When your mesothelioma cancer has reached its final stages, your doctor may suggest palliative care—which means they will do everything possible to make you as comfortable as you can be.
Some of the methods your doctor might suggest for pleural or peritoneal mesothelioma include:
- Radiotherapy – can help alleviate severe chest pain
- Pleurodesis – a method of blocking the accumulation of fluid in the pleura (the space between your lungs). In cases where this fails, your doctor may insert a catheter into the pleural space to allow fluid to drain continuously
- Stent placement – to help patients continue to eat in comfort
- Nutritional care – to combat the effects of malnutrition
- Counseling – to help the patient and the family better understand the disease
At the same time, your doctor may suggest you return to your own home to be with your family and have hospice care to help with your comfort. Hospice care is given by trained professionals who know various ways to keep a patient as pain-free and alert as possible until death occurs. It is not meant to delay or to encourage the process, but instead to relieve the family of the burden of constant care and help the patient maintain dignity and find peace.
Symptoms of stomach cancer
If you have malignant peritoneal mesothelioma, the type of palliative care your doctor or hospice team will recommend will be much like what you would receive for symptoms of stomach cancer. Those might include pain, obstruction, bloating, nausea and an inability to eat much food. You might also have trouble swallowing and be progressively losing weight.
All the methods listed above can be useful in helping you control pain and discomfort in the final stage of your mesothelioma cancer.
Lung cancer symptoms
Palliative care for lung cancer symptoms can be very complex. Coughing, wheezing, difficulty breathing, and chest pain may be due to the pleural mesothelioma cancer itself and/or the affected organs to which the tumor has spread. And other symptoms may arise from treatment itself or other co-existing conditions. Make sure your doctor is well-trained in palliative care so that s/he can diagnose what is causing your symptoms and treat you accordingly. Don’t hesitate to ask questions about the doctor’s philosophy about pain control and patient comfort—you deserve the most compassionate and skilled care available.
Investigate your legal rights
No matter what stage your mesothelioma is in—whether you have had early detection or you are currently in the palliative care stage—you may have the option of pursuing an asbestos mesothelioma lawsuit. See Choosing a Mesothelioma Attorney.
At Hendlerlaw our lawyers have spent several years helping mesothelioma patients recover compensation and find greater peace with the disease. We are able to help patients in many states including Alabama, Ohio and more. Our main office is in Austin, Texas, but we have a 24-hour telephone line where you can get information about treatment, centers of excellence, and mesothelioma lawsuits. Please call us at 800.443.6353.