Penn Medicine physicians determine the best treatment options for mesothelioma depending upon the stage of the cancer. Along with age, general health, and the location of the cancer, three primary staging systems are used to assess how far mesothelioma has spread. Four stages describe the progression of the disease, and treatments options may vary depending upon the stage of the cancer.
Stage I Mesothelioma Treatment
Mesothelioma is localized in this stage and surgery is most commonly recommended to remove the tumor and affected tissue. A pleurectomy or extrapleural pneumonectomy are procedures that remove the tumor from the lung and nearby tissue. An assessment will be made to determine if chemotherapy or radiation treatment is necessary. Clinical trials may also be considered in this stage.
Stage II Mesothelioma Treatment
Surgery may also be performed in Stage II to remove as much of the tumor as possible. However, because the cancer has spread, surgery may be performed to relieve symptoms as opposed to curing the disease. Chemotherapy and radiation therapy are the most common treatments recommended. A variety of alternative treatments may be used to slow the progression of the disease and help manage the pain and stress associated with conventional treatments.
Stage III Mesothelioma Treatment
Treatment options recommended for Stage III typically focus on relieving pain, prolonging life, and improving the quality of life. Clinical trials may be beneficial in aiding the quest to find a cure.
Stage 4 Mesothelioma Treatment
This is the most advanced stage of mesothelioma. Pain management and keeping the patient comfortable is the primary focus. At this advanced stage, therapies such as chemotherapy and radiation are not typically considered. Many families consider the supportive network offered through a local Hospice program. Medications are also available to treat pain and suffering.
Need More Information on Mesothelioma Treatments by Stage?
Contact the Penn Mesothelioma program today. A Nurse/Patient Navigator can help you understand when treatments by stage is appropriate for mesothelioma, as well as all the other available treatment options.
Contact a mesothelioma Nurse/Patient Navigator at Penn today. Call 215-662-9697