Stage 4 Mesothelioma - Your Options are Limited

This month we will cover two sides of mesothelioma: the legal elements and the medical elements. Each side of this disease can be heavily daunting. One side of the coin gives you a diagnosis that in a large majority of the cases is fatal within 2 years. There are many obstacles to cover to prolong life and protect and preserve the quality of life that remains. The other side of the coin represents the law and the illegal exposure to asbestos that was the cause of your deadly illness. Most will want to legally pursue options to hold the parties of this exposure responsible and go after monetary compensation.

Your first inclination about asbestos-related illness will come from a medical diagnosis. Most people are devastated and do not know exactly where to begin. Finding a medical professional or specialist near you will be your first priority. Your next priority will be understanding the legal implications of the negligence of others afflicting you with a deadly disease and you will want to take legal recourse.

Both sides of this coin represent a battle – each with specific steps and understandings you must comprehend and master in order to win the war. This months’ blogs will help to empower you with information to cover both fronts.

Patients diagnosed with stage 4 mesothelioma cancer often have less than a year to live. Having conversations about end of life care may be a difficult task but is immensely beneficial to patients and family members. The diagnostic challenges for asbestos-related illnesses are great because most victims and their doctors have no idea the symptoms experienced are linked with a deadly disease until it has reached late stages. An advanced stage of any cancer means there is most likely no cure and palliative mesothelioma treatment will be used to control pain and severe symptoms. At this point, most care is geared around making the patient as comfortable as possible in the final months of life.

Receiving a stage 4 mesothelioma diagnosis is not only devastating for the patient but also for their family. Once the initial shock has dissipated, special conversations must be initiated that hugely benefit both patient and loved ones. Initial discussions about end of life are not easy but research has shown that if a patient can have this conversation, their desired care and choices have a better chance of occurring.

In order to start this dialogue, follow these simple steps listed below after a mesothelioma diagnosis:

Start speaking about having a directive that is final and will be used as a legal document to list all wishes regarding end of life care. Ensure the papers include specific instructions that cover all possible scenarios of what could occur.

Heavily research your particular type of stage 4 mesothelioma and what to expect after diagnosis. Don’t be shy about asking your doctors about pain therapies, interventions and hospice care.

As the disease progresses, make sure you are acquainted with the patients’ requests for care and keep medical staff informed about their final decisions.