There is a new, innovative imaging technology that has been developed by a doctor at Massachusetts General Hospital that is being tried on patients with peritoneal mesothelioma patients to establish the ideal dosing levels and assess how effective it can be.
If it turns out to be successful, it could offer major improvements in the rate of survival for patients who have been diagnosed with deadly mesothelioma cancer.
System Has Already Tested Successfully on Breast Cancer Patients
The Lumicell System, which started testing on peritoneal mesothelioma patients in April 2019, was first developed by Dr. James Cusack, a professor of surgery at Harvard University Medical School. It has now been tested on women with serious breast cancers that are undergoing lumpectomy surgery and is also being studied now for the treatment of some ovarian cancers, as well as gastrointestinal cancer and appendiceal cancer. The new system of treatment utilizes molecular imaging technology to accurately identify tumor cells during surgery. Earlier reviews indicated that it is effective at pinpointing difficult to detect malignant cells outside the margin of the tissue sample.
Imaging Could Cease Recurrence of Peritoneal Mesothelioma
In a news release that was issued at the clinical trial for peritoneal mesothelioma, Cusack noted that the feasibility study is a vital first step to determine if the Lumicell System will be able to improve the quality of life for people who suffer from peritoneal metastasis. He said his team would comparing the imaging results detected at a molecular level with regular microscopic evaluation to boost surgical outcomes for patients who have peritoneal mesothelioma.
The purpose of using this new technology to treat some forms of mesothelioma is that by being able to identify microscopic cells that remain after the first surgical approach, it allows the surgeon to take out the additional cells and avoid the need for more surgery and minimize the risk of the cancer coming back. Tests that were performed on more than 200 breast cancer patients identified a residual tumor that could have been missed with other techniques. Doctors who worked on the study found the Lumicell System is effective for real time ID of residual cancer intraoperatively. The system involves using an IV injection a solution known as LUM015, which is then ID’d by a LUM imaging device. The clinical test will find the best dosage level that is effective.
About Peritoneal Mesothelioma
Peritoneal mesothelioma is sometimes referred to as abdominal mesothelioma. It is a form of the disease that grows in the lining of the abdomen, which is called the peritoneum. It accounts for up to 20% of all mesothelioma cases in the world, with about 500 cases in the US each year.
Peritoneal form is the #2 most common form of the disease. While it is usually fatal, it does have a more favorable prognosis than other forms of the disease. New treatments, such as cytoreductive surgery and HIPC, which is a heated chemotherapy wash, have made survival times longer, with many patients able to live with the disease for seven years or more.
As with all forms of mesothelioma, peritoneal mesothelioma is caused by asbestos exposure. A small number of people with a genetic predisposition may also develop this form of mesothelioma after being exposed to erionite.
We do not really understand how asbestos works its way into the abdomen, but it is assumed it occurs through lymphatic transport or ingestion.
Asbestos fibers that get into the peritoneum can lead to inflammation that leads to cancer. As the tumors get bigger, they will eventually spread throughout the abdomen and get to other parts of the body. (Maacenter.org)
Regardless of the type of mesothelioma, you are diagnosed with, it takes as long as 50 years for you to be diagnosed. Even when the cancer first starts to show signs, your peritoneal symptoms can be confused with the systems of less serious diseases.
Some of the common signs of peritoneal mesothelioma are:
- Difficulties with breathing
- Weight loss
- Loss of appetite
- Bowel obstruction
Patients who are experiencing the above symptoms should be sure to tell their doctor of any possible exposure to asbestos in the past, even if they think it occurred decades ago.
It should be noted that all forms of the disease can be hard to diagnose, leaving a patient with a complete misdiagnosis for months. This leads to treatment delays that can be fatal.
About Wrongful Death Mesothelioma Lawsuits
In most cases of peritoneal mesothelioma, the disease is due to the negligence of a company. When a person dies for this disease, the estate of the individual could have the right to file a wrongful death mesothelioma lawsuit against the company that exposed the person to asbestos, or sold that company products that contained asbestos.
Keep in mind that it is important that the filing of a wrongful death lawsuit is very sensitive in terms of time. Every state features a statute of limitations to file a wrongful death claim. In most states, the limit may be as little as two years from the date of death.
Also know that filing a wrongful death lawsuit for a mesothelioma asbestos claim is very complex. It is not something you should attempt on your own. When the person dies of the disease, any legal decisions about the legal action are often handled by the estate representative. This may be an immediate family member and is most often the spouse, but it does not have to be a blood relative.
Usually, the most common estate representatives in a wrongful death lawsuit are the spouse or partner; children, grandparents or parents.
Bear in mind that awards for a wrongful death lawsuit will go to the estate and do not get sent to the estate representative. So, payments from a verdict or settlement are often divided among family members. This is the same as assets are divided after a person passes away.
The amount that is awarded in a wrongful death action could be quite a bit less than a personal injury claim. This is due to the fact that the plaintiff in a personal injury lawsuit has ongoing expenses, such as medical bills, lost earnings, as well as extended emotional and physical suffering.
In many situations, the amount that is awarded for a wrongful death claim is less than a personal injury claim. This is because a plaintiff in a personal injury case usually has ongoing medical bills, lost wages, travel expenses, and emotional and physical suffering.
- New Imaging Technology May Improve Effectiveness of Peritoneal Mesothelioma Surgery. (2019). Retrieved from https://mesothelioma.net/mesothelioma-news/new-imaging-technology-may-improve-effectiveness-of-peritoneal-mesothelioma-surgery/
- Peritoneal Mesothelioma. (n.d.).Retrieved from https://www.maacenter.org/mesothelioma/types/peritoneal-mesothelioma/