Wednesday, May 28, 2008

What is Mesothelioma?

Mesothelioma is a form of cancer located in the lining of the lungs, abdomen or the heart. These linings are thin layers of tissue covering the organ.

The pleuron is the tissue covering the lungs and the wall of the chest cavity which cushions and protects the lungs. The peritoneum lines the abdominal wall and surrounds most of the organs in the abdomen. The pericardium is the tissue surrounding the heart.

Mesothelioma is a rare but very serious cancer. There are three types of mesothelioma based on the types of cancerous cells. The most common type is epithelioid and consists of 50-70% of total cases and has the best prognosis. The second type is called sarcomatoid, consists of 10-20 % of mesothelioma cases and is more unpredictable in nature. The third type of mesothelioma is called biphasic; it is a combination of the other two types and consists of 20-35% of all cases.

There are estimated 2000-3000 new cases of mesothelioma in the United States every year. The majority of these cases begin in the chest wall (pleural mesothelioma), a few start in the abdomen (peritoneal mesothelioma) and very rare are the cases starting in the lining surrounding the heart (pericardial mesothelioma).

The pleura are a thin lining of mesothelial cells. There are two pleura’s in the chest, the parietal pleura and the visceral pleura. The parietal pleura line the chest wall including the inside of the ribs, diaphragm and pericardium. The visceral pleura cover the lungs and filters fluid to and from the chest. If the pleura become diseases it is not effective at eliminating fluid from the chest resulting in pleural effusion or too much fluid in the chest.

Mesothelioma is usually the result of exposure to asbestos. Most people who are diagnosed with mesothelioma have had jobs where they breathed asbestos fibers. It may take up to 60 years from the time of asbestos exposure until mesothelioma develops.

Although rare, mesothelioma is a serious form of cancer which is often in its advanced stage when a diagnosis is made. In general, prognosis for mesothelioma patient is poor, however, some patients live with the disease for a long time. As mentioned earlier, the type of mesothelioma has an impact on the prognosis, as well as, the age of the patient, how much tumor has developed and if treatment is rendered. There are many variables in evaluating a mesothelioma case, so only the patient’s doctor can determine the best treatment and possible prognosis on an individual basis.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Mesothelioma is a type of cancer involving mesothelial tissues of body organs usually lungs or abdominal. It is often caused by exposure to asbestos. However, there are 30-50% of patients without any history of asbestos exposure. People who have received asbestos exposure of as little as one or two months to very low doses are at risk of mesothelioma cancer. Even people who wash clothes of asbestos exposed people are at risk. A person exposed to asbestos could develop mesothelioma after 50 years of exposure.

People in the occupations such as construction jobs in shipyards, insulators, boilermakers, etc. are at the risk of contracting asbestos disease.

The 2 common types of mesothelioma are:

Pleural mesothelioma (lung cancer) and peritoneal mesothelioma (abdomen organs). The survival time for a patient with diffuse malignant mesothelioma is from 4 to 24 months from the observance of the symptoms. Mesothelioma is also difficult to diagnose.

The chance of recovery for a patient with mesothelioma depends on size and location of the cancer, age of the patient and his response to the treatment. Presently, the treatment options for mesotheliomas are:

Radiation therapy, Chemotherapy, Surgery and Photodynamic therapy. There is some evidence that pro vitamin A or beta-carotene may decrease the risk of mesothelioma

Monday, May 26, 2008

Abstract: Malignant mesothelioma is a divesting, rare and deadly form of cancer, caused by exposure to asbestos. If you've lived under working conditions that exposed you to asbestos, or had a household member that worked near or with asbestos, you should bring this to the attention of a medical doctor and seek free legal counsel.

What is Mesothelioma?

Chances are you may never have heard of mesothelioma cancer unless you or a relative have the disease. Still considered as a rare cancer, it has been popularized by its linkage to asbestos.

Exactly what is mesothelioma cancer or malignant mesothelioma? Malignant mesothelioma is a deadly cancer of the mesothelium, or lining of the lung and chest cavity. However, it sometimes can be a deadly cancer of the peritoneum (the lining of the abdomen). It is almost always caused by exposure to asbestos, and is slow forming – often taking between 20-50 years to develop after exposure to asbestos.

Malignant Mesothelioma Symptoms

Symptoms of malignant mesothelioma in the lung and chest cavity are as follows:

- Shortness of breath

- Cough

- Weight Loss

- Chest Pain

Symptoms of malignant mesothelioma in the abdomen are as follows:

- Abdominal swelling and pain

- Weight Loss

Wondering How You Could Have Gotten Mesothelioma Cancer?

