Mesothelioma is a tumor that develops from cells in the mesothelium. Mesothelium is a layer of cells that covers the serous membranes, which in turn line many organs and the body cavity.
Mesothelioma is a rare disease that affects the surface of the pleura (membrane of the lungs), the membrane of the peritoneum, and occasionally the pericardium. A tumor of this nature, due to its rapid growth, metastasizes to neighboring organs in a short time. Smoking and inhalation of asbestos vapors are considered the main causes of mesalioma formation.
The most common type of tumor is pleural mesothelioma, which occurs in older men. After the start of growth, the tumor may be asymptomatic for many years.
Having reached a certain size, the neoplasm makes itself felt by the following symptoms:
- Violent cough, sometimes with hemoptysis;
- Difficulty breathing
- Pain in the chest due to the growth of the tumor into the ribs;
- Poor appetite and dramatic weight loss;
- Feeling unwell, weakness;
- Decreased performance;
The disease occurs in men over 50. It is accompanied by pain, bloating, indigestion, belching, hiccups, and flatulence. Tumor growth can lead to ascites, a buildup of fluids in the peritoneum. Because of this, an increase in the abdomen occurs.
Surgical excision is used as a treatment for such a tumor. With inoperable mesothelioma, complex treatment is prescribed with the use of chemotherapy and radiation therapy.
In this form, the tumor is extremely rare. It makes itself felt, reaching an impressive size. This is accompanied by symptoms such as: chest pain, malfunctioning of the cardiovascular system (hypotension, heart failure, arrhythmia, tachycardia, angina pectoris), sweating, swelling of the limbs, suffocation, loss of consciousness. Such a tumor can lead to a heart attack.
Such a tumor is benign. Formed from the serous membrane of the testicle. It is characterized by an increase in the affected organ, pain in the groin and lower back. With timely detection of the disease at an early stage, the prognosis will be favorable.
In modern medicine, there are several methods of treating mesothelial tumors:
- Operational excision;
- Neoadjuvant and adjuvant chemotherapy;
- Radiation therapy (brachytherapy and interoperative);
- Gene therapy;
With the surgical method of treatment, it is not always possible to completely excise the tumor due to its inaccessibility. If it is possible to remove the entire neoplasm, then areas of healthy tissue are removed after it to reduce the risk of relapse.
Removal of the pleura – pleurectomy is performed at an early stage of pleural mesothelioma. In later stages, in addition to the pleura, it is possible to remove the lung, part of the diaphragm and the pericardium.
The most common treatment for mesothelioma is chemotherapy. The tumor is affected by potent drugs that are injected intravenously or into the pleura itself. Cisplatin and Pemetrexed are effective drugs. Chemotherapy can be used as an adjunct treatment after surgical removal.