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Diagnosing Mesothelioma

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Diagnosing Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma is a cancer that commonly appears in
people who have been around asbestos at some time in
their lives. The most common type is pleural
mesothelioma which occurs in the pleura or outer
lining of the lungs. It can be difficult to diagnose
mesothelioma because it shares the same symptoms as
many other diseases.

The first step to diagnosing mesothelioma is with
X-ray, CT scans, or MRIs. If something unusual is
detected, a biopsy will be needed. A biopsy is when a
surgeon or medical oncologist retrieves a sample of
tissue from the area that is believed to be cancerous.

This will usually be from an area of the lower lungs.
It is thoroughly examined by microscope by a
pathologist. This isn’t as painful as it sounds as the
area is numbed and a very small instrument takes the
physical sample.

If it ends up being true mesothelioma, the doctor then
needs to learn what stage it’s in. This requires more
scans and testing to see how large the cancerous
growth is and helps determine the best route to take
in regards to treatment.

Being diagnosed with mesothelioma is definitely a life
changing event and counseling as well as support
groups may be very beneficial. It is important to
remember that any cancer has a good rate of success if
caught early.

Treatment could be anything from a simple surgical
procedure to a couple sessions with chemotherapy or
radiation. Many lawsuits are in progress relating to
asbestos exposure so if you meet some of their
conditions, you may qualify for free or reduced
medical care.