Several diseases are associated with exposure to asbestos. They include: malignant mesothelioma, asbestosis, pleural effusion, pleural plaques and thickening, and lung cancer.

Prior to 1975 asbestos fibers were commonly used. You could have been exposed to asbestos while working at any number of different industries. Chief among the possibilities would be jobs at asbestos mining and milling plants, shipyards, fireproofing and heating, construction, automotive repair, insulation, pipefitting and boiler making.

If you did not work in one of these industries or another that used asbestos, it is also possible that you could have been exposed if someone in your household worked with asbestos and carried asbestos fibers home on his or her clothing, hair or body. You may also have been exposed indirectly by living near asbestos mines.

Although it is true that most patients with malignant mesothelioma, lung cancer or other asbestos-related diseases likely had prolonged exposure to asbestos over a long period of time, it is also possible for one to develop one of these diseases from a brief exposure to asbestos.

The odds of developing lung cancer from smoking also increase significantly from exposure to asbestos. Although most people with lung cancer are told that their lung cancer was caused from smoking, if you or someone you know has lung cancer and also worked in an environment that gave you exposure to asbestos, it is highly recommended that you contact an attorney that specializes in handling mesothelioma and lung cancer cases caused by exposure to asbestos. The justice system has been very generous in its rewards to people who suffer diseases caused by asbestos exposure

Sunday, May 25, 2008

What is Mesothelioma? Mesothelioma is a rare type of cancer that grows on the mesothelium, the membrane or protective sac that surrounds the various organs of the body. It guards the organs by producing a special type of fluid to promote mobility of the organs. In the case of the lungs, mesothelium fluid allows ease in the movement when taking in air. Mesothelioma tumor can start on any area of the mesothelium which can be benign or cancerous. Known to be the cause of Mesothelioma is exposure to asbestos.

Asbestos is a heat resistant fibrous mineral used in the industry as the main material in making roofing, gasket compounds, floor tiles and patching compounds. Its versatility makes it a component of various products in the market but it is extremely dangerous once inhaled no matter how small the quantity may be. Inhaled asbestos fiber can pass through the air passages which can come in contact with linings of the lungs which can injure the cells and result to pleural Mesothelioma. Swallowed asbestos on the other hand can affect the fibers lined up on the abdominal cavity resulting to peritoneal mesothelioma. There are also evidences that link Mesothelioma with Thorotrast, a component used for X-rays but its usage has been stopped for a long time.

The symptoms and signs of Mesothelioma can be very common that is why the patient may just take it for granted. The symptoms may happen from two to three months before Mesothelioma is detected. Pleural Mesothelioma is the commonly occurring type which takes part in almost two thirds of the total detected Mesothelioma cases. The linings of the lungs and chest called pleura are the affected regions of Pleural Mesothelioma. Common signs are weight loss but not related with shift in diet, extreme tiredness, difficulty in swallowing, raspy or hoarse voice, constant shortness of breath, cough that have lasted for a long time, pain the chest or back, extreme sweating and recurring fever. For Peritoneal Mesothelioma, commonly affected organs of the body are bowel, liver and spleen with signs that are similar to bowel related diseases. Early symptoms include pain on the belly area, recurring constipation or diarrhea, increase in the waist area, nausea, vomiting, fever and even anemia. Anyone who encounters these symptoms that have been exposed to asbestos can better consult their doctor for diagnosis to prevent further Mesothelioma complicated problems.

Prevention of Mesothelioma can be best done by avoiding contact with asbestos which is proven to be its main causing agent. Asbestos is found almost everywhere may it be at home, at work or in any public buildings. Workers involved with it must take extra care and precautions to avoid contact through inhalation or swallowing. Low rates of Mesothelioma cases are detected for the past 20 years but nowadays, the number of affected individuals has been growing to a large degree. In United States almost 2,000 new cases are detected each year. It occurs mostly with men since they are commonly the ones involved in business and cases that involve the use of asbestos. Factory workers, miners, railroad laborers, gas mask makers, insulation workers and ship builders are the commonly asbestos related victims.

The patients or the individuals affected with Mesothelioma can file lawsuits against asbestos makers, manufacturers and employers since they have the duty to protect their workers from the negative effects of asbestos including Mesothelioma. Several law firms and lawyers are now available to help the sufferers fight for their right and to attain the justice that they deserve.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Imagine a disease that lays eggs inside your lungs. These eggs do not produce discomfort or coughing, they don't cause outbreaks or rashes or anything of the sort. In fact these eggs don't do anything except sit in your lungs and germinate for 30 to 40 years. After this time you begin to have a slight cough, a fever, maybe some cold sweats. You write it off as the flu and continue as usual until it goes away. 3 weeks later the flu is back but this time you're coughing up blood. You visit your doctor and hope he can prescribe something to kick this crazy flu. Your doctor runs a few tests and sends you home. A week later your brought into his office and he lays the devastating news on have Mesothelioma a cancer of the lungs.

