While experts do not refer to an exact cure, it is possible that mesothelioma can be cured if caught early. Mesothelioma refers to a cancer developed in the lining of your lung, usually from exposure to asbestos, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Surgical removal of the affected area may be possible in some cases. In general, the outcomes are better for patients who catch mesothelioma early. In fact, it could mean you have significantly more time to spend with your family and friends if doctors diagnose and treat your asbestos-related cancer at an early stage.
Unfortunately, though, mesothelioma is difficult to catch early. Often, people do not experience any symptoms that would seem to warrant a special trip to the doctor until the cancer is already advanced and affecting their ability to breathe.
Advantages of an Early Diagnosis
Doctors and researchers say there is no cure for mesothelioma, no matter the stage when the patient receives their diagnosis. While malignant mesothelioma is a very aggressive type of cancer, patients who receive a stage I mesothelioma diagnosis generally have a better prognosis than those who receive a diagnosis at a later stage.
According to the Mayo Clinic, surgery may be an option for those with stage I mesothelioma. Treatments for this type of asbestos-related cancer include:
- Surgery to remove the area affected by the cancer, when possible
- Radiation therapy
- Supportive treatment of symptoms from the cancer and treatment
According to Clinical Epidemiology, even without surgery, chemotherapy usually lengthens the lives of mesothelioma patients. In advanced mesothelioma cases, supportive treatment to improve quality of life by relieving symptoms may be the only option. When surgery is also an option, it could give the patient considerably more time before the cancer recurs. It could turn a life expectancy of a few months into several years.
Diagnosing Mesothelioma Early Is Difficult
While we cannot say that mesothelioma can be cured if caught early, there are certainly benefits for catching it as early as possible and beginning treatment quickly. Mesothelioma symptoms rarely appear before the cancer advances far enough to jeopardize the affected lung’s ability to oxygenate the blood, so doctors usually cannot diagnose it early.
If you have risk factors, such as a known history of asbestos exposure, you may benefit from regular screenings, according to the National Cancer Institute. Discuss your risks with your doctor, and they may recommend regular screening tests as a part of your routine care. This could include monitoring your lungs with imaging tests such as X-rays or computed tomography (CT) scans.
Your doctor should also explain the signs of lung cancer and mesothelioma to you so you can notify them of anything that is out of the ordinary, even if it seems minor. This could lead to earlier testing and an early-stage diagnosis of mesothelioma or lung cancer.
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A Mesothelioma Diagnosis Could Support a Case for Compensation
If you have endured regular asbestos exposure, often through your occupation, you may be able to join a mass tort to possibly recover an award based on your related expenses and losses. This could include:
- Your medical treatment costs
- Future care costs
- Related expenses for palliative care and support
- Out-of-pocket expenses related to your cancer or treatment
- Pain and suffering damages
- Other non-economic damages
You should not have to shoulder the expenses related to your mesothelioma treatment and care. You most likely developed this cancer as a result of occupational exposure to asbestos, and the asbestos companies may have been aware of the dangers while still exposing you on a regular basis. Your cancer occurred through no fault of your own, so the asbestos companies should be responsible for your care costs, not you.
You may be able to secure financial recovery for your mesothelioma and the related treatment. You may be able to get help filing an asbestos cancer case from a mesothelioma lawyer.
Speak with Pintas & Mullins Law Firm for Free
At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, our mesothelioma and asbestos cancer lawyers fight for financial recovery for victims of asbestos companies. We can help you investigate your diagnosis and determine if a negligent party remains contributed to it by exposing you to asbestos. We do not shy away from any case that has merit, including the toughest cases.
We will pursue recovery on your behalf at no upfront cost to your or your family. We handle cases on a contingency fee basis, taking our fees from the settlement or award we secure on your behalf, never out of your pocket.
Call (800) 794-0444 today to discuss your case with Pintas & Mullins Law Firm. Our case reviews are always free, and we seek to help those with a history of asbestos exposure and a mesothelioma diagnosis.