Chemotherapy and radiotherapy for pleural mesothelioma treatment should be considered if the cancer is in late stage, where surgical intervention is likely to be of any use due to spread (metastasis) of pleural mesothelioma to other parts of the body such as abdomen and other body parts.
Chemotherapy for treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma:
This is the most common form of treatment in pleural mesothelioma, as most of the patients with pleural mesothelioma are treated with chemotherapy, even if surgery and/or radiotherapy is used for management of pleural mesothelioma. Chemotherapy must be used in late stages of the disease, when surgery will have little or no effect in treatment of pleural mesothelioma due to spread of the disease in distant parts of the body. There are several chemotherapeutic agents which are useful in treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma, but at present USFDA (United States Food and Drug Administration) approve only use of Cisplatin along with Alimta for treatment of pleural mesothelioma. Other chemotherapeutic agents are not approved by USFDA for treatment of pleural mesothelioma. There are several chemotherapeutic agents undergoing clinical trial to determine effectiveness of these chemotherapeutic agents, such as Gemcitabine, Navelbine in treatment of pleural mesothelioma.
Radiotherapy for treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma:
Radiotherapy or radiation therapy is also commonly used modality in treatment of pleural mesothelioma, especially in the late stages, as is used in treatment of other forms of cancer. Generally radiotherapy is used in combination with surgery or chemotherapy or with both for best results in pleural mesothelioma. External beam radiation is used to cause mutation of tumor cells within the body and slow their growth and spread.
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