This is the reality for roughly 2000 men and women residing here in the United States every year. These are people who often time have lead healthy lives. In the article, "Mesothelioma Victims - Survival Stories" Kathleen writes:

"At 42, I never thought that I would be facing a terminal illness, especially one relating to the lungs. I've never smoked and have leaded a relatively healthy life. I have two beautiful daughters who will be heading to college soon - and I may not be alive to see their graduation."

The primary cause of mesothelioma cancer is linked to exposure to asbestos fibers which are breathed into the lungs or swallowed. Asbestos is a material that was used heavily for many years in hundreds of products. Asbestos was primarily used due to the fact that it is strong, resists fire and corrosion, and has very effective properties for insulation.

In modern day, asbestos has many uses such as thermal pipe and boiler insulation, floor coverings, ceiling tiles, spray-applied fire proofing and sound proofing, roofing materials and "transit" pipe and sheeting. Though major public use was discontinued in the late 70s, asbestos continues to be a material used in countries outside of the U.S., and due to the fact that we trade for many of these countries goods it is necessary that we educate ourselves as to the materials used in production of the products and items we use daily.

Many more cases of mesothelioma, due to asbestos exposure, are beginning to surface today. First, because our understanding and ability to recognize the disease has increased by leaps and bounds over the years, and second, because this particular cancer lays dormant within the carriers system for 30 to 40 years. With the widespread use of asbestos during the 20th century we are starting to see the consequences of exposure to this toxic material.

Due to the fact that asbestos was in heavy concentration in the industrial and building trades during the mid 1900s, most carriers of mesothelioma cancer are men who where working around asbestos during that time. However, mesothelioma has been reported not only in cases of direct exposure, but also indirect, such as the families of these men, as they often returned home with asbestos fibers on their clothing. Even in today's day and age where asbestos has been all but removed from our lives, it is still possible to be diagnosed with mesothelioma as cases of this cancer have been diagnosed without the presence of asbestos exposure.

It is also important to note that smokers who have been exposed to asbestos carry a far greater risk of mesothelioma. Some figures suggest as much as 3 times the percentage of a non-smoker with the same level of exposure. If you feel that you have been exposed to asbestos set an appointment with your physician to go over your chances of mesothelioma developing. The best thing a mesothelioma patient can do is to detect the presence of this disease early on, as it will increase your chances considerably.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer in which malignant (cancerous) cells are found in the mesothelium, a protective sac that covers most of the body's internal organs. Most people who develop mesothelioma have worked on jobs where they inhaled asbestos particles.

In his article called Knee Deep in Asbestos - - freelance writer Phil Jones relates how when he was a teenager he worked for a brief time in asbestos mine in the Yukon. One of the features of daily life was the constant presence of asbestos dust in the air. As Jones writes,

"There were employees that worked in the mill whose sole job was to sweep up the dust that fell on the floor. There was so much of it that this was a constant ongoing job. The asbestos dust in the mill actually fell almost like snow and covered the floor completely. Without sweepers there would probably have been several inches of asbestos dust on the floor within an hour or so. In fact, I remember seeing sweepers go by pushing their wide brooms and the new dust settling onto the floor behind them as they walked."

This story illustrates a number of the more sinister aspects of the whole mesothelioma story.

First, over the course of many decades, countless workers were placed in work environments where they were exposed to high levels of asbestos fiber with little protection. Their exposure to asbestos fibers was constant and often took place over a very long period of time - in most cases, over many years.

Second, the owners and managers of these work places were often either unaware of the risk of mesothelioma, or they actively attempted to hide or cover up those risks.

Third, since the effects of exposure to asbestos fiber often do not become apparent for 30 or 40 years after prolonged exposure, there often appeared to be no immediate health risk in these work environments. This made it very difficult for workers or their representatives to make a convincing case that worker health was being sacrificed on the altar of corporate profits.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Cancers and other forms of diseases are usually named according to the part of the body or the internal organ where abnormal growth of malignant cells takes place. In the case of Mesothelioma, the abnormal cells grow in the mesothelium, a surface cell layer that covers and protects most internal organs. Normally, the mesothelium produces small amount of fluid in order to lubricate its layers—one of which directly covers the organ—and allow the movement of the organs, like the expansion and contraction of the lungs.

A Mesothelioma cancer patient’s mesothelium produces too much of this lubricating fluid, thereby damaging nearby tissues and organs. The most common form of mesothelioma is Pleural Mesothelioma, which begins in the Pleural or Peritoneum, the membrane that lines the chest cavity and covers the lungs.

About 2,000 cases of Mesothelioma have been noted yearly in United States. This is still a rare disease to consider, although the reported incidents have escalated in the past two decades. It has been observed and proven that heavy and long exposure to asbestos is the prime cause of Mesothelioma. Asbestos is a group of minerals in strong, flexible and fibrous form. It is used in industrial products such as cement, brake linings, textiles, electrical insulation, flooring products, chemical filters, fireproofing materials and others. This explains why most Mesothelioma patients are working in construction sites, shipyards and manufacturing companies of said industrial products. Small asbestos particles float in the air and are either inhaled or swallowed by workers or persons

within the vicinity. Aside from Mesothelioma, these people can acquire asbestosis, a non-cancerous chronic lung sickness and other forms of cancer of the lungs, cancer of the larynx and kidney.

Asbestos-related Mesothelioma comprise only 70 to 80 percent of the all the reported cases of the said cancer. There are reported Mesothelioma cases wherein the patients did not have any known exposure to asbestos. Some have been exposed only for a short period of time but still developed the cancer 20 to 50 years after the exposure, like in the case of a Mesothelioma cancer patient who only washed clothes that have been exposed to asbestos. Likewise, asbestos fibers that have been stuck in the hair strands of a factory worker can also risk the health of others whom he lives with. It is therefore important for workers exposed to asbestos to change their clothes and take a shower before leaving the workplace to prevent his family members or companions from inhaling the asbestos particles and thus, from acquiring Mesothelioma.

The Mesothelioma cancer is slow-forming. That’s why one develops the cancer so many years after the exposure to asbestos. Some develop the cancer fifty years after the exposure, which makes it hard to determine whether the person has Mesothelioma or not, especially when the patient has no knowledge of the exposure to asbestos. Moreover, malignant Mesothelioma shows signs similar to those of other ailments such as pneumonia.

Symptoms of Pleural Mesothelioma also evident in other illnesses include: shortness of breath, persistence of cough, weight loss and chest pain. Peritoneal Mesothelioma, which affects the abdominal cavity, is indicated by swelling of and pain in the abdomen, weight loss, bowel abstractions, anemia, blood clotting abnormalities and fever.

Complete physical examination is needed to make sure one has Mesothelioma cancer. This includes x-rays of the body part where the symptoms are felt or seen, CT scan and MRI. To confirm Mesothelioma, a biopsy is also performed by a surgeon or oncologist (a physician who is specializing in the diagnosis and treatment of a cancer). The sample tissue removed by the surgeon is examined by the pathologist. Once confirmed, the doctor then finds out the extent of the cancer, which is crucial to the treatment of Mesothelioma. Although malignant, Mesothelioma when earlier diagnosed can still be treated. Most Mesothelioma patients undergo surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Mesothelioma is a rare cancer that attacks the body's mesothelial cells around the organs. The mesothelium provides a protective membranous lining for the internal organs and allows moving organs (i.e. the heart and the lungs) to glide easily against adjacent structures. The names of the three regions of mesothelial cells that provide protective coating are 1) pleura, the sac which surrounds the lungs; 2) peritoneum, the lining which protects the abdominal cavity; and 3) pericardium, the sac which surrounds the heart. Three different types of mesothelioma cancer attack these three different regions.

Pleural mesothelioma: A type of lung cancer which attacks the pleura surrounding the lungs, this is the most common type of mesothelioma, affecting approximately two-thirds of all mesothelioma patients. Symptoms include hoarseness, fever, blood in sputum, swollen arms and face, coughing, loss of weight, difficulty breathing, chest pain, weak muscles, and reduced tactile sensitivity.

Peritoneal mesothelioma: A cancer of the abdomen which attacks the peritoneum lining the abdominal cavity. This affects approximately one-third of all mesothelioma patients. Symptoms include abdominal bloating, impaired bowl function, fever, swollen feet, and nausea.

Pericardial mesothelioma: This form of mesothelioma which attacks the pericardium surrounding the heart is extremely rare. Symptoms include chest pain, dyspnea, cough, and palpitations.

Mesothelioma has been linked to asbestos exposure. Asbestos is a type of building material used in thermal insulation products and ceiling tiles. In the United States, asbestos usage peaked during the 1950s - 1970s. During the late 1960s, concerns over the health consequences of asbestos exposure began to arise, thereby decreasing the amount of asbestos manufactured in next two decades. By the 1980s, a new industry of asbestos abatement began to flourish. But according to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as many as 733,000 schools and public buildings still contain asbestos.

