Epithelial mesothelioma is a mesothelioma cell type. It’s also called epithelioid. It best used in treatment for showing less aggressiveness in comparison to a sarcomatoid mesothelioma. The type of mesothelioma a victim is diagnosed with is named after the area it forms. Pleural mesothelioma is a type of cancer that develops in the pleural lining around your lungs.
Prognosis and treatment for mesothelioma lung vary. For instance, malignant pleural mesothelioma is an aggressive kind of cancer arising from the membrane that covers the inner side of the ribs and the lungs. Symptoms of malignant pleural mesothelioma include cough, breathlessness, fever, weight loss, chest pain, and fatigue. Treatment for each patient differs. It is based on the severity of the disease. The goal of treatment may be to reduce symptoms (palliative) or to eliminate the disease (curative).
What Do Epithelioid Mesothelioma Cells Look Like?
Every epithelial mesothelioma cell looks cubic or square. Epithelioid cells stick closely together and don’t move, so they have a low probability of spreading. This doesn’t apply to sarcomatoid cells. The unique features of epithelial mesothelioma are the reason why it has the most accurate diagnosis among all types of mesothelioma cancers.
A series of the procedure is required to diagnose epithelioid mesothelioma accurately. Mesothelioma symptoms can take years before they appear. This is why patients may not know that they have mesothelioma until it is too late. If someone has been dangerously exposed to hazardous asbestos before and you’re experiencing some of the common symptoms of mesothelioma, it is best that you see a doctor as soon as possible.
Epithelioid Mesothelioma Symptoms
Shortness of breath, lack of appetite, and cough are early symptoms of peritoneal or pleural mesothelioma. More serious symptoms appear as this condition advances. Other symptoms include persistent, dry cough, coughing up blood, hoarseness, feeling full even without ingesting anything, anemia, low blood oxygen levels, nausea as well as fatigue.
Treatment Options for Epithelial Mesothelioma
Epithelial mesothelioma responds best to treatment, and patients diagnosed with this disease have more clinical trial and treatment options. Here are the treatment options available for epithelioid mesothelioma.
- Multimodal – Multimodal therapy is a combination of 2 or more therapies. The Annals of Thoracic Surgery 2019 revealed that this treatment method provided considerably better outcomes for patients who were diagnosed with epithelial malignant pleural mesothelioma.
- Surgery – Surgery is usually used to treat epithelial mesothelioma. Some patients, however, may not be qualified to undergo surgery due to other health reasons. Surgery is not the same for every kind of mesothelioma. For instance, peritonectomy is used to remove peritoneal tumors.
- Radiation Therapy – Radiation therapy may be used together with chemotherapy and surgery or alone. Although it won’t cure mesothelioma, radiation therapy can help reduce pain as well as manage symptoms. This treatment option is used when tumors have attacked the chest wall or when surgery is possible.
- Chemotherapy – A combination of carboplatin or cisplatin and Alimta is the standard chemotherapy for treating the disease. It is FDA-approved. Carboplatin, gemcitabine, mitomycin, and pemetrexed can be used to treat peritoneal mesothelioma. Chemotherapy drugs are not consistently effective for testicular or pericardial mesothelioma because these kinds of mesothelioma are scarce that they haven’t been studied a lot.
How to Find the Right Mesothelioma Treatment
Patients who look for and get the right treatment can expect good results. How can you find the treatment plan that fits your needs? If you don’t want the standard chemotherapy combination of cisplatin and Alimta, you can closely work together with your attending physician in finding an alternative chemotherapy plan fitting to your needs.
Many patients with mesothelioma don’t get treatment parallel with their state’s guidelines. You may not experience such a problem if you visit mesothelioma center that has physicians who specialize in mesothelioma and see many patients who have this disease. Their physicians have extensive experience and knowledge about such disease and can develop the best treatment plan for your condition.
Early symptoms of epithelial mesothelioma like fatigue and cough imitate less serious respiratory problems. Physicians may recommend chest scans to determine the cause of your symptoms. Imaging, however, can’t identify the cause of anomalous chest areas. It only reveals irregularities. Even after results come out, it takes time to book a surgery with a surgeon.
These factors may prevent the doctor from getting a tissue sample. Only a tumor biopsy, frequently obtained through video-assisted thoracic surgery or thoracoscopy, results in precise identification of epithelial mesothelioma. Sharing any history of exposure to asbestos with your doctor can help reduce diagnostic delays and speed up treatment.
Immunohistochemistry helps detect proteins on the cells’ surface. These proteins determine the type of cancer cell. Pathologists use immunohistochemistry to identify and differentiate epithelioid mesothelioma from adenocarcinoma. Immunohistochemistry confirms the presence or absence of mesothelioma cell markers, which helps doctors come up with the most accurate diagnosis possible.