Mesothelioma is often confused with other diseases, the signs of mesothelioma are general and non-specific. Because it is often hard to diagnose and it is very aggressive the prognosis is often fatal. If you suspect that you have been exposed to asbestos and start experiencing any of these symptoms you need to contact your doctor immediately.
Signs of Mesothelioma
The two most common forms of this type of cancer are peritoneal mesothelioma and pleural mesothelioma. Peritoneal mesothelioma is when the cancer has developed in the organs in your abdomen, while pleural mesothelioma is when the cancer grows in the chest cavity and the lungs. Both of these types of cancer are very different and the symptoms are going to be unique. Here is a video showing the symptoms of mesothelioma.
Pleural mesothelioma is the more common of the two and it can include symptoms like coughing fits, fever, weight loss, chest pains, difficult breathing along with the body being unable to regulate your temperature. On the other hand peritoneal mesothelioma is far less common, but these symptoms include weight loss, blockages in the colon, problems with blood not clotting, fever and there will be severe pain in the abdominal area. While these same symptoms are common with many other diseases you need to have your doctor rule out whether you have this type of cancer.
There are a number of tests that your doctor can do to determine if you have mesothelioma. Be very upfront with all of the signs and symptoms you may have and if you have ever been exposed to asbestos. The doctor can then use some diagnostic test such as CAT scans, X-ray or an MRI. All of these will allow him to have a look at your abdomen and lungs to determine if there are any abnormalities and give him the clearest picture.
If your doctor finds a tumor or any abnormalities using the diagnostic tests the next step will be a biopsy. Like the tests there are several types of biopsies they can perform including some that are non-invasive. They can use a small needle to extract liquid from the growth, they can also perform minor surgery to remove a portion of the growth to find out if it is indeed mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma is extremely aggressive and you need to determine right away if you indeed have mesothelioma. After a diagnosis treatment needs to begin as soon as possible. The earlier it is detected the better your chances of survival become. Get your symptoms looked at as soon as possible.