Can Surgery Help Treat My Mesothelioma?
Anyone who has heard the words “you have cancer” knows that the news comes with a terrible mix of emotions, usually boiling down to fear and concern. For most people, the news is unexpected and completely terrifying, which can make taking the next step very challenging. Everyone deals with a cancer prognosis in their own way, but for most people, finding a treatment plan and a definitive course of action helps provide stability and promotes positivity and hope. But, how do you go about choosing a treatment plan? Most patients turn to their doctors for recommendations and medical insight, but it still does not hurt to do some digging of your own to discover what your options are and how they work.
If you were diagnosed with mesothelioma, you might be wondering if surgery is a viable option. There are several different treatment options available to mesothelioma patients, but the best choice for one person might not be feasible for another. In order to determine whether or not surgery could work for you, find out what types of treatments usually work for mesothelioma patients.
Understanding Surgery as a Treatment Option
Mesothelioma can present itself in several different ways. The type of cancer you have could directly affect the type of treatment you receive and the way surgery will be performed. Mesothelioma surgery is usually implemented as a way to remove cancerous tumors, which is why this is usually a good treatment option for patients with removable tumors. However, patients with tumors that cannot be removed, or with too many tumors, may not be able to have surgery safely and may benefit from other types of treatment. Likewise, patients in the early stages of mesothelioma who do not have any notable tumors might do better to participate in chemotherapy.
Types of Mesothelioma Surgeries
For some mesothelioma patients, surgery can be an effective way to remove as much of the cancer as possible. There are three types of surgery for mesothelioma: diagnostic, potentially curative, and palliative.
Diagnostic surgery aims to identify the cancer, usually through a noninvasive biopsy, and is not a treatment method.
Potentially curative surgery is performed to remove as much cancer from the body as possible. The types of surgeries that fall under this category include Extrapleural Pneumonectomy, Cytoreduction, Pericardiectomy, and Pleurectomy/Decortication. While each of these procedures deals with a different part of the body, be it the heart, lung, or another organ, they all include the removal or cancerous parts.
The final type of surgery is palliative, which can be performed alone or alongside curative surgeries. Palliative surgeries are meant to relieve pain and prolong the patient’s life and are often reserved for patients who have later stages of Mesothelioma.
Depending on the type of mesothelioma you have, the progressive state of the tumors, and your overall health, your doctor might recommend any of these types of surgical treatments, or none at all. In most cases, surgical treatments go hand-in-hand with chemotherapy and/or radiation, but not always. If you are interested in learning more about your treatment options, consult your doctor.
If you developed mesothelioma as a result of asbestos exposure, you may be eligible to seek compensation for the harm you have suffered. Contact Shrader & Associates L.L.P. for help with your mesothelioma case.