Pleural Mesothelioma Symptoms

Pleural Mesothelioma Symptoms
Filing an asbestos lawsuit may result in significant compensation for patients with pleural mesothelioma, but the decision to file a lawsuit should not be taken lightly. Fortunately, our Patient Advocates are available to give you more information about the pleural mesothelioma lawsuit process and help you locate an experienced attorney to file your claim.
The main reason people file pleural mesothelioma lawsuits is to obtain compensation to help with substantial financial burdens. Financial burdens include:
  • Surgery
  • Radiation
  • Chemotherapy
  • Palliative care
  • Medical equipment
  • Lost wages
  • Travel costs

But, what is Pleural Mesothelioma?
Pleural mesothelioma is a rare and malignant cancer caused by asbestos. Mesothelioma tumors form in the pleura, a thin membrane of cells that line the lungs and chest wall.
Pleural mesothelioma differs from other types in four primary ways:
  1. Location: Pleural mesothelioma is located in the linings of the lungs and the chest wall, known as the pleura.
  2. Symptoms: As the disease mostly affects the lungs, the primary symptoms affect the respiratory system, such as shortness of breath, or the thoracic cavity, such as chest pain.
  3. Treatment: The standard treatment for pleural mesothelioma is surgery, which often includes removal of some or all of the pleura and possibly part of the lung, combined with chemotherapy and/or radiation.
  4. Survival: The prognosis for pleural mesothelioma is poor, with a median survival time of about 1 year. However, there are cases of long-term survival, in some cases as long as 20 years.

Pleural Mesothelioma Prognosis 
Pleural Mesothelioma Symptoms
As with all types of mesothelioma, prognosis for pleural mesothelioma is relatively poor. For patients who do not receive treatment, the median survival is only six months; however, certain types of treatment can improve prognosis significantly.
For example, studies have shown that patients who receive a cocktail chemotherapy treatment of pemetrexed (Alimta) and cisplatin have a longer median survival time (12.1 months) than chemotherapy using cisplatin alone (9.1 months).
Pleural Mesothelioma Symptoms
Anywhere from 20 to 50 years can pass between the time a person is exposed to asbestos and when pleural mesothelioma symptoms begin to appear. Once symptoms do begin to occur, they often show up first in the chest and respiratory system, although some symptoms (like weight loss or fever) can be systemic. Common Symptoms is:
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath (dyspnea)
  • Fluid in the lungs (pleural effusion)
  • Dry cough

Pleural Mesothelioma Diagnosed
Malignant pleural mesothelioma symptoms often present with symptoms that are similar to those of other diseases, making diagnosis extremely difficult in many cases. The most common way to diagnose the disease is to undergo a series of tests that can rule out other diseases, including various types of cancer.
The first step is usually to perform one or more imaging scans (x-ray, CT, PET, or MRI) to identify potential tumors. If such a tumor is detected, one or more blood tests may be performed to look for certain biomarkers (high levels of specific substances in the blood). If these tests point toward the possibility of mesothelioma, the diagnosis will need to be verified through a biopsy – usually through a thoracoscopy, thoracotomy, thoracentesis, or mediastinoscopy.
The most common misdiagnoses for pleural mesothelioma include:
  1. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  2. Pneumonia
  3. Asthma
  4. Influenza (the flu)
  5. Other chest cancers, such as lung cancer or adenocarcinoma
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