As a stand-alone treatment, pleural mesothelioma radiation is not used, as high doses of radiation are fraught with dangerous complications (radiation pneumonitis, pulmonary fibrosis, pericardial effusion), and low doses do not have the desired effect. Radiotherapy can be prescribed to inoperable patients to reduce pain. The doses used are 20-30 Gy. The combination of these three main treatments is made by the doctor individually for each patient, based on the stage of the disease, the histological type of the tumour, the presence of metastases and more.
The following options are available:
- Surgery (pleuralectomy or radical removal) + LT + HT.
- Extraoperative pneumectomy + intrapleural CT + CT.
- Extrapleural pneumopectomy + LT.
- Neoadjuvant CT + surgery + LT.
- Pleurectomy + intraoperative radiotherapy + standard RT and CT.
Types of radiation therapy:
- After Removal Of The Lung, It Is Possible To Apply High Doses Of Radiation (54-70 Gy). This Approach Ensures A Significant Reduction In Subsequent Seizures;
- Radiation And Brachytherapy. The Results Of Such Treatments For Pleural Mesothelioma Have Not Been Sufficiently Studied.
The highest survival rates were observed after use of 2, 3 and 4 variants (24-36 months). When used in combination with chemotherapy alone or photodynamic therapy, as well as chemotherapy or RT alone, the median survival does not exceed 14-16 months.
Photodynamic therapy is based on the introduction into the human body of photosensitizing substances that accumulate in tumour cells. It is then irradiated with a light beam of definite length and intensity. Under the action of light, photosensitizer reactions cause cancer cell death. Photodynamic mesothelioma therapy does not yet lead to a significant increase in survival (median is 14 months). It also has many side effects.
Immunopreparations (interferon alfa, interleukin) are used intrapleurally or in combination with cytotoxic drugs. They are designed to strengthen the body’s defenses so that it can fight the tumour itself. It involves the intrapleural administration of vaccines against the SV-40 virus.
Metastases and relapse
Metastases of the pleural mesothelioma occur fairly quickly in the lymphatic system. It extends to the lungs, lymph nodes, pericardium. There is also germination of a tumour from one pleura to another.
Hematogenous by pleural mesothelioma metastasizes to the liver and brain. Secondary tumours are treated surgically and chemotherapy. If lung metastases are detected – remove some of the lungs. You can also remove the ribs, stomach, and other affected organs. Chemotherapy drugs help destroy the remnants of cancer cells that are in the patient’s body. For metastatic neoplasms, more aggressive regimens are used.
Relapses in pleural mesothelioma develop in 10-15% of cases. In order to be identified on time, it is necessary to check every 1-3 months.
- Physical Examination;
- CT Or MRI;
- Ultrasound Examination Of Abdominal Organs And Cervical Lymph Nodes.
- To reduce the likelihood of recurrence of the disease, it is recommended to use radical surgery. Radiation therapy also has a positive effect.
How Many Live With Pleural Mesothelioma?
Without treatment, patients with mesothelioma live 6-8 months. Despite the whole arsenal of tools used to fight the tumour, the effectiveness of treatment remains low. Unlike most cancers, which are estimated at 5-year survival, the term median survival is used for mesothelioma. This figure is 1-1.5 years.
The prognosis for pleural mesothelioma depends on many factors, including the stage and form of the disease, the health and age of the patient and the quality of treatment.
Radical chemo-radiation allows you to achieve an increase in life expectancy of 2-3 years, but unfortunately, few survive to 5 years.
- Limiting Contact With Asbestos;
- Smoking Cessation;
- Planned Surveys Of People At Risk.
It is almost impossible to prevent cancer. The best thing you can do is not delay your doctor’s visit when anxiety symptoms occur. Early detection of the disease can save your life!