Getting the overall profile and background of patients is a helpful way through which doctors come up with a sound diagnosis. A patient’s work history speaks much about the kind of diseases he can develop later in life. Those who have spent their lifetimes in industries, factories or construction sites and have been exposed to asbestos are more likely to manifest mesothelioma cancer symptoms, even 15 to 50 years after. This is what makes this disease very alarming because it can catch the patient off guard. In most cases, detection occurs when cancer has reached a terminal stage and malignant cells have already spread all over the body.
Mesothelioma cancer may be pleural (lungs), peritoneal (abdomen) or pericardial (heart/chest area).
On a general note, this article presents the most common symptoms of mesothelioma cancer, to wit:
- Fatigue and lack of energy.
The patient may notice shortness of breath (dyspnea) out of lack of energy while doing only minimal physical activities. This is wrought by reduced respiratory function.
- Intense coughing and febrile conditions.
Fever is an indication of infection. When tumor has grown into considerable proportions, infection takes place and the patient experiences fever. Meanwhile, coughing is a coping mechanism that can be attributed to the tightening airways in the chest.
- Pain in the abdomen, chest, or lungs.
The lining membranes of these organs are the ones targeted by mesothelioma and hence, pain in these areas is experienced. Progression of the disease may also entail enlargement and tenderness of the organs or body parts. Chest pain may also be wrought by the thickening of the pericardium.
- Lumps within the chest, lung or abdomen areas.
These tumors develop along these target areas.
- Pleural Effusions.
These are abnormal fluid buildup and accumulation in the lungs. When they reach a certain level, the fluid has to be drained to prevent further complications.
- Loss of appetite. Because of this, patients lose weight fast.
Indications for Metastatic Spread
It may be well to note that not all symptoms of the disease are fixed on the organ that is targeted. Malignancy may invade the lymph nodes and occurs in generally 44 percent of recorded cases. A patient with an advanced stage of mesothelioma may exhibit dysphagia or the spitting up of blood during coughing, neurological syndromes, nerve involvement in the arm, or laryngeal nerve palsy. The patient may become paraplegic in cases where malignant cells get to the spinal area. Another condition that may arise and indicate advanced stage is hypoglycemia or abnormally low sugar levels in the blood.
Timetable of Symptoms
Constant asbestos exposure, inhalation, or ingestion has been pointed out as the primary and leading cause of mesothelioma cancer. Unfortunately, the cancer may manifest even years or decades later and usually in its advanced stage, leaving the patient flat-footed and unprepared. This latency period works the same way in practically all types of mesothelioma, whether pleural, peritoneal, or pericardial. However, recent medical investigations reveal a shorter latency period for peritoneal mesothelioma.
However, some patients who had to go through mesothelioma cancer testify that cannabis or medical marijuana helped them cope with the cancer on their way to recovery. Of course, this is still subject to a doctor consultation, which is why you need to visit a MMJ cannabis clinic just to verify the facts as soon as you notice the tell-tale signs. It never pays to wait until one’s condition intensifies and worsens because it may be too late by then.