Mesothelioma - Frequently Asked Questions

Dr. Simi Paknikar
Medically Reviewed by Dr. Simi Paknikar, MD
Last Updated on Apr 06, 2018
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Frequently Asked Questions

1. Which doctor should I consult if I have symptoms suggestive of mesothelioma?

You should first visit a general practitioner who will refer you to a specialist such as a chest specialist or an oncologist.

2. Can mesothelioma ever be cured?

There are several treatment options at stage I and these patients are likely to live longer than late-stage patients. The problem is that the disease often gets detected in the later stages and so doctors don't get a chance to treat a patient in an early stage of the disease.

3. How long do you live after being diagnosed with mesothelioma?

The average life expectancy of a mesothelioma patient ranges from 12 to 21 months, depending on the cancer's stage and treatment outcome. About 40% of mesothelioma patients survive one year, and 20% live more than two years. The survival rate depends on many factors, including age, cancer stage, cancer type, race and gender

4. Can peritoneal mesothelioma be cured?

Surgery is the most hopeful treatment option for peritoneal mesothelioma in the abdomen, but it is only effective for early-stage cancer. Surgery can be performed to remove as much of the tumor as possible in hopes of curing the cancer.

5. What are the side effects of chemotherapy?

Side effects of chemotherapy are weakened immunity, nausea, hair loss, fatigue and bruising.

6. What is the “latency period?”

The latency period means how much time a disease takes to develop and show the symptoms. Mesothelioma has a very long latency period of 20 to 50 years before symptoms develop.

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