Small asbestos fibers that enter the air do not evaporate and can remain suspended in the air for a long time. These fibers, when breathed into the body, are toxic. There are three types of asbestos exposure.

Occupational asbestos exposure: People working in factories that manufacturer asbestos are likely to have a high exposure to asbestos and are most at risk of developing asbestosis or mesothelioma.

Para occupational asbestos exposure: Family members of workers exposed to asbestos in the workplace are susceptible to exposure from asbestos dust brought home by the worker on his clothes or skin.

Neighborhood asbestos exposure: Those who live in the vicinity of an asbestos manufacturing plant are also at risk.

Mesothelioma is still a relatively rare form of cancer. There are estimated 2,000 - 3,000 new cases per year in the United States. Approximately 7-13 per one million male patients with a history of asbestos exposure contract mesothelioma. Diagnosis usually occurs 20-40 years after initial exposure to asbestos.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with, or thinks that they might have Mesothelioma Cancer, it is often daunting and can be difficult to know where to seek help. However, you are not alone; there are organizations and doctors who can help.

With the current research and new knowledge about Mesothelioma Cancer, seeking help has become easier, as there are now established support organizations and more knowledgeable doctors who can help you, your friend, or your family.

In most Mesothelioma Cancer cases, the disease has developed as a result of exposure to an Asbestos related substance. In most cases people who develop Mesothelioma Cancer worked directly with an asbestos related substance, or were exposed to an Asbestos related substance, over a long period of time, in their place of work.

Early intervention provides sufferers of Mesothelioma Cancer their best chance of survival, following appropriate treatment. This is why it is important that if you, or someone you know, are experiencing the effects of Mesothelioma Cancer, you should seek help.

Some of the types of symptoms that you should be looking for include, coughing, breathlessness, chest pain, abdominal pain and fatigue and immune deficiency related illnesses, such as colds.

If you think you have any of these symptoms, you should make an appointment you’re your local GP and seek a referral to a Mesothelioma Cancer Specialist. If you are then diagnosed with Mesothelioma Cancer you might then consider contacting a Mesothelioma Attorney, or Lawyer.

Some of the support organizations that you might consider contacting include, the American Cancer Society, who can provide information about other support networks in your area.

If you, or someone you know, have been diagnosed with Mesothelioma Cancer, there is no need to suffer in silence, as there are many positive steps you can take towards securing your future; there is always help to be found.

Currently, there are new treatments for Mesothelioma being discovered and implemented and through greater knowledge and early intervention; these new treatments are proving to be effective.

Of course, being diagnosed with Mesothelioma Cancer can be a difficult time for both you and your family; however, there are many Cancer support agencies that also offer support to the families of Cancer victims.

Research has shown that early intervention and treatment of Mesothelioma Cancer has helped many patients live up to 7 years beyond their expected survival rate, without seeking help and undergoing treatment.

So, we encourage you to take the time to seek help if you have been exposed to, or diagnosed with Mesothelioma Cancer. It will be a positive step towards saving your own life, or that of another.

Monday, May 19, 2008

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma or another asbestos related cancer, you may want to seek legal advice. Typical legal settlements can reach five million dollars.

Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer in which malignant (cancerous) cells are found in the mesothelium, a protective sac that covers most of the body's internal organs. Most people who develop mesothelioma have worked on jobs where they inhaled asbestos particles.

What is the mesothelium?

The mesothelium is a membrane that covers and protects most of the internal organs of the body. It is composed of two layers of cells: One layer immediately surrounds the organ; the other forms a sac around it. The mesothelium produces a lubricating fluid that is released between these layers, allowing moving organs (such as the beating heart and the expanding and contracting lungs) to glide easily against adjacent structures.

The mesothelium has different names, depending on its location in the body. The peritoneum is the mesothelial tissue that covers most of the organs in the abdominal cavity. The pleuron is the membrane that surrounds the lungs and lines the wall of the chest cavity. The pericardium covers and protects the heart. The mesothelial tissue surrounding the male internal reproductive organs is called the tunica vaginalis testis. The tunica serosa uteri cover the internal reproductive organs in women.

What is mesothelioma?

Mesothelioma (cancer of the mesothelium) is a disease in which cells of the mesothelium become abnormal and divide without control or order. They can invade and damage nearby tissues and organs. Cancer cells can also metastasize (spread) from their original site to other parts of the body. Most cases of mesothelioma begin in the pleura or peritoneum.

How common is mesothelioma?

Although reported incidence rates have increased in the past 20 years, mesothelioma is still a relatively rare cancer. About 2,000 new cases of mesothelioma are diagnosed in the United States each year. Mesothelioma occurs more often in men than in women and risk increases with age, but this disease can appear in either men or women at any age.

