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These Are Some of the Symptoms of Pleural Mesothelioma

Pleural mesothelioma is a disease that affects the lining of the lungs and these linings are called lung pleura. This disease has been mistaken for lung cancer but, the two have no association because this disease affects the serous membrane. The serous membrane is found on several organs near the chest and abdomen and the most common place the disease affects is the lungs. In most cases, the disease is malignant and this means that it is a form of cancer. Like many other mesothelioma cases, it is caused by the exposure to asbestos. The most common way you can get the pleural mesothelioma is through inhalation. You can take in the asbestos fibers with the air and the body is not able to expel them out of your system and therefore, over a long period of time even up to 30 years, they cause the lining cells to change their form because of scarring and the disease forms.

The major symptom of pleural mesothelioma is heavy breathing because of the fluid which has built up and accumulated putting pressure on the lungs. Other symptoms that will contribute to the build up of the fluid are coughing persistently. You will sometimes cough blood, swallowing will become a major task for you, you will experience shortness of breath even when at a resting position, fatigue, weight loss, pain in the chest area and lumps which will be under the skin in your chest. When you start to see some of this symptoms, it is advisable to seek medical help because you might have a fair chance of recovery. Delaying usually worsens any case. If you suspect to have been exposed to asbestos, it will also be helpful to get checked out for the evidence of the disease and you stand a better chance of getting rid of possibilities of future development.

It is very difficult to test for pleural mesothelioma because the symptoms are so similar to other disease like pneumonia and influenza. The latency period or the time that it takes to develop is usually very long and the disease may have occurred without any symptoms. Apart from observing the symptoms, some tests will have to be undertaken to know exactly where the disease is and whether it has spread. The tests will also seek to find out what type of cancer it is. The test will include x rays, biopsies and others. There are several treatment options for pleural mesothelioma and other treatments have not yet been approved. The known treatments which can provide a cure are surgery. The tumor is surgically removed and other treatments are administered to prevent a re-occurrence.

Chemotherapy is a term that refers to the drugs used to treat cancer. These drugs are designed to target and kill the cells that are dividing but, it is not specific on the cancer cells so, healthy and good cells are also destroyed and this is the reason patients loose hair and become weak. The hair cells and immunity cells are being destroyed along with the cancerous cells. Therefore the side effects for this treatment are hair loss, nausea and lack of appetite. You will also be prone to infections because of a low immunity.

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Innovative Treatments to Successfully Target Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma

Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma (MPM) is the most common type of mesothelioma with past asbestos exposure representing the major risk factor. While the search for new therapies that target the genes and processes driving MPM has been slow, two new approaches, which are immediately available to you, are showing significant improvements over standard treatment in clinical trials.

Before we discuss these enhanced treatment options, we must first briefly explore two key aspects of MPM progression: Angiogenesis and Epigenetic Regulation.


You've likely heard of Angiogenesis. It is the physiological process that tumors use to recruit new blood vessels in order to sustain their continual growth. They do this by manipulating the over-expression of genes that initiate and direct the growth of new, leaky blood vessels from existing ones. This new supply of blood not only allows the tumor to grow, but also provides a mechanism for the tumor cells to metastasize (travel through the body).

The process of angiogenesis is governed by its own unique combination of genes, separate from those involved in the normal formation of new blood vessels (a process known as vasculogenesis). This, it turns out, provides us with an opportunity for successful treatment through the targeting of these unique gene combinations.

One of the most specific and critical regulators of angiogenesis is the family of vascular endothelial growth factors (VEGFs), which regulate endothelial proliferation (the formation of new blood vessels), blood vessel permeability, and survival.In MPM,over-expression of VEGF is common and correlates with lower remission rates and reduced overall patient survival. Clearly, effectively targeting VEGFs would result in limiting the blood supply to tumors thus successfully prohibiting their growth. And that's just what we are seeing in current clinical trials. (More on that in a bit.)

Epigenetic Regulation:

A significant development in MPM treatment involves studies that focus on manipulating the processes of gene regulation, commonly referred to as epigenetic regulation. In MPM, tumor suppressor genes (the genes that, when functioning properly, naturally prohibit the growth of tumor cells) are silenced due to three key forms of epigenetic regulation:

1. Removal of acetyl groups by histone deacetylases (HDACs);

2. Inhibition of histone acetyltransferases (HATs), which add acetyl groups; and

3. Addition of methyl groups by DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs).

In MPM, the over-expression of HDACs coupled with the inhibition of HATs is considered a key process that leads to disease progression. The over-expression of DNMTs occurs in most cancers.

The benefit of targeting epigenetic processes is that they are reversible. Unlike a mutated gene which cannot be reactivated, it is possible to reactivate tumor suppressor genes that have been silenced by epigenetic processes. Thus, effective treatment must include some process whereby tumor suppressor genes are supported to maintain their function and reactivated in cases where they have already been silenced.

To this end, there are numerous clinical trials currently exploring the use of unique combinations of drugs to inhibit the silencing of tumor suppressor genes and to stop the flow of blood to tumors. Current clinical trials using HDAC and VEGF inhibitors are showing significant benefits in patient survival. For example, Vorinostat, an inhibitor of HDACs, has recently been shown to be beneficial for advanced mesothelioma patients whose cancer has progressed after standard chemotherapy.

The continued development and incorporation of these new drugs as part of standard treatment will undoubtedly be realized over the next few years. In the meantime there are some very simple and effective natural measures that you can take immediately that will directly and powerfully influence the growth of cancer.

While clinical trials provide the basis for current molecular-targeted therapies, plant phytochemicals (also known as: Nutraceuticals) provide an exciting option as an additional means of gene regulation.

Science has identified the following nutraceuticals as having a significant effect in slowing the mechanisms involved in MPM progression. Thus it is imperative, as part of your treatment protocol, that you ensure these substances are a part of your daily diet in the appropriate combinations.

The following section is a list of nutraceuticals that have been shown to directly affect epigenetic regulation and angiogenisis in various cancers.

In order to inhibit DNMTs to maintain tumor suppressor gene function, we must consume the following foods:

Apigenin (Parsley, Thyme), Curcumin (Tumeric, Ginger, Mustard), EGCG (Green Tea, Nutmeg)

Genistein (Soy), Resveratrol (Red Wine, Grape Skins), Sulforaphane (Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbages)

In order to inhibit HDACs to maintain tumor suppressor gene function, we must consume these foods:

Allyl Mercaptan(Garlic), Curcumin (Tumeric, Ginger, Mustard), Genistein (Soy) Sulforaphane (Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbages)

In order to activate HATs to reactivate tumor suppressors, we must regularly consume these foods:

Curcumin (Tumeric, Ginger, Mustard), EGCG (Green Tea, Nutmeg), Genistein (Soy)

In order to inhibit VEGFs to prevent further angiogenesis, we must ensure that these substances are a part of our daily diet:

Curcumin (Tumeric, Ginger, Mustard), EGCG (Green Tea, Nutmeg), 6-Gingerol (Ginger)

In Conclusion:

There are many molecular pathways and genes involved in MPM. Above we have explored just a few. However, including a daily diet of the nutraceuticals listed above will go a long way to improve your statistical chances for remission and disease prevention, as these nutraceuticals are revealing themselves to be significant in the treatment and prevention of many forms of cancer.

Given the success of current clinical trials being conducted using molecular-targeted therapies this is also an important avenue to consider as an adjunct to standard treatment. Many clinical trials can be accessed from your home town through your current treatment specialist after a brief registration and testing process.

It is essential that you talk to your doctor before considering any changes to your diet as these nutraceuticals, while typically enhancing of any standard therapy, can interfere with prescription drugs.

If you would like more information on the use of nutraceuticals to enhance your life-expectancy or to have a personalized nutraceutical diet prepared for you, we welcome you to contact us @ We are also happy to arrange to consult with your treatment team to share the most current information on enhanced treatment options and clinical trial access with them.

Patient Resources:

The Mesothelioma Center - The web based resource also provides free support services for patients and families world-wide. For additional information please visit or call (800) 615-2270.

About the Author:

Alex Rolland is a cancer researcher, educator, and CEO of Cancer Treatment Options and Management ( ). CTOAM is a personalized cancer research company that specializes in using the most current peer-reviewed scientific research on cancer diagnostics, enhanced treatments, nutraceuticals, and clinical trials to educate patients on the treatments and diets that will provide the best statistical chances for longstanding recovery.

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Diffuse Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma

Diffuse malignant pleural mesothelioma, or DMM, is a rare but highly aggressive type of cancer. It occurs in the thin layer of tissue, the pleura, lining the chest cavity and lungs. Once diagnosed with DMM, most patients do not survive beyond one year. This cancer is more common in men than in women, and in older people.

