How chemotherapy is used to treat malignant mesothelioma

On Behalf of | Oct 7, 2022 | mesothelioma

People who are suffering from malignant mesothelioma may derive some benefit from chemotherapy. Chemo is known for being a particularly harsh and often unpleasant cancer treatment. That’s because it attacks and destroys cancer cells.

Sometimes, doctors will prescribe a course of chemotherapy before they perform surgery to remove the tumor in the hope that it will shrink – making it easier to remove. If the mesothelioma is caught early and is a relatively small tumor, doctors may surgically remove the tumor and then prescribe chemo to try to catch any stray cancer cells and help prevent the return. 

If malignant mesothelioma has spread to the point where it’s not a single tumor or in an isolated area where it can be removed, chemo alone may be the best treatment option.

Chemotherapy varies depending on the type of mesothelioma

What type of chemotherapy you’re prescribed will depend upon whether you have pleural mesothelioma or peritoneal. Pleural mesothelioma, which is the more common type, affects the line of the lungs. 

Usually, the chemo treatment for this is a mixture of two drugs given intravenously every three weeks two to four times (cycles). In some cases, the drugs are injected into the pleural cavity using a catheter. This is a more direct way to do it (and causes fewer side effects). However, it’s typically used only if the cancer hasn’t yet spread.

Chemo treatment for peritoneal mesothelioma is unique. It’s called hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy. It’s done immediately following the removal of the tumor(s). Doctors use a machine that sends the drugs directly into the abdomen.

Staying current on the latest advancements is key

Of course, no two people experience mesothelioma the same way. It’s important to find medical professionals you trust and heed their guidance regarding what’s best for you. It’s also important to have a doctor who is up-to-date on the latest research and treatments for the type of mesothelioma you have.

New treatments for mesothelioma are being tested all the time. Further, numerous clinical trials are ongoing for which you may qualify.

Getting the best possible treatment can extend your life and give you a better quality of life. Money shouldn’t be a concern. That’s why it’s crucial to explore your options for compensation. Having experienced legal guidance can make all the difference.