncover new, effective mesothelioma treatments. Targeted therapy, biological therapy immunotherapy and gene therapy are all potential future treatments not yet approved by the FDA.
In additional to the traditional cancer treatments listed above, your healthcare provider may utilize alternative and complementary therapies to treat the mind, body and traditional treatment side effects. These alternative treatments could include nutritional therapy, yoga or acupuncture.
Mesothelioma Prognosis & Life Expectancy
Your mesothelioma prognosis is dependent upon the cancer stage and your overall health, among other factors. Overall, unfortunately, the prognosis is poor, and the life expectancy is typically under a year due to the aggressive nature of the disease.
Early detection and treatment of mesothelioma is key. If you experience any symptoms related to mesothelioma, it is critical to meet with a healthcare provider who can diagnose mesothelioma, or determine if another condition is causing your symptoms.
Meet with a qualified healthcare professional in Bristol that can provide mesothelioma treatment. Call (423) 482-8711 or contact AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center online.
AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center
Address1604 Lamons Lane
Johnson City, TN 37604
9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Tue: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Wed: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Thu: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Fri: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm