What is pleural mesothelioma?
Pleural mesothelioma is a very rare cancerous lump that grows in the pleura or peritoneum. It begins in the mesothelial cells.
The pleura is a blanket that encircles not only the lungs (the bronchi) but also the wall within the rib cage. This tumor particularly attacks men who are over the age of 50.
What are the clinical signs and symptoms of this cancer?
The symptoms are mainly respiratory; they are attached to the growth of the tumor (which will compress the lungs). The main and the most frequent signs are as follows:
- Chest or back pain
- Shortness of breath
- Weight loss
- Night sweats
- Lateral chest pain
What are the causes?
Inhalation of asbestos fibers is the main known cause of pleural mesothelioma. We do not forget the natural and industrial fibers such as ceramics, and the simian virus 40. Other genetic causes appear, mainly the loss of BAP1 expression or also the BRCA1-associated protein. Smoking is a cause of mesothelioma.
What are the treatments?
Different types of physicians in Turkey often work together to create a comprehensive cancer treatment plan for patients combining different types of therapy.
There are two kinds of surgeries in Turkey:
- Pleurectomy decortication involves the removal of the pleura.
- Extrapleural pneumonectomy involves the eradication of the pleura, lungs, pericardium, and part of the diaphragm. The pericardium and the diaphragm are subsequently reconstructed with special material.
The hospitalization time is between 14 and 21 days. It takes longer in case of complications. According to the doctor's advice, chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy will be used.
Treatment with chemotherapy
Then, the patient will follow chemotherapy sessions, during which a mixture of cisplatin and pemetrexed would be mixed and injected. These drugs are known for their anti-cancer effect.
Regarding radiotherapy, doctors use rays to destroy the cancerous tumor. They use them for the treatment of mesothelioma.
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