Mesothelioma treatments that are currently available include chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery, and often extend the patient’s life for a median just slightly above 18 months. New research, however, indicates that surgery combined with certain factors can actually help extend the patient’s survival up to 24 months.
A pair of surgeons from Glenfield Hospital in Leicester, England recently studied 252 patients diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma; 193 of these patients had epithelioid mesothelioma, while 59 had biphasic mesothelioma. To be included in the study, these patients had to have had lung surgery to treat their mesothelioma and survived at least 90 days post-op. Of the 252 participants, 112 underwent extrapleural pneumonectomy (EPP) surgery, which physically removes the diseased lung, and 140 patients chose the extended pleurectomy with decortication (EPD) surgery, which spares the lung, removing only the diseased tissue. Both of these surgeries remove the pleural lining that surrounds the lung, and all or part of the diaphragm and affected tissue near the lung. Chemotherapy was administered to 128 of the participants, either before or after the surgery.
Surprisingly, the researchers found no significant difference in survival rates for those undergoing either surgery. Only 30% of those studied survived 24 months or more. The surgeons looked closely at this group of long-term survivors in the hope of identifying common factors responsible for extending the lifespan of mesothelioma patients. What they concluded from the study is that those patients diagnosed with the epithelial form of mesothelioma who were under age 60, had no cancer in their lymph nodes, and received some form of chemotherapy had the best chance for long-term survival. The study was reported in the European Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery.
The mesothelioma attorneys at the Philadelphia law firm of Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler have dedicated their practice to helping victims of asbestos exposure seek justice and compensation. For nearly 30 years, our attorneys have represented clients diagnosed with asbestos-related illness. If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease, contact our law offices at 800-369-0899 or 215-569-4000, or fill out our online contact form. Located in Center City Philadelphia, we represent clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey.