Malignant mesothelioma is a rare and aggressive cancer that affects the lining of the lungs, abdomen, or heart. It is primarily caused by exposure to asbestos fibers, and the disease has a poor prognosis. While surgery can be a viable option for some mesothelioma patients, it is not always effective, and success rates can vary depending on several factors.
Surgery for mesothelioma may be performed as a curative or palliative treatment, depending on the stage of the disease and the patient’s overall health. Curative surgery aims to remove all visible signs of cancer, while palliative surgery is used to relieve symptoms and improve quality of life.
One of the main factors that can affect the success rate of mesothelioma surgery is the stage of the disease at the time of the procedure. Mesothelioma is typically diagnosed in later stages, which can limit the effectiveness of surgery. In early-stage cases, surgery may be able to remove all visible signs of cancer and provide a better chance of long-term survival.
The location of the mesothelioma can also impact the success rate of surgery. Mesothelioma in the pleura (lining of the lungs) is the most common form of the disease, and surgical options include pleurectomy/decortication (P/D) and extrapleural pneumonectomy (EPP). In P/D, the surgeon removes the pleura and any visible signs of cancer, while in EPP, the entire lung and surrounding tissues are removed. The success rates for both procedures can vary depending on the patient’s overall health and the extent of the disease.
For peritoneal mesothelioma (affecting the lining of the abdomen), surgery options include cytoreductive surgery (CRS) and heated intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC). In CRS, the surgeon removes all visible signs of cancer in the abdomen, while in HIPEC, heated chemotherapy is circulated throughout the abdomen to kill any remaining cancer cells. Studies have shown that CRS and HIPEC can be an effective treatment for peritoneal mesothelioma, with some patients achieving long-term survival.
Another factor that can impact the success rate of mesothelioma surgery is the patient’s overall health and age. Patients who are younger and in good health are generally better candidates for surgery and may have a higher success rate. Other factors that can affect the success rate of surgery include the presence of other health conditions and the experience of the surgical team.
Overall, the success rate of mesothelioma surgery varies depending on several factors, including the stage and location of the disease, the patient’s overall health, and the experience of the surgical team. While surgery can be an effective treatment for some mesothelioma patients, it is not a cure, and the disease can recur even after successful surgery. Therefore, it is important for mesothelioma patients to work closely with their healthcare team to determine the best treatment options for their individual case.