Learning that you or someone you love has been diagnosed with mesothelioma is a heart-wrenching experience. A quick internet search of information on the disease will quickly reveal that it is an always fatal form of cancer that could have been prevented had those responsible exercised care and responsibility.
The single most important question that those affected by mesothelioma ask is also one of the hardest to answer: How long do I have to live? The truth is that life expectation for mesothelioma patients is difficult to predict, and can depend on a number of different important variables.
Among the most important factors in the survival rate of patients who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma is their overall health at the time that they are diagnosed. This question encompasses factors including their age, whether they have any complicating health factors such as diabetes or heart disease, and how far their mesothelioma has advanced.
Quick Action is advised for Mesothelioma Victims
No matter what the health condition of the mesothelioma victim, it is important to act quickly both medically and legally once a diagnosis has been made. The faster that medical treatment begins the more the patient's suffering can be alleviated and the better the chances of extending their life expectancy.
Similarly, taking quick action and contacting a mesothelioma attorney will expedite your ability to receive compensation for your medical expenses and other financial requirements. The law firm of Kaiser Gornick is an experienced mesothelioma law firm, and will be able to answer all of your questions. Contact them today.
Factors for Consideration
In addition to questions about the mesothelioma patient's overall health condition at the time of diagnosis, much can be predicted about their life expectancy following diagnosis based upon their overall outlook and willingness to undergo medical treatments that can be physically demanding, as well as whether or not they are willing to travel to reach high level treatment centers that may be located far from friends and family.
Many patients faced with the certainty of a terminal illness make the decision to forego aggressive treatments and try to preserve their quality of life instead. For these patients, life expectancy is shorter than those who choose to risk pain, side effects and other negatives in order to attempting to extend their lives as long as possible.
The Patient's Age is an Important Factor
In study after study it has been shown that the age of the patient at the time of diagnosis is a critical determinant of how successful aggressive mesothelioma treatment will be. For patients who are under the age of 65, life expectancy is much greater than those who are past this age when their disease state is detected.
Unfortunately, because of the way that mesothelioma manifests itself, it is highly unusual for a patient to be this young. Most people are exposed during their working years of 20 or older, and because it can take decades for the disease's symptoms to arise, patients are often in their 70s when they first start to show symptoms.
Statistically speaking, patients who are 75 or older when diagnosed have a median of 130 fewer days of survival then those who are diagnosed between the age of 65 and 75, and those who are 65 or younger outlive those between 65 and 75 by a median period of 107 days. When you are facing a terminal disease, these days are extremely valuable.
How Advanced is the Cancer
Like all other forms of cancer, mesothelioma is identified by physicians based upon the stage to which it has advanced. This is critical information for predicting life expectancy, as the more advanced the disease state, the shorter the patient's life expectancy is. Unfortunately, in most cases by the time that mesothelioma is diagnosed it is already extremely advanced, and offers few treatment options.
Type of Mesothelioma
Mesothelioma is classified both by where it is located in the body and by the type of cell it is made up of. Both of these variables are crucial in predicting a mesothelioma patient's life expectancy. Pleural mesothelioma is more responsive to treatment than peritoneal mesothelioma, and mesothelioma that is of the epithelioid cell variety is more responsive to treatment than either sarcomatoid or mixed cell types of the disease.
Kaiser Gornick Can Help
It is important when facing a diagnosis of mesothelioma that you take advantage of every opportunity to get the best treatment available, but many mesothelioma victims are hesitant about undergoing treatments that are expensive and beyond their budget.
The mesothelioma attorneys at Kaiser Gornick are here to help you get the resources that you are entitled to from the asbestos companies that caused your illness. Contact us today and let us help you file a claim for what you deserve.