Most people with DMM have a history of exposure to asbestos; however, if they are not aware that such exposure occurred, they may be unaware that they are at risk. A patient with DMM typically has one or more of the following signs and symptoms: chest pain, shortness of breath, unexplained weight loss, fatigue, fever, or a cough. An x-ray usually shows that the pleural tissue around the lungs has thickened due to the development of a number of nodules or small cancerous growths. Sometimes, there may be a single large growth. When a biopsy of the cancer tissue is done, the types of cells that make up the cancer may be epithelioid, mixed, or sarcomatoid. People with epithelioid cell cancers tend to survive somewhat longer; those with sarcomatoid cancers usually have the shortest survival.

DMM is always treated as aggressively as possible. The type of treatment depends on the dominant cell type the cancer is made of, the extent of spread of the cancer, and the overall health of the person undergoing treatment. Surgery is a preferred option where the bulk of the cancer can be removed. Many anti-cancer drugs are being tried to treat DMM, with varying levels of short-term success. Radiotherapy may also be an option. A number of clinical trials are currently underway to try and find a treatment that may improve the outlook for DMM patients. However, only seven percent of people with DMM survive beyond five years.

Malignant Mesothelioma [] provides detailed information about malignant mesothelioma, diffuse malignant pleural mesothelioma, malignant mesothelioma diagnosis, malignant mesothelioma lawyer and more. Malignant Mesothelioma is the sister site of Peritoneal Mesothelioma Lawyers [].

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High Incidence Of Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma In Australia

Australia has the highest per capita rate of mesothelioma cases. The worst, experts say, is yet to come, Most of the mesothelioma cases in Australia are of the malignant pleural mesothelioma type. Most of the detected cases have contracted the disease due to exposure to asbestos. When the asbestos fibers or asbestos dust is inhaled through the nose, it travels down the respiratory system. Then it settles down in the lungs. The lungs have a lining called as the mesothelium lining. When this lining comes in touch with the asbestos fibers, it starts behaving in a funny manner.

It starts dividing rapidly and it also starts having longer life spans. This causes tumors in the lungs and this condition is called pleural mesothelioma. This may be cancerous (malignant pleural mesothelioma) or non-cancerous (benign pleural mesothelioma). Australia has a very high number of malignant pleural mesothelioma cases. This is a very terrible condition and has no known cure. Since the symptoms of this disease like fever, cough, chest pain, etc. are often confused with other diseases like pneumonia; it is quite difficult to correctly diagnose this disease.

Mostly it is diagnosed only in the last stages of the cancer. The patient lives for hardly a year after the diagnosis. Also, the latency period of this disease is very long. Latency period is the period between exposure to asbestos fibers and the onset of this disease. Because of the long latency period of nearly 20 to 30 years, many times this disease is not spoken as connected to asbestos. Australia has about 16 cases per million populations of adults affected with mesothelioma every year. Also, the number of mesothelioma cases in men is much higher than women. Around 600 cases of mesothelioma are recorded every year in Australia. It is expected that in the next 10-15 years, some 13000 more mesothelioma cases will be recorded.

There is a high-risk group in Australia. The following people of Australia seem to be getting mesothelioma more as compared to the remaining population:

o Town Residents

o Builders and building laborers

o Workers of shipbuilding and dockyard

o Railway workers

o Asbestos factory workers

o Power station employees.

Though Australia has such a huge incidence of mesothelioma deaths, Australia is the world's pioneer in undertaking lot of medical research in mesothelioma. It has found a new method of treatment that promises to reduce the mortality rate. Since, there is no cure for this disease, it is better if it detected earlier. The normal methods of treatment like chemotherapy and surgery do not work in the last stages of cancer; so it is better if the disease is detected as early as possible. The Australian researchers have invented a new Screening test that can help detect mesothelioma of the malignant pleural type. This can be used in the high-risk group to find out early evidences of the malignant pleural mesothelioma. The earlier the disease is detected, the more better the chances of survival of the patient. The Australian researchers are undertaking more and more research in the medical field of mesothelioma. Australia is a real pioneer in mesothelioma research. It is a leader and example for all the other countries. Though Australia has done So much to advance mesothelioma research, still the future of Australia is bleak.

