Mesothelioma is a cancer that comes about as a direct result of exposure to asbestos. It’s estimated that up to 3,000 new cases are diagnosed every year in the United States alone. Those who hear the news that they have the cancer are understandably going to want to know what their life expectancy for mesothelioma is estimated to be. How much time is left is dependent on a variety of factors, including treatments that are designed to extend what time is left.
The best way to extend life expectancy for mesothelioma is to catch it early on in its progression. While it may sound like it’s easier said than done, it is possible. Regular checkups for those who have worked in environments with asbestos is a must, no matter how inconvenient they may be. Having a doctor monitor the body means that the moment an issue arises, treatment can begin promptly. Catching the symptoms early on has a better chance of getting the cancer while it is still localized and easier to treat. Once it has spread, treatment becomes more difficult.
Which stage of mesothelioma the patient is at affects how long the patient has to live. Being in stages 1 and 2 have a better outlook as opposed to those in 3 or 4. Hence the reason why early detection is so important.
Taking care of oneself also plays a role in life expectancy. A patient who has taken care of themselves in terms of exercise and non-smoking increases their survival. Being fit translates into the body being able to tolerate the treatments and surgeries that come up as treatment progresses. It also aids in the ability to recover more quickly from any invasive treatments such as chemotherapy.
Location of the tumor is important. A localized tumor that can be removed via surgery has a better outlook than ones that have spread into other areas of the body.
Last, but not least, is the type of mesothelioma. There are different types, all of which have different survival rates and treatments available.
There is no one treatment that works on a regular, repeatable basis for mesothelioma. However, it’s not impossible for those who have been diagnosed to extend their life expectancy by getting aggressive with their treatment.