Mesothelioma treatment will be my focus today. Information on mesothelioma treatment, nutrition and lifestyle are what I will be writing. This topic is totally different from my usual specialization. i want to create more awareness about mesothelioma and its treatment because many Nigerians are not aware of this medical condition.
I will start with an overview of mesothelioma-a medical condition and then move on to Mesothelioma treatment, nutrition and lifestyle. No Recipe today (Lol). Happy Reading!
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Table of Contents
What Is Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is an aggressive rare type of cancer caused by inhaling asbestos fibers that affect the mesothelium- a protective lining covering the heart, lungs, and other internal organs.
The tissue that lines our lungs, heart, stomach, and other organs is called mesothelium. Mesothelioma is a tumor of that tissue. It normally starts in the lungs, but can also start in the abdomen or other organs. It can be malignant (cancer) or benign (not cancer).
Malignant mesothelioma is a rare but serious type of cancer. However, most people who get it have worked on jobs where they inhaled asbestos particles. It usually takes a long time for the disease to form after being exposed to asbestos,
Asbestos is the only cause of Mesothelioma, though there are other potential risk factors. Asbestos is a natural mineral once used in many products because of its durability and heat resistance.
In spite of the risks, asbestos is still being used today, and it can still be found in old buildings and products.
Due to a long inactive period, symptoms may take 10 – 50 years to develop after exposure. The disease mainly affects older individuals who were exposed while working with asbestos products.
Prognosis for mesothelioma is poor, there is no cure for this serious illness yet even though early discovery and new treatment provide relief and hope for many patients
Types of Mesothelioma
Mesothelioma is divided into different types based on tumor location. Mesothelioma cancer develops in the linings of certain organs or spaces within the body, known as the mesothelium.
There are four primary types of mesothelioma, which includes:
- Malignant pleural mesothelioma- involves tumors within the pleura (lung linings).
- Peritoneal mesothelioma- Peritoneal tumors develop in the peritoneum (abdominal linings),
- Pericardial mesothelioma- pericardial tumors build up within the pericardium (heart linings),
- Testicular mesothelioma- develops in the tunica vaginalis testis (testes linings).
Pleural mesothelioma is the most common, followed by peritoneal, pericardial and lastly, testicular mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma Early Symptoms
Signs and symptoms of mesothelioma vary depending on where the cancer occurs.
Pleural mesothelioma causes signs and symptoms which affects the tissue that surrounds the lungs, may include:
- Painful coughing
- Shortness of breath
- Unusual lumps of tissue under the skin on your chest
- Unexplained weight loss
- Peritoneal mesothelioma, which occurs in tissue in the abdomen, causes signs and symptoms that may include:
- Abdominal swelling
- Unexplained weight loss Chest pain
- Chest pain
- Abdominal pain
Pericardial mesothelioma which affects tissue that surrounds the heart can cause signs and symptoms such as chest pains and difficulty in breathing difficulty
Mesothelioma of tunica vaginalis, which affects tissue close to the testicles, may be first noticed as swelling or a mass on a testicle.
Other forms of mesothelioma
Symptoms and sign of other types of mesothelioma are uncertain since these forms of the disease are uncommon.
Mesothelioma treatment is same as other types of cancer. The common mesothelioma treatment is a multi modal approach of surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation.
In some cases, mesothelioma treatment can improve a patient’s prognosis and life expectancy as well.
Understanding Your Legal Rights
Since a lot of companies knowingly put employees at risk of asbestos exposure, mesothelioma patients and their loved ones have legal rights.
Filing a claim can help recover lost wages, cover treatment costs, and make sure companies are held accountable among other things. Talk to an attorney to learn about your compensation options.
Nutrition and Lifestyle after Mesothelioma Treatment.
Lifestyle choices can have a big impact on a patient’s comfort and overall prognosis depending on the type of mesothelioma you have been diagnosed with.
These include nutritional supplements or foods that may be helpful or supportive of their treatment or what physical activities they need to follow.
Patients are also like the knowledge about what they can do for themselves to improve their medical condition. This includes:
- Listen to Your Physician and Your Body
First and foremost, pay attention to the advice of your doctor. If you have been prescribed a specific dietary guideline to follow, please adhere to it. Same goes for physical activity stick to whatever prescriptions your doctor gave you.
It is also good to listen to your body when it tells you to eat or not eat something than to force yourself to eat and end up vomiting it all back minutes later.
- Eat Smaller Meals More Frequently
Secondly. eating three balanced meals per day is great but not for everybody especially during treatment.
You may not have the appetite at times or your appetite might be greatly decreased due to the treatment you are undergoing.
Therefore, it is always better to eat smaller meals at more frequent intervals to keep on.
- Endeavor To Maintain High Fiber Content
Thirdly, if you are experiencing digestive problems like constipation, increase your fibre intake.
Plant-based foods like oatmeal, bran, vegetables, and fruits all contain fiber and tend to have a mild or pleasant flavor.
This is which is ideal for someone who may be experiencing severe nausea due to chemotherapy.
- Eat More Solids, Fewer Liquids at Mealtime
Fourthly and most importantly, make mealtime count by focusing on filling up with wholesome food—and drinking fewer liquids especially if you are having trouble eating enough nourishing food, or keeping that food down.
- Nutritional Needs
While you are recovering from a mesothelioma treatment for example surgery, chemotherapy or radiation therapy, your body’s ability to digest and take in nutrition may undergo a radical transition.
It is very essential that you meet with a registered dietician, who will assist you to understand the symptoms that may interfere with your goals and how to get around them
- Supplement and Vitamins
Do not take any type of vitamins or minerals without first discussing it with your doctor. They may have a specific supplement that they prefer that you take to address a specific deficiency..
- Exercise and Activity
There are many vital benefits to getting up and moving around during and after cancer treatment.
If you are going to start any kind of exercise program, ensure that you discuss with your physician first.
- Fatigue from Cancer Treatment
Chemotherapy and radiation can give you a feeling of fatigue.. One of the best ways to get over this symptom is through a regular routine of aerobic exercise.
Coping with Mesothelioma and Finding support
It is important to know you are not alone as you learn about mesothelioma and move forward with the treatment. Envelop yourself with a positive support system, including other cancer patients in support groups as well as family and friends.
Attempt positive relaxation techniques to sustain good mental health, such as yoga, meditation, or any other activities you find relaxing.
Finally, even though lifestyle choices may not cure cancer, they make a huge difference. Avoid bad choices like drinking, and smoking, overworking or socializing too much.
In its place, make positive choices that will help your body heal, like good nutrition, good diet, exercise, relaxation techniques, and social support. These will help you feel better as your mesothelioma treatment works to beat cancer.