Mesothelioma is an uncommon form of cancer that is related to asbestos. It usually forms on the protective tissues that cover organs like the heart, lungs and abdomen. The symptoms can be classified into two major sections; early stages and the late stages.
When do Mesothelioma Symptoms emerge?
These symptoms mostly develop due to the cancer itself and may be related to the treatment administered. The symptoms materialize slowly and are mostly assumed to be common illnesses. Though they do not manifest themselves in a more explicit manner, they can cause a great deal of harm especially as the cancer will have developed to a later and more dangerous stage. They tend to advance along with the cancer, and it is critical that they are well managed. These symptoms are divided into two;
- Early stage symptoms
- Late stage symptoms
Early stage symptoms
Among the very first symptoms include shortness of breath, abdominal and chest pains, but all these are dependent on the cancer location. The Mesothelioma tumors develop as small nodules on the wall lining on the lungs or abdomen. After this, is only when the symptoms begin to come into sight as the tumors press against the chest or the abdominal cavity. Among them include;dry cough, wheezing, pain in the chest or abdomen and pleural effusion.
Pleural effusion is brought along by tumors which have spread to the lymphatic system which inhibits the draining of fluids from the pleural lining. It is nearly impossible to distinguish the symptoms accurately as the disease does not provide early signs. Thus it is vital to inform your doctor concerning any possible exposure to asbestos so that you can get cancer screenings that can catch the disease at an early stage which offers a fighting chance against the disease.
Late stage symptoms
These are symptoms which occur when then the cancer is at stage three or four. At this point, the cancer has spread to most of the parts or whole organs. Usually, the pain increases to extended levels with some patients reported to have to take morphine in order to lessen the pain. Also, there is a loss of appetite that consequently translates to a loss of weight and a patient also exhibits anemic signs. With the chest being affected breathing also is obstructed and a patient may develop respiratory complications. Difficulty in breathing also arises and happens when the full expansion of the lungs is restricted due to the tumors. Additionally, the cancer treatment also has some of its effects which end when the treatment is at the closing stages.
To sum up, tackling the symptoms can significantly aid in improving the general outcome. It is prudent to go for cancer screenings as an early prognosis helps catch the cancer at a stage that is easily handled. In case you are diagnosed with the disease it is better to consult a palliative care specialist who will manage the symptoms and help in improving the quality of life. Also ensure you make adequate visits to your oncologist.