5 Things to do After a Mesothelioma prognosis
A mesothelioma prognosis can be terrifying, overwhelming and stressful.
What type of treatment plan is going to be recommended?
How will I manage the financial effect of mesothelioma disease?
These and many other questions may arise in your mind. This makes it even hard to take a positive decision to cope with the prognosis.
Focusing on sensible actions to take now can help you get organized and move forward.
Learn more About the Mesothelioma
It’s important to understand that how mesothelioma affects your health and quality of life is the first step. Some people know exposure to asbestos is the main cause of mesothelioma but not more than that.
There are many types of mesothelioma, and the two most common, which account for nearly all mesothelioma diagnosis in the United States, are peritoneal and pleural.
Approximately 20 percent of mesothelioma cases are peritoneal and up to 75 percent are pleural.
The other two mesothelioma types are testicular and pericardial. These types of mesotheliomas are very rare compared with peritoneal and pleural disease. Together they account for less than 5 percent of mesothelioma cases in the U.S. If you or a loved one is showing signs of Stage 4 Mesothelioma symptoms, it is in their best interest to get in touch with a mesothelioma doctor.
Ask your doctor about the type and location of your mesothelioma.
If your disease is pleural mesothelioma, it may affect your ability to breathe deeply. You may want to ask for a referral to a respiratory therapist. Gentle stretching, movement, and breathing exercises can improve breathing.
Peritoneal mesothelioma can contribute to GI symptoms, such as feeling full early and inability to eat your favorite foods. A registered dietitian can develop a balanced diet plan to meet your needs and keep you strong for treatment. Stage 4 mesothelioma symptoms should be taken seriously if you or a loved one is showing signs of stage 4 mesothelioma symptoms we suggest that you consult with a mesothelioma specialist as soon as possible.
Get a Second Opinion from a Mesothelioma Specialist
Many cancer treatment facilities do not have a mesothelioma specialist on staff. This doesn’t mean people should immediately go somewhere else for cancer treatment. It simply reflects that mesothelioma is very rare.
Only a few oncologists are considered experts and specialists in mesothelioma treatment. Ask for a second opinion if your current cancer doctor does not have much experience treating mesothelioma.
Do not worry about annoying your doctor. Oncologists are used to consulting with others. They also request second opinions from other doctors.
Your cancer center can help you to find mesothelioma specialist for the second opinion as well. This might include sending scans, medical records and blood tests to the consulting physician.
With this information, the consulting physician may be able to provide additional insights into the best mesothelioma treatment for your situation.
A mesothelioma specialist can be an important link to learning more about clinical trials, too. A specialist may be conducting a study.
An experienced mesothelioma doctor also may have more awareness of ongoing trials appropriate for you to consider.
Search out for Social and Emotional Support
Emotional and social support should be an important part of your treatment if you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma. You can rely on family and friends for emotional support. People who love you want to help.
Having a rare disease can feel disconnecting. Sometimes, talking to an oncology social worker or therapist will allow you to talk openly about your fears without worrying about how your family or friends may react.
Talking face-to-face with someone may not feel right for you. An oncology social worker can be a great advocate. They can put you in touch with local, national and regional resources for coping with your disease.
Mesothelioma support groups are another option for people newly diagnosed with the disease and for people who have been living with it for some time. Mesothelioma is rare, so your cancer center may not have one.
Strengthen Your Body for Treatment
According to a March 2018 article published in The American Journal of Industrial Medicine, taking advantage of supportive therapies reduces distress for mesothelioma patients. Physical therapy and a healthy diet plan were approved for their positive effects on patients.
These results support that, regardless of your treatment plan, you can take steps to keep your body strong and regardless of the physical challenges ahead.
Mesothelioma treatment is more of a marathon than a sprint. Sometimes these treatments are delivered together.
Respiratory therapists are an important part of an extensive mesothelioma treatment team. Ask for a referral to a respiratory therapist if you’re experiencing shortness of breath or other breathing difficulties.
Many patients and family members don’t realize, even after breathing difficulties occur, there are steps to improve breathing function. A qualified respiratory therapist can develop a plan that can best meet your needs.
Keeping your body strong with good nutrition is another important part of mesothelioma care. You need fuel to heal, maintain immunity and rebuild your body during and after treatment. Food is that fuel.
Make eating well a priority. Ask to see a dietitian if you are losing weight without trying or having problems eating enough. Your doctor or nurse may tell you to simply eat more.
A dietitian can take a comprehensive diet history, estimate your unique protein and calorie needs, and learn about your likes and dislikes. This information will be used to create a nutrition plan best suited to you.