Peritoneal Mesothelioma Treatment options vary a great deal from one case to another. This is primarily because the condition can be difficult to diagnose. One of the problems in diagnosing, and thereby treating, peritoneal mesothelioma is that it can be dormant for years before tumors develop in the stomach lining. By the time it is diagnosed, it has become advanced, which makes treatment difficult.
Peritoneal mesothelioma can cause a wide range of symptoms, including nausea, vomiting, weakness, fever, anemia, difficulty breathing, loss of appetite, weight loss, and distention of the abdominal region. At the same time, patients may experience bowel obstruction or other irregularities as well as pain. Since these symptoms are also associated with a number of other conditions and illnesses, it’s important for the treating physician to know of any previous history of asbestos exposure so that peritoneal mesothelioma can be considered for diagnosis.
Once the disease is identified, an oncologist will help determine the best method of Peritoneal Mesothelioma Treatment. In the majority of cases, the diagnosis comes so late in the development of the affliction that surgery is not an option. However, sometimes, the cancer is operable. When surgery becomes a viable option, it is used to remove the tumors.
Other times, radiation and chemotherapy are used. Radiation is sometimes aimed directly at the tumor, and its main effect is to lessen or moderate the intensity of the pain. One of the main uses of chemotherapy is called intra-peritoneal chemo. This is the injecting of chemotherapy drugs directly into the stomach. If surgery is attempted, chemotherapy agents will often be introduced into the abdominal cavity during the procedure. This is known as perioperative intraperitoneal chemotherapy. It has shown great promise in improving the life expectancy of peritoneal mesothelioma patients.
Different chemotherapy drugs and various combinations may be used, depending on each case. Just like radiation treatments, the chemotherapy drugs can lessen the severity and discomfort of the symptoms. As a result, the quality of life is often greatly improved.
In addition, a number of experimental treatments for mesothelioma are being tested in clinical trials. Due to the rarity of peritoneal mesothelioma, a patient’s chances of being accepted into a clinical trial are good. Photodynamic therapy, intensity-modulated radiation therapy, gene therapy, and immunotherapy are all examples of these experimental treatments that may provide hope to peritoneal mesothelioma patients in the future.
Alternatively, patients may elect to try natural therapies to relieve their symptoms and increase their comfort and relaxation. Hypnosis, massage therapy, acupuncture, and nutritional supplements may all offer benefits. These therapies, however, should only be undertaken with the advice and encouragement of an oncologist, as some supplements may interfere with the effectiveness of traditional treatments.