Thursday, November 27, 2008

Mesothelioma Diagnosis Is Very Systematic

Mesothelioma Diagnosis Is Very Systematic

Mesothelioma is a very serious form of cancer that occurs on the mesothelium (a membrane that covers and protects most of the internal organs of the body.).

This rare cancer has only one known cause called asbestos which is a naturally occurring mineral. People, who become victims, are said to have frequently inhaled this mineral's dust either in the mines, factories or in construction works.

This disease might take years to materialize but when it does, patients will show different symptoms depending on the type and stage of infection.

Mesothelioma diagnosis is confirmed to be complicated by the doctors, because the symptoms might resemble those of similar conditions such as asbestosis.

When a patient consults the doctor for the first time, both of them have got no surety that the disease is mesothelioma. The diagnosis therefore starts:

Review of the patient's medical history

After the doctor listens to the number of symptoms given by the patient whom he does not know to start with, it becomes essential for him to inquire about his medical history.

He may ask question that tend to probe the patient's exposure to asbestos so he form the bases for diagnosis. If for sure, he worked in a plant that manufacture's asbestos products or is still working in a place that puts him in such a risk, then mesothelioma becomes a potential suspect.

Physical examination

A physical examination will enable the doctor to start the proper diagnosis process where a number of things will be done.

X- ray- the X-ray reveal pleural thickening usually seen after the asbestos exposure and raises more suspicion of mesothelioma.

CT or CAT scan

This represent a chain of comprehensive pictures of areas inside the body developed by a computer linked to an X-ray machine.

In an MRI, a powerful magnet linked to a computer is used to make thorough pictures of areas inside the body. These pictures are viewed on a monitor and can also be printed. These should show if there are malignant cells or not.
Biopsy

A biopsy is required to confirm a diagnosis that the doctor performs on mesothelioma. The surgeon or a medical oncologist, who specializes on cancer diagnosis and treatment, removes a sample of tissue for examination under the power of microscope by a pathologist. This can be done in diverse ways depending on where this cancer is suspected to be.

Thoracoscopy

Here the doctor uses a tool called a thorascope after making a small cut on the victim's chest, where it is inserted between the two ribs to obtain the tissue material.

Peritoneoscopy

If the doctor want to obtain tissue sample from the abdominal cavity, he performs this procedure using a peritoneoscope. This is inserted through a small hole that a doctor makes on the abdomen and is able to explore and grab some tissue samples.

If these procedures do not give up enough tissue, more widespread diagnostic surgery may be compulsory. If the diagnosis is mesothelioma however, the doctor will then want to find out how far the cancer has gone. To be able to do this (staging), more special test will be performed.

Localized

Mesothelioma that will only be found on the membrane surface where it originated.
Classified- this is mesothelioma cancer that has spread further than the original membrane surface to the rest of the body parts like the lymph nodes, chest wall, lungs and abdominal organs.

By: Esteri Maina

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1 comment:

Mberenis said...

When I was diagnosed with mesothelioma, I knew I needed to suit my employer for exposing me to asbestos. Thank you for making this blog, it along with others has helped me greatly. Here is the other one I used to help find a lawyer for anyone out there that needed help like me.

Finding a Mesothelioma Lawyer

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