Asbestos symptoms present early stage traits that resemble non-life-threatening characteristics such as those associated with the flu or common cold. Once late stage symptoms present, most mesothelioma patients will only have two years to fight for their lives with a barrage of medical treatments and medications.
What Mesothelioma Patients Can Expect
Victims of mesothelioma present symptoms that are based on the type and stage of cancer. Symptoms are caused by fluid build-up which leads to irritation in the lungs or stomach created by the growth of the cancer. Victims have to be aware if they had possible asbestos exposure that asbestos symptomsthey easily mistake for the flu or a cold or even pneumonia could very well be mesothelioma. Early detection definitely is directly related to a mesothelioma prognosis consisting of more than one to two years.
The most common asbestos symptoms for pleural mesothelioma are chest pain caused by pleural effusions (fluid build-up in the lungs), pain while breathing and a persistent cough. The most common asbestos symptoms for peritoneal mesothelioma consist of ascites (fluid build-up around the abdomen), unexplained weight loss, stomach pains, and loss of appetite. The most common asbestos symptoms for pericardial mesothelioma are made up of anything from heart murmurs to chest pains; even pericardial effusion (fluid build-up around the heart).
Early stages of pleural mesothelioma do not yield asbestos symptoms. The ones that do show are not really specific to the disease and could be mistaken for common illnesses such as pneumonia, asthma, influenza and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). Pleural effusions are very common in discomfort associated with mesothelioma. Many victims wait up to 6 months before consulting a physician when they have these symptoms.
Symptoms and Treatments – Mesothelioma
Other less common asbestos symptoms that can present themselves in the early stages are fever, body aches, unexplained weight loss, fatigue and lumps under the skin on the chest.
Late stages of more specific symptoms also include symptoms from the earlier stages. In stages 3 and 4 of mesothelioma, symptoms still present themselves as difficulty breathing, chest pain and coughing only they are more severe. This is when most patients are diagnosed.
During these stages, many treatments can be used by a medical professional to relieve pain and discomfort associated with various asbestos symptoms. Depending upon the individual health of the patient, a doctor may recommend to drain fluid build-ups surrounding crucial organs in an effort to help reduce chest pain and make breathing easier in patients. Doctors will have to decide if this plus other elective treatments can help a patient live more comfortably. Other therapies chosen by doctors to help mesothelioma patients include radiation, chemotherapy, surgery or any combination of them to provide a better quality of life for a patient.