When a diagnosis of pleural mesothelioma is made, the treatments suggested by doctors would depend on the stage of cancer and the overall health condition of the individual.
A multimodal plan of treatment including surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy is the first option when the cancer is localized. If the cancer is restrained in the lining around the lungs, then intrusive surgery might be the remedy. Along with surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy are also performed to help shrink the tumor or manage its growth and alleviate symptoms like chest pain and night sweats. Either an external beam or intra-operative radiation therapy could be used to soothe physical aches and improve breathing problems. But this treatment is not very commonly practiced because it is toxic to other organs and destroys healthy DNA while simultaneously killing cancer cells. Other less intense surgeries that can help remove tumors or drain fluid build up in the chest are alternative treatment options for pleural mesothelioma.
But when cancer has metastasized, surgery would not be advised. Instead, palliative care that focuses on alleviating chest pain and the other symptoms associated with pleural mesotheliomas like breathing problems, anemia, weight loss, fever, and swelling would be attended to. The focus here would be to improve the quality of life for the individual diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma. The potential benefits, safety and side effects of treatments like immunotherapy, gene therapy, and photodynamic therapy are being studied in clinical trials and could become standard treatment options in the future. Also sometimes, massage therapy, acupuncture, and yoga are supplemental therapies combined with the standard treatments for this cancer.
A specialized, tailor-made integration of surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, alternative therapies and novel treatment procedures which are currently being experimented with, is suggested by doctors depending on how well the patient might respond to treatment. This approach involves the interaction of specialists in each field putting together a treatment plan that is right for the patient diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma.