Patients suffering from mesothelioma rarely manifest symptoms at the early stage. Ordinarily, the symptoms demonstrate from 15 to 50 years after initial exposure to asbestos. The development of cancer involves a gradual process without you knowing that it had long been taken place inside you. Unfortunately, some of the patients are asymptomatic. They are clueless that they are already running after their lives. The mesothelioma symptoms are quite similar to less threatening diseases, hence it is difficult to diagnose. If the cancer has already metastasized to other parts of the body, the major symptoms would include pain, difficulty swallowing or dysphagia and swelling in the neck and face. Further, the symptoms vary depending on the type of mesothelioma.
Pleural mesothelioma is the most common form of mesothelioma. The mesothelioma symptoms result from the thickening of the pleural membrane. It includes persistent dry or raspy cough, hemoptysis or coughing up blood, dysphagia, night sweats or fever, unexplained 10% weight loss, fatigue, persistent pain in the lower back or side of the chest, painful breathing, shortness of breath or dyspnea and the presence of lumps. These symptoms, with the exception of the lumps, are common to minor illness. However, the unique sign of pleural mesothelioma is pleural effusion. It is an accumulation of fluid between the lungs and chest cavity making the breathing difficult and painful.
As for the mesothelioma symptoms of the peritoneum, it includes night sweats or fever, swelling or pain in the abdomen which ranges from acute to severe, anemia, low albumin, fatigue, nausea or vomiting and appearance of lumps under the skin on the abdomen. It may likewise involve unexplained weight loss while the waist is dramatically increasing in size. When the cancer is on its late stage, the patients will experience diarrhea or constipation and blood coagulation abnormalities.
The two rare types of mesothelioma are pericardial which affects the lining surrounding the heart and the testicular which affects the testicles. The signs normally correlate to poor prognosis. The mesothelioma symptoms of the pericardial include heart palpitations or irregular heartbeat, weight loss, swelling of legs and feet, chest pain, fever or night sweats, intense fatigue even after ordinary activity. The notable signs pertain to breathing. The patient will experience dyspnea or difficulty breathing particularly at night, shortness of breath and orthopnea or breathing discomfort while lying flat. For the testicular mesothelioma, there is no known symptom other than the appearance of lumps.