Peritoneal Mesothelioma Treatment
What is Peritoneal Mesothelioma?
Peritoneal Mesothelioma is a unique form of cancer, which occurs in the lining of the stomach and abdominal cavity. This is called Peritoneal Mesothelioma because; it affects the peritoneum membrane, which lines the abdominal muscle. Since this is very rare, diagnosis as well as the Peritoneal Mesothelioma treatment is a challenge. Peritoneal Mesothelioma normally occurs in people who are exposed to asbestos and studies reveal that, men are affected more than women.
Symptoms of Peritoneal Mesothelioma
Before starting the Peritoneal Mesothelioma treatment, it is necessary to understand the symptoms of the cancer. The patient experiences weight loss and pain and swelling in the abdomen due to accumulation of fluid in the abdominal cavity. The Other symptoms of Peritoneal Mesothelioma include; abnormal blood clotting; bowel obstruction; fever; anemia, etc. However, if the cancer has reached the other parts, symptoms such as; swallowing trouble; swelling in face and neck along with pain could occur. Fatigue, diarrhea, unusual changes in the bowel movement, lumps under the skin of the abdominal area are also other symptoms. The occurrence of these symptoms is mostly due to the hardening of the membrane that surrounds the abdomen due to the rapid growth of the cancer cells. This in turn causes fluid accumulation in the membranes and creates pressure to the abdomen causing the symptoms of the cancer. The Peritoneal Mesothelioma treatment is mostly delayed due to late and not so clear symptoms.
Causes of the Peritoneal Cancer
One of the main causes of Peritoneal Mesothelioma is asbestos exposure, as most of the cases of this cancer have had lodging of asbestos in the abdominal lining. However, medical science has not yet understood the process of how it pervades into the system. The theory that has been accepted is that the asbestos dust gets ingested, allowing the fibers to enter and settle in the abdomen, which eventually leads to cancer. The other way could be through inhalation of the asbestos dust, which enters the abdominal membrane through the lymphatic system. Irrespective of how they enter, it is tough to get these fibers out of the system and they get lodged in the peritoneum membrane for over 20-50 years, after which they start to modulate the dynamics of the healthy cells of the membrane and cause them to multiply endlessly resulting in the cancer. Let us now discuss about Peritoneal Mesothelioma treatment.
Peritoneal Mesothelioma Treatment
Peritoneal Mesothelioma treatment is most cases are delayed because of the lack of symptoms in the early stages. Most of the patients are initially diagnosed with various other diseases related to the pelvis and abdomens with the symptoms of pain, vomiting, fever, etc. Most of the Peritoneal Mesothelioma treatment process comprises of palliative processes such as; radiation therapy, mesothelioma chemotherapy, etc. Nevertheless, if the disease is deducted in the early stages, which is otherwise called ‘I Stage mesothelioma, a surgical resection which could postpone the initial prognosis. Moreover, the areas of bowel and mesenteries also have implants of the cancer cells. Four major Medical Institutes such as; The Washington Cancer Institute; The National Cancer Institute of Bethesda; The National Cancer Institute of Milan, Italy; and The Columbia Mesothelioma Center of New York; have reported that their Peritoneal Mesothelioma treatment has proven successful with the survival of the patients for 5 years or more.
Different Types of Peritoneal Mesothelioma Treatment
Radiation therapy is one of the Peritoneal Mesothelioma treatment methods, which might involve radiation of the entire abdominal area or rays of high energy targeted on the tumors to make them disappear. Though radiation has been used to kill cancer cells, it could cause vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, fatigue, etc., as a side effect.
Chemotherapy is a very common method used to kill and control cancer cells. Chemotherapy for Peritoneal Mesothelioma treatment is given either through oral pills or injection. The latest method is to inject this directly to the abdominal cavity.
This is a possible first stage of Peritoneal Mesothelioma treatment following the diagnosis. This is a systematic chemotherapy treatment with cisplatin and pemetrexed chemotherapy. This procedure was started at the National Cancer Institute of Italy and was considered to have around 30% response rate and is of value to patients with adjuvant setting after the occurrence of cancer. This is considered more apt for a biphasic malignant Peritoneal Mesothelioma.
Surgery for Peritoneal Mesothelioma Treatment
Surgical removal of the tumors is more effective to slow down the growth rate and relieve the symptoms. However, since a Peritoneal Mesothelioma is not obvious until it becomes more advances, the surrounding tissues also may have to be removed in a surgery. A surgery for Peritoneal Mesothelioma is normally done in combination with other therapies such as; chemotherapy or radiation therapy.
This is a procedure done in the abdomen to remove the fluids accumulated in the abdomen. This greatly relieves the pain symptoms of the patients associated with the disease. This procedure is normally done in any clinic or hospital and involves in pushing a thin tube into the stomach to drain out the fluid collections. Though paracentesis is a part of the treatment process, this is more to alleviate the symptoms rather than treating the disease.
Immunotherapy for Peritoneal Mesothelioma Treatment
This is one of the latest procedures for Peritoneal Mesothelioma treatment and involves in activating the cells of the body or the external agents induced into the body to stimulate the immune system. This stimulation of the immune system allows the body to produce anti agents to fight the cancer. However, immunotherapy cannot be used alone in a treatment and has to be accompanied by chemotherapy for an effective Peritoneal Mesothelioma treatment.
Cases that are diagnosed in early stages are offered the best Peritoneal Mesothelioma treatment and survival rate is quite long, which is between 2 and 5 years. The method of treatment for each patient varies based on the diagnosis and various other factors. As the battle is being fought for curing this disease, various treatment options and traditional options are coming up to help the patients live healthy and for longer period after the disease has been diagnosed. So, now a days there are more options to cure the problems that occur because of Peritoneal Mesothelioma.