It is expected what the number of mesothelioma deaths in Australia will continue to skyrocket till the year 2020. After this, it is expected that the mesothelioma deaths will steadily decline before finally stopping. This is mainly because of the long latency period of mesothelioma. So, even after all types of asbestos are completely banned, the effects of asbestos exposure can be felt till some 20 to 30 years later. The one advantage of all the research is that the chances of survival have increased for mesothelioma patients.

Also, the life span of the patient after the detection of the disease has increased. Previously, the patient had hardly a year left to live. However, now, due to early diagnosis, this has substantially increased. Australia should continue to undertake more research on mesothelioma for the global good. It should try to advance medical science to make new innovations in the treatment of mesothelioma. All the other countries should actively support and help Australian efforts. Australia should also make available the fruits of its efforts for the entire wide world.

The writer is a research expert at a medical research firm. Webmaster:

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Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma Survival Rate

Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma is a lethal cancer that starts in the lining of the lungs. The main cause is believed to be unprotected contact with asbestos. Every year about 3000 new cases of this disease are reported in the United States. It is estimated that over the past fifty years nearly eight million people have been exposed to asbestos and that 300,000 new cases would be reported by the year 2030. The peak may be around 2020 and thereafter the incidence is likely to taper down because of the preventive measures that are being taken.

Like in all cases of cancer, early detection and appropriate treatment improve the survival rate. On both counts the pleural mesothelioma patients are at a disadvantage. Symptoms take anywhere between 20 to 50 years to manifest. Because of this, the patients are generally in the fifty plus age group. And the outwardly noticed indications of the sickness are similar to that of several lesser ailments. This makes the diagnosis difficult. Because of all these, by the time the problem is detected, the cancer is likely to have spread. As yet there is no fully effective line of treatment. It is generally accepted that a combination therapy is better than monotherapy. A great deal of research is being done in this area.

A number of studies have been made about the survival rate among pleural mesothelioma patients. They all come to the same conclusion - the disease is almost always fatal. The lifespan of a person diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma is about six months to two years. There have been exceptions and their stories are inspiring. The life expectancy varies according to the stage (pleural mesothelioma has four different phases) and the type. One research based on the histologic (tissue structure)tests shows a median survival of 11 months - 9.4 months for sarcomatous, 12.5 months for epithelial and 11 months for mixed.

Several inspirational books are available for the patient to read and fortify himself. Also helpful are chat rooms with others in the same condition.

Pleural Mesothelioma [] provides detailed information on Malignant Diffuse Pleural Mesothelioma, Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma, Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma Survival Rate, Mesothelioma Pleural Brachytherapy and more. Pleural Mesothelioma is affiliated with Peritoneal Mesothelioma Lawyers [].

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Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma

Malignant pleural mesothelioma is a cancer of the thin layer of tissue that lines the chest and lungs. It is a rare form of cancer that is mostly associated with exposure to asbestos. Malignant pleural mesothelioma is a fast-moving cancer with a median survival time of between one and two years.

The majority of mesotheliomas are associated with asbestos exposure. Asbestos was used widely in the United States for insulation, and while awareness of its harmful effects is increasing, asbestos can still be found in older buildings. People who work in industries using asbestos in some form, such as insulation manufacturers, insulation workers, and ship builders, may be at increased risk to develop mesotheliomas. The time between exposure and development of a cancer may be decades, which is why it is usually diagnosed in older people. More men than women get this type of cancer. Close contacts of people who have been exposed to asbestos, such as family members, may also be at risk.

Some symptoms of this cancer are increasing breathlessness, pain in the chest or under the ribcage, an abdominal lump or swelling, fever and unexplained weight loss. Imaging tests like a CT scan may show a collection of fluid in the pleural cavity of the chest. Pleural tissue and fluid is also tested to detect cancerous cells and certain chemicals that can rule out a diagnosis of pleural mesothelioma.

Depending on the extent of spread of cancer, malignant pleural mesotheliomas are conventionally treated with some combination of chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery to remove as much of the cancer as possible. Aggressive treatment strategies are the norm, though the exact treatment depends on how far the cancer has spread. A number of experimental treatments are currently being evaluated in clinical trials.

Malignant Mesothelioma [] provides detailed information about malignant mesothelioma, diffuse malignant pleural mesothelioma, malignant mesothelioma diagnosis, malignant mesothelioma lawyer and more. Malignant Mesothelioma is the sister site of Peritoneal Mesothelioma Lawyers [].

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