Mesothelioma is a weird form of cancer which occurs in the cells surrounding the organs called the mesothelial cells. Mesothelioma occurs most often in the tissues covering the lungs and is nearly always caused by exposure to asbestos.
It is usually over 20 years before asbestos related cancer is diagnosed and the prognosis for patients is hardly ever positive. Traditional medication include chemotherapy, but in recent years there has been more effort and time spent researching alternative medications that will help to eradicate the disease or improve a sufferer’s quality of life.
A lot of these medications are still in testing and research stages, but an increasing number of those suffering with the disease are willing to take a chance to see if these medications can help them.
Vitamin C has been trialled as a cure at the Vale of Leven Hospital in Scotland and reportedly had ‘excellent results’. It was administered in quite high doses by the chief surgeon and was deemed successful, although in other studies have reported minimal or no success.
Iscador, a natural remedy, is the trading name of Viscum album, a particular species of mistletoe,, which has been said to reduce the effects of cancer. Very few experts suggest Viscum album reduces tumour size, but stimulation of the immune system, an improved in general health well being, and a reversion of cancerous cells into less damaging forms are some of its benefits.
Astragulus is another plant based remedy, which is a native Chinese plant which has been studied as a remedy in China. One such study concluded that if chemotherapy was combined with injections of Astragulus then the development of tumours could be inhibited and the function of the immune system could be improved.
No alternative therapies have been completely endorses as successful as of yet, but the advancements in the way we can treat and reduce the effects of asbestos cancer imply that experts are getting closer to finding ways of increasing life expectancy in patients, or perhaps even finding a cure.
Is There a Cure For Pleural Mesothelioma?
Pleural mesothelioma is a rather rare form of cancer that is the result of extensive asbestos exposure. The pleura, the lubricating cells of the chest and lung walls, are affected. The onset of symptoms is gradual and may take up to ten years before changes indicating this cancer develop.
While pleural disease by itself is not fatal, the complications arising from it may be fatal. For example, pleural plaque formation may cause diminished lung function, resulting in death. Oftentimes, the only symptoms are thickening of the pleural lining and formation of plaques that lead physicians to investigate further and make a diagnosis.
Pleural Mesothelioma Prognosis
If you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma, the first thing that probably runs through your mind is, “Is there is a cure?” There is a cure – as long as the disease is caught in the earlier stages of development. Pleural mesothelioma spreads quickly and can even affect your heart, despite starting off in the pleura. It is said to be fatal within a year from when the condition is diagnosed. However, early detection is the key to recovery.
Can Mesothelioma Be Treated?
Depending on how early pleural mesothelioma is detected, life-sustaining medications may serve to extend your life. While there is no indefinite cure, the disease can certainly be controlled through medications such as chemotherapy and radiation medication. Surgical resection may be possible in earlier stages of the disease before the tumor spreads to other body parts and can considerably slow down the advance of the disease. Surgeries such as pneumonectomy and extrapleural pneumonectomy that are often used in treating lung cancers and lung conditions also aid in slowing down mesothelioma.
Most physicians suggest the use of chemotherapy drugs to manage malignant pleural mesothelioma. However, the Food and Drug Administration has approved only one – a combination of Cisplatin and Alimta (Pemetrexed). All other combinations are currently in clinical trials, and have no solid basis for pleural mesothelioma medication. Chemotherapy and surgery may often be combined with radiation therapy to slow the growth of the tumor cells and prolong life.
In recent times, alternative and complementary therapies have made their way into cancer medication approaches. While these may not be standalone medications, therapies such as reflexology, massage and acupuncture help in increasing the effectiveness of the overall medication program and aid in pain and anxiety management.
What To Do If You Are Diagnosed With Mesothelioma
If you’ve been diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma, discuss your medication options with your doctor. While there is no proven cure for this disease, there are certainly steps you can take to slow it down, depending on how early it is detected.
As mesothelioma is caused by exposure to asbestos, you can propose a mesothelioma lawsuit if your exposure occurred in the course of your job or as a result of sub-standard housing. There’re few mesothelioma lawyers who’ll be glad to help you draw up your case and get compensation which can provide for your medication and for your loved ones, must the medication not go as planned. Lastly, make sure you’ve a good support group of family or friends who may be with you through the entire course of medication and your lawsuit. Both are stressful, and you need all the support possible as you battle it out.
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