What are the risk factors for mesothelioma?

Working with asbestos is the major risk factor for mesothelioma. A history of asbestos exposure at work is reported in about 70 percent to 80 percent of all cases. However, mesothelioma has been reported in some individuals without any known exposure to asbestos.

Asbestos is the name of a group of minerals that occur naturally as masses of strong, flexible fibers that can be separated into thin threads and woven. Asbestos has been widely used in many industrial products, including cement, brake linings, roof shingles, flooring products, textiles, and insulation. If tiny asbestos particles float in the air, especially during the manufacturing process, they may be inhaled or swallowed, and can cause serious health problems. In addition to mesothelioma, exposure to asbestos increases the risk of lung cancer, asbestosis (a no cancerous, chronic lung ailment), and other cancers, such as those of the larynx and kidney.

Smoking does not appear to increase the risk of mesothelioma. However, the combination of smoking and asbestos exposure significantly increases a person's risk of developing cancer of the air passageways in the lung.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Asbestos is used in over 3000 modern products and most people have suffered at least some degree of exposure to it at one point or another. Most asbestos exposure is limited to minute portions of well maintained building materials such as concrete, insulation and siding. Regular maintenance of these materials is important for preventing asbestos from degenerating into airborne fibers. Unfortunately, because asbestos is so widespread, it is impossible to compute the damage that even a small quantity can cause.

The lightweight nature of the asbestos particle facilitates airborne spreading of these deadly carcinogens. This is why most asbestos-related diseases affect the respiratory system. These are incurable diseases. Even tiny amounts of asbestos can inflict irreversible damage as symptoms usually only emerge 20 to 30 years down the road.

Mesothelioma, Asbestosis and lung cancer are consequences of prolonged asbestos exposure. Any contact with asbestos merits immediate medical consultation because treatment options and survival rates are greatly improved the earlier they’re detected. Unfortunately most asbestos-related conditions don’t show symptoms until the disease is terminally advanced. Most patients diagnosed with an asbestos-related condition rarely survive more than 18 months after diagnosis.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Mesothelioma injury can be classified into three main groups, Pleural (chest), Peritoneal (abdominal) and Pericardial (heart). All three types of Mesothelioma injury are mainly cause through exposure to an Asbestos related substance.

Mesothelioma injury arises when the Mesothelioma cells surrounding the lungs, heart, or abdominal organs become cancerous. The Mesothelioma cells change to form nodules, which can then clump together to form a tumor, or tumors around the organ.

In more extreme cases of Mesothelioma Cancer, the Mesothelioma tumor can break through the walls of the organs that it surrounds and cause internal damage to the organ. Also, in some cases the Cancer can travel through the blood stream and affect other organs, not directly surrounded by the original Mesothelioma Cancerous Cells.

The origins of Mesothelioma injury begin when a person is exposed to an asbestos related substance. The person either inhales the Asbestos fibers, or the fibers enter the skin. These fibers either lodge in the lungs, or travel through the body and affect the heart, or abdominal organs.

The bodies’ natural defense system will attempt to eradicate the fibers from the body, through attempts to expel the fibers. However, some fibers will become lodged in the Mesothelioma cell layers that provide a protective layer around the lungs, heart and abdominal area.

Over time, the Mesothelioma cells surrounding the fibers, can change consistency and become cancerous. It is at this stage that the Mesothelioma injury begins to occur, as it turns into Mesothelioma.

However, Mesothelioma injury also includes the conditional affects that occur as a result of having Mesothelioma Cancer. Some of these conditional affects include, immune deficiency, which can lead to a slow break down of the bodies defense system.

Once the bodies defense system begins to break down the body can become subject to colds and other such illnesses. The overall affects of having Mesothelioma Cancer can lead to an array of Mesothelioma injuries and has the potential to cause major organ failure.

In order to prevent the adverse affects of Mesothelioma injury, Mesothelioma doctors have been implementing various treatments that aim to prevent further damage. Some of these treatments include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy and immune augmentative therapy.

In regard to Mesothelioma Cancer, Surgery aims to remove the Cancerous Mesothelioma cells, while chemotherapy uses drugs to kill the Cancerous cells. Radiation therapy also aims to eliminate the Mesothelioma cells, while immune augmentative therapy aims to restore the body’s natural immune system to a level in which it can be effective in helping to fight the effects of Mesothelioma Cancer.

