Like most other illnesses, the prognosis for mesothelioma is brightest with early detection and treatment. The biggest challenge in diagnosing mesothelioma, however, is the fact that symptoms may take as many as 40 years or more to develop. By the time a tumor is found, the prognosis for mesothelioma is often poor.
For patients with mesothelioma, prognosis and treatment options are initially determined by tumor staging.
Mesothelioma Prognosis: Tumor Staging
Doctors use tumor staging to rank the severity of mesothelioma based on the size and location of the tumor and whether or not it has spread locally, to the lymph nodes, or to other areas of the body. From Stage I tumors, which are often operable and therefore have the most positive mesothelioma prognosis, to advanced Stage IV tumors, whose outlook is poor, staging is the most accurate predictor of mesothelioma prognosis.
Mesothelioma Prognosis: Treatments
Mesothelioma treatments can lead to a more favorable mesothelioma prognosis. If you have mesothelioma, your doctor will recommend treatments based not only on tumor staging, but also your age, gender, and overall health.
While medical science has yet to yield a cure for mesothelioma, treatments can prolong life or improve quality of life by removing, shrinking, or stopping the growth of tumors. Surgery, for example, offers the best hope for prolonging survival. But some tumors cannot be surgically removed, and some patients are not well or strong enough to survive major surgery. In cases where surgical removal of a tumor is possible, surgery can improve the mesothelioma prognosis by adding years to a patient’s life.
Chemotherapy drugs may be used alone or in combination with other drugs or radiation therapy to destroy or stop the growth of cancer cells. Chemotherapy and radiation are associated with numerous side effects, however, and their effects on mesothelioma prognosis are not as promising as those achieved with surgery.
If you have mesothelioma, every treatment to improve your mesothelioma prognosis should be available to you. Sokolove Law’s lawyers can fight for the compensation you need to pay medical expenses and restore your financial security. Call 1-888-360-4215 to see if a a mesothelioma lawyer can help you today.