Mesothelioma is an extremely malignant tumor that mainly affects the lungs. Starting at the average sheet of the pleura / mezotela /.
A characteristic of this disease is: a cancer that is difficult to detect and it is usually too late for the patient to be saved.
Over the years scientists have found out that the main cause of the formation of Mesothelioma is prolonged contact of the patient with asbestos. This fact makes Mesothelioma one of the most professional malignant disease of the modern world.
What is asbestos – considered a major killer of thousands of people worldwide? Asbestos is a material that includes a large group of fibrous minerals.
Magnesium silicates are resistant to fire and therefore they are used much in construction. When working with asbestos, these fibers are inhaled and remain forever in the lungs. There is no way to clear them out of the lungs.
The first evidence of a carcinogenic effect of asbestos is from 1950, but much later the World Health Organization has warned of the huge danger that lies in its use.
Once the disease Mesothelioma affects hundreds of construction workers who worked and had contact with asbestos in 1977, asbestos was declared carcinogenic, and in the early 90s in the European Union is prohibited. At this time in construction there were over 3,000 types of products in which asbestos is involved.
That is why victims of asbestos are becoming more and Mesothelioma proved to be a very insidious cancer, disease with a long latency period and almost impossible early diagnosis. The disease begins to manifest until 5-6 years after the inhalation of asbestos and in most cases the symptoms are difficult to recognize. Subsequently disease develops aggressive and deadly. Treatment gives almost no effect.
The tumor causes pleural effusions. Pleural effusions are observed in other lung diseases and therefore only pleural puncture with subsequent histological examination can give a precise answer about the type, extent of tumor development and possible damage to other organs.
In latent Mesothelioma may be affected irreversibly stomach and heart as observed accumulation of fluid in the abdominal cavity and development of ascites with subsequent bloating and bowel obstruction. Pleural effusion can lead to serious form of pericarditis. Appear pain in small joints.
First symptoms are important:
- Shortness of breath and pain in the lower part of the chest;
- Dry irritating cough, which is attributed to smoking and smoking complicates the situation and impact of the tumor;
- Weakness and fatigue.
All of these symptoms and their increase are a sign of risk of mesothelioma for people who have had contact with asbestos at some stage of their lives.
Modern medicine already has very effective methods of diagnosis, but treatment depends entirely on the stage of the tumor and how affected other organs.
Ultrasound diagnosis establishes the presence of pleural effusion and the need for histological examination.
X-ray study provides information on the presence of thickened lesions in the pleura.
MRI can provide information on whether there is disease in other organs.
Malignant mesothelioma is a disease that in most cases is fatal and its treatment entirely depends on early diagnosis. Treatment is similar to most malignant tumors – surgery followed by chemotherapy.
Unfortunately in recent years the number of diagnosed with this disease people around the world is constantly growing. Only in 2013 of mesothelioma got sick 50 000 and 35 000 people died.
Early diagnosis gives better prediction of treatment, so scientists are looking for ways for early diagnosis. Often even cytology results are wrong, because malignant cells are few or hardly differ from non-malignant mesothelial cells. As a successful tool for early diagnosis in recent years into account measurement of tumor markers. Proof of existing malignant mesothelioma cells in pleural effusion is the most reliable diagnostic marker for proof of mesothelioma. If you do not identify malignant cells, however, the increased level of Mesothelin can be a serious marker with diagnostic value for Malignant Mesothelioma.
Doctors have proved genetic predisposition, which further complicates the condition of some of the patients and worsens their prognosis.