What is Mesothelioma and Where Can It Be Found?

Mesothelioma is a type of cancer that develops in the lining that covers the outer surface of some of the organs in the body. It is usually related to exposure to asbestos, a group of minerals found naturally in rocks and soil that form long, thin and very strong fibers. The most common type of mesothelioma affects the tissue surrounding the lungs (pleura), but it can also affect tissue in the abdomen (peritoneal mesothelioma), around the heart, and around the testicles. Symptoms of mesothelioma vary depending on the location, type, and stage of the cancer, and may not appear until 30 to 50 years after initial exposure to asbestos.

Approximately 70 to 80% of mesothelioma cases result from exposure to asbestos. Unfortunately, at the beginning of the course of the disease, many people have no symptoms, and the tumor can be difficult to see on an X-ray examination. If symptoms do occur, they can progress rapidly and cause life-threatening complications. When symptoms occur, patients should seek medical attention, as early detection may improve the prognosis of mesothelioma.

Descriptions of common types of treatments used for pleural and peritoneal mesothelioma are listed below. The American Cancer Society notes that there have been some published reports of mesotheliomas that developed after exposure to high doses of radiation to the chest or abdomen or after injections of thorium dioxide (Thorotrast), a material used by doctors in some chest x-rays until the 1950s. The number of people diagnosed with mesothelioma in the United States is no longer increasing as it had in previous decades, and is now declining slightly in men. Once the diagnosis of mesothelioma is confirmed, doctors will classify the disease into one of four stages.

FDA Approved Combination of Nivolumab (Opdivo) and Ipilimumab (Yervoy) for Unresectable Mesothelioma is a type of cancer treatment that uses high-energy x-rays and other types of radiation to kill mesothelioma cells or prevent them from growing. Erionite was first associated with the disorder due to a large increase in the incidence of mesothelioma in Cappadocia, central Anatoli region of Turkey.Finding a community with other patients, survivors, and people who understand the complexities of a rare cancer such as mesothelioma can ease the heavy burden. If you are looking for support for mesothelioma, contact our patient advocates at (85) 404-4592.Find a nonprofit national defense organization that can offer additional information, services and support to people with mesothelioma.

Marissa Trafford
Marissa Trafford

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