All of these treatment methods are aimed at preventing further Mesothelioma injury to the patient. If you, or someone you know, have been diagnosed with Mesothelioma Cancer, ensure that you seek immediate treatment to prevent the affects of Mesothelioma Cancer and to avoid further Mesothelioma injury.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

At some point during our childhood we have all been told to eat our vegetables. Forcing down tasteless green beans and Brussels sprouts were supposed to make us taller and stronger. Well, so it is for mesothelioma patients. Diet is often an overlooked subject for cancer patients, but eating the right nutritional foods for strength and energy is just as important as taking the proper medication.

Mesothelioma patients undergoing treatment must follow a special cancer diet devised by their nutritionists. Cancer diets involve eating the correct amounts of protein and calories as well as drinking the right amount of water to keep the ailing body replenished and energized. The body needs plenty of nourishment when it is going through chemotherapy or even when the patient is taking certain medications.

Doctors and nutritionists may also recommend a special cancer diet because many mesothelioma patients tend to lose their appetites due to worry over their condition. Also, those who are undergoing treatment may choose not to eat because of the unpleasant side effects they may experience. Chemotherapy, for example, and even some particular medications may cause an imbalance of nutrients that must be corrected in order to keep the body as strong as possible and to keep the patient from losing an excessive amount of weight. Other side effects of mesothelioma treatment include nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, a change in the sense of smell or taste, and/or constipation.

Below are some of the important nutrients patients are encouraged to include in their mesothelioma diet:

Protein is important for any cancer patient because it helps repair tissue damaged by surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation. Protein also helps maintain a strong and healthy immune system, lowering a mesothelioma patient’s risk of infection after aggressive cancer treatments. The National Cancer Institute recommends increasing protein in a cancer diet with cheese, milk, ice cream, yoghurt, eggs, nuts, peanut butter, meats and fish.

Fats are an essential part of the cancer diet because they supply the body with the necessary energy it needs while undergoing treatment. The amount of fats (meaning the number of calories) a cancer diet should consist of is dependent on a mesothelioma patient’s age and body size. The National Cancer Institute recommends increasing caloric intake with such foods as butter, milk, cheese, honey, sugar, granola and dried fruits.

Water is another essential element of the cancer diet. Without a substantial amount of water, the body will dehydrate. It is important that anyone undergoing cancer treatment receive enough water to keep their bodies hydrated and replenished.

The details of every patient’s mesothelioma diet will vary. Some patients will need to incorporate more fat into their diets, while others may need more protein. It is important that patients devise a cancer diet under the guidance of their doctor and nutritionist to ensure that they receive the proper amount of nutrients to improve their quality of life.

Friday, May 9, 2008

There’s a silent killer out there. It creeps up on its victims, attacks them quietly and unsuspectingly, and initiates a wound that develops over many years before it eventually causes pain. This unstoppable murderer is known as mesothelioma.

Mesothelioma is a malignant tumor that develops on the mesothelial cells of either the lungs, heart or abdominal organs, and plagues those who have been exposed to asbestos for a prolonged period of time. Many who fall victim to this disease are people who have worked in specific trades or fields prior to the 1970s, such as blacksmiths, electricians, millwrights, and oil refinery workers.

Since it can take up to forty years for symptoms to surface, mesothelioma-related deaths are higher than ever in the 21st century. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state that 1,493 people died from asbestos in 2000, compared to 77 people in 1968.

Mesothelioma treatment methods differ depending on the stage of the cancer upon detection, as well as the patient’s age and personal choice of treatment. The four distinct stages of the disease are a factor in determining the type of mesothelioma treatment that can be carried out. The first stage is when the tumor has had limited growth on the pleural lining (the lining of the lungs). At this stage, an attempt can be made to surgically remove the entire tumor. However, if the tumor is detected at a later stage when it has invaded surrounding areas, it is considered incurable.

Traditionally, the later stages of mesothelioma have been treated with either chemotherapy or radiation therapy. Chemotherapy uses drugs to kill cancer cells while radiation therapy uses high-energy x-rays to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors.

Although mesothelioma treatment methods have been proven to prolong patients’ lives, they cannot cure the disease. Ongoing clinical trials are dedicated to overcoming this debilitating illness. Current experimental treatments include the following:

Drug Therapy: A drug called Alimta, developed by Eli Lilly, has been shown to significantly increase the life expectancy of patients and decrease symptoms of the disease. It is the only chemotherapy drug to be approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma.

Gene Therapy: This mesothelioma treatment is currently in the experimental stages. The process involves inserting a "suicide gene" directly into the tumor. This gene makes the cells sensitive to a normally ineffective drug called glanciclovir which destroys all the cancer cells and leaves the healthy cells unharmed.

