Mesothelioma is a rare form of asbestos-related cancer. This condition derives its name from the body cells it affects, known as mesothelium. The mesothelium is a protective lining, which covers most of the internal organs in humans such as the lungs, the chest, the abdominal cavity and the heart. Cancer that affects this area is called mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma symptoms can be so slight during its early development stage that they are often confused with normal pains and aches. This is what makes this asbestos-related malignancy hard to detect. In addition, these symptoms can be different depending on which organ the cancer is affecting and how progressive it is. Here are some of the most common symptoms experienced by mesothelioma patients:
The primary cause of Mesothelioma is asbestos. Research indicates that almost every patient who has been diagnosed with this disease came into contact with asbestos at some point, either the individual was working at an asbestos mine or processing plant or the individual resided near an asbestos mine. Other patients had contracted the disease as a result of secondhand exposure. Mesothelioma may also be caused by other things, but asbestos is the main culprit of mesothelioma. This disease is one of the main reasons asbestos is rarely used in construction in the present day.
It is usually difficult for doctors to make a correct mesothelioma diagnosis, as its symptoms often mimic those of other commonly known ailments. In addition, this form of cancer is rare and doctors will often mistake it for other forms of cancer. The symptoms of this disease may start showing 20 to 50 years after asbestos exposure. For this reason, your doctor may often ask for your work history to find out if you were in contact with asbestos. If your doctor suspects the possibility of cancer from your symptoms, he/ she may refer you to an oncologist for further diagnosis. To pinpoint this disease doctors will normally carry out a number of procedures on the patient. These procedures include CT scans, PET scans, X-rays, MRIs and biopsies, which are carried out by different professionals. You should be able to get a diagnosis within two or three months after the tests. It is important to diagnose mesothelioma during its early stages because this will give you a wider range of treatment options.
There are various treatments for retinoblastoma that may be effective for the patient. Some of those treatments, such as surgery and chemotherapy therapy, will treat the underlying condition that is the mutated cells and tumors pressing up against the optic nerve. Please note that not every treatment is right for every patient. Speak with your doctor about your options. The types of surgeries and medications that the patient can undergo to treat retinoblastoma are listed below:
- Photocoagulation: lasers to kill the blood vessels that feed the tumor
- Localized tumor removal
- Cryotherapy: freezing the tumor until it dies
- Thermotherapy: burning the tumor until it dies
- Radiation therapy: radiating the tumor until it dies