Pleural mesothelioma is a serious cancer of the lining of the lungs. This lining is a smooth membrane called pleura. You body has two pleura and the space between them is called the pleural space. Pleura help in the smooth movement of the lungs as we inhale or exhale. It does so by producing a lubricating fluid. It also provides protection to the lungs.
Pleural mesothelioma is the most common among mesothelioma cancers and almost 75% of total mesothelioma patients suffer from pleural mesothelioma. Some symptoms of pleural mesothelioma are persistent cough, difficulty in breathing, weakness, loss of weight, loss of appetite, chest pains, lower back pain and difficulty in swallowing. In most cases of pleural mesothelioma, a fluid accumulates in the pleural space. Pleural mesothelioma can be very painful and uncomfortable in the later stages. Prognosis of pleural mesothelioma is very bleak and the patient survives for not more than 12-24 months.
Asbestos exposure is the only reason that medical science has enumerated as a cause of pleural mesothelioma. Asbestos is a natural fibrous mineral that was widely used in construction process, railroad, boilers, shipyards, insulation and many other manufacturing processes. The person working in asbestos related manufacturing processes, their family members and those residing near these processes are vulnerable to mesothelioma.
X-rays, CT Scan and bronchoscopy are the procedures for diagnosis of pleural mesothelioma. Bronchoscopy is process wherein the doctors examine the pleural membrane by inserting a bronchoscope in the patient’s body. Thereafter they take out a tissue from the affected are and examine it for presence of malignant pleural mesothelioma cells. This examination is known as biopsy.
Chemotherapy, radiation therapy and surgery are some treatments available for patients suffering from pleural mesothelioma. These treatment methods are very expensive. However, the patients suffering from this deadly disease have the right to file lawsuits to recover medical expenses and damages for pain and suffering from the organization that is responsible for asbestos exposure. In many cease, courts have awarded handsome amounts as compensation to asbestos victims.