Photodynamic Therapy: Still in its experimental stage, photodynamic therapy uses light to kill cancerous cells. The patient first receives a photo sensitizer that only collects in cancerous cells. Fiber optic cables are then placed in the body in order to focus the right frequency of light on the tumor. The photosensitizer is then caused to produce a toxic oxygen molecule that kills the cancer cell.

Immunotherapy: Also referred to as biological therapy, this mesothelioma treatment uses the body's personal immune system to defend itself against mesothelioma. It has been discovered that the immune system is capable of deciphering healthy cells from cancerous cells, and can thus eradicate those cells that cause cancer.

While treatment methods are still in the developmental or experimental stages, there is hope that one day all mesothelioma victims will be freed from the murderous hands of this fearsome disease.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Mesothelioma Cancer is considered, within the medical profession, to be a serious illness. Mesothelioma Doctors are now available to those who are sufferers of Mesothelioma Cancer.

Mesothelioma Doctors are well educated in the cause of Mesothelioma Cancer, diagnosis of Mesothelioma Cancer, the affects of Mesothelioma Cancer and the available treatment for Mesothelioma Cancer.

Therefore, when choosing a Mesothelioma Doctor, ensure that they have expertise or quality experience in the area of Mesothelioma Cancer. This can be achieved through your general GP’s general enquiries on your behalf, or through conducting your own research.

You might even consider making enquiries with the American Cancer Society, who hold a variety of information about different types of Cancer and where to seek help. When seeking help it is best to research all your available options and then choose the best one for you.

Some of the important information that you might need to tell your Mesothelioma Doctor include, what types of symptoms you are experiencing, how long ago since you were exposure to an Asbestos related substance and for how long where you exposed to the Asbestos related substance.

After you receive and initial consultation from your Mesothelioma Doctor, you may be required to undergo either a Chest CT scan, or a biopsy, depending on which type of Mesothelioma Cancer your Mesothelioma Doctor considers that you have.

Essentially, there are three possible types of Mesothelioma Cancer that you could have. These include, Pleural (Lungs) Mesothelioma Cancer, Peritoneal (abdominal) and Pericardial (heart).

Once your Mesothelioma Cancer doctor has made a definitive diagnosis, he/she will then be able to tell you which type of Mesothelioma Cancer you have, at what stage the Mesothelioma Cancer is, whether it has spread to surrounding organs, or whether it is contained within the original area of the diseases initiation.

Your Mesothelioma doctor will then discuss your treatment options in relation to the type of Mesothelioma Cancer that you have and what stage the Cancer is at. Your Mesothelioma Doctor should explain these options in detail, including any side affects and the recovery period.

Your Mesothelioma Doctor should also explain to you what the results of not undergoing these recommended treatment options could be. Essentially, your Mesothelioma Doctor should give you a detailed explanation of your entire prognosis.

Your prognosis should include details regarding any risks that you may be subjected to, the chances of the Cancer reoccurring following treatment and how long you are expected to survive once treatment has been implemented.

Keep in mind that through ongoing research into Mesothelioma Cancer, treatments are becoming more effective and patients diagnosed with Mesothelioma Cancer, who undergo treatment, are surviving for longer periods of time.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Recent study of U.S. government provides the latest evidence of a systematic cover-up of the health toll from pollution after the 9/11 disaster, which doctors fear will cause more deaths than the attacks themselves.

Belfast Telegraph says, The Bush administration suppressed evidence of increasing danger and officially announced that the air around the felled buildings was "safe to breathe".

But results of the government study, conducted by a consortium of researchers at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, Columbia University, New York University, Johns Hopkins University, The University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, and the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, show exposure-related increases in new-onset cough, wheeze, shortness of breath, and bronchial hyper reactivity more than 2½ years after the disaster.

Ambient air samples showed that asbestos levels in the WTC area were initially elevated following the September 11 attacks, but fell to within federal standards after the first few days.

"More research is needed to determine whether long-term exposure to asbestos fibers might lead to an increased risk of lung mesothelioma, a rare cancer that has been linked to asbestos exposure," said Landrigan. "Previous studies have shown the short chrysotile fibers found in the WTC dust to be the predominant fiber in lung mesothelioma tissue."

It is important to note that symptoms of mesothelioma may not appear until 30-50 years after exposure to asbestos.

Often symptoms of pleural mesothelioma are: shortness of breath, pain in the chest

Peritoneal mesothelioma symptoms include: weight loss, abdominal pain, swelling, bowel obstruction, blood clotting, anemia, fever.

If the cancer has spread beyond the mesothelium to other parts of the body, symptoms may include pain, trouble swallowing, or swelling of the neck or face.

It is very important to see a doctor about any of these symptoms. Only a doctor can make a diagnosis.

Medical Report