The Staging Methods For Mesothelioma

The Staging Methods For Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma is a cancer with a high fatality rate. It attacks the different linings of the body, which can include the membrane of the heart, abdomen, lungs, and even testicles. This deadly disorder is most often caused by exposure to asbestos, but mesothelioma may take decades to appear after your exposure.

As with any type of cancer, doctors must do many tests after your initial diagnosis to determine the stage of your cancer. Figuring out the progression of your disease is important so that doctors know exactly how aggressively they should treat your disorder.

With mesothelioma, there are three different ways to determine the stage of the cancer. These are the TNM, Brigham, and Butchart staging systems. These three methods look at different aspects of cancer to predict the spread of the disease.

The Staging Methods For Mesothelioma

TNM. This is the primary staging system for cancer, developed by the American Joint Committee on Cancer, or AJCC. The T stands for tumor, and it refers to the size and spread of the tumor. N is for the spread to lymph nodes. Lastly, M is for malignancy. Malignant tumors are ones that can spread from the bloodstream to organs much further away in the body. Malignant tumors are the deadly tumors, whereas benign tumors cannot spread and are not typically considered fatal.

This is actually the newest staging system for malignant mesothelioma. It was developed in Boston, Massachusetts, at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute/Brigham and Women's Hospital Thoracic Oncology Program. It is similar to the TNM method in that it considers the spread of cancer to the lymph nodes. The Brigham system's main goal is to determine whether the mesothelioma can be treated, or if the tumors can be removed by surgery.

Butchart. The Butchart system of staging is the oldest method to gauge the spread of mesothelioma-specific cancer. It was developed by cardiothoracic surgeon Eric Butchart in the 1970s, and it looks mainly at the size and spread of the primary tumor mass. It is a very helpful methodology that is still used today due to its simplicity.

After doctors have determined what stage of mesothelioma you have, you will have to discuss your treatment options. This may include surgery to remove the tumors, radiation to kill the cancerous cells, or chemotherapy. If you do not want to have a traditional treatment, you can turn to clinical trials and alternative methods like acupuncture or massage.

Mesothelioma can be a devastating disease. If you or someone you know has suffered from this terrible disorder as a result of illegal asbestos exposure, you should speak to a lawyer about possible financial compensation. Article Source:

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