Although peritoneal mesothelioma case is rarer than pleural mesothelioma, it is often more aggressive and gives lower life expectancy compared to the pleural form. Peritoneal mesothelioma may develop as an extension of pleural mesothelioma through the lymphatic system or stand alone as the primary site of the cancer.
Most people suffering from peritoneal mesothelioma failed to recognize the symptoms as they resemble flu symptoms such as nausea or vomiting, abdominal pain or fever. A change in bowel movement may occur once the cancerous tumor grows bigger downward, on the other hand if the tumor develops upward it can disturb the respiratory system. Pain in abdominal region can happen when the mass of tumor pressurizes the nerve fibers. Weight loss and swelling abdomen are other indications of this abdominal cancer, however when patients seek their doctors’ opinions at this stage it could be too late as normally the cancer has spread and grown bigger in the peritoneal cavity or abdominal cavity.
Diagnosis of peritoneal mesothelioma is very difficult and there is no defined system so far that can differentiate the stages of the cancerous tumor development. When needed, TNM staging system is normally used to detect the cancer in stages.
Treatments for peritoneal mesothelioma are similar to what is used for pleural mesothelioma which may include chemotherapy, radiation or surgery. Although these treatments can’t cure the cancer, they does provide a better prognosis compared to the pleural mesothelioma. The peritoneal mesothelioma life expectancy for untreated cases is 6 months to 1 year but with aggressive treatments patients can expect to live for another 2 – 5 years.
Despite of poor life expectancy, some patients with mesothelioma successfully beat the disease and live much longer than expected. Instead of weeping and waiting for the death coming they searched for alternative solutions and radically changed their lifestyles. That’s how they managed to be the survivors of mesothelioma. Rhio O’Connor and Paul Kraus for example were given a few months only to live but they rejected the idea of giving up and were determined to survive instead. No matter how small your chance is, you should never