Mesothelioma Foundation Experts Can Answer Your Questions!

The Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation's team of experts is available to answer your questions about mesothelioma, its symptoms and treatments as well as options available to you. This help is a free service. We are not a law firm. Read more about the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation.

TO GET HELP CALL: (877) End-Meso or (877) 363-6376 or fill out the form to the right to be contacted by us.

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Mesothelioma Treatment and Recovery Scenarios:

Mesothelioma Treatment:  Recovery, Side Effects, What to Expect

Mesothelioma Recovery Scenarios:

Recovery will begin after the very first procedure but may be staggered over several cycles since multimodality treatment for mesothelioma is now becoming the standard.

Since diagnostic procedures for mesothelioma tend to be highly invasive, it may also be necessary to undergo a period of recovery from operations like a thoracoscopy or laparoscopy. These procedures involve substantial surgery and a thoracoscopy may also involve palliative interventions like pleurodesis to reduce fluid production in the chest. Some protocols involve the administration of chemotherapy before surgery and some after. Chemotherapy is usually debilitating to some degree and may include a number of serious side-effects that could require the patient to rest and recover before further treatments are resumed.

Often, blood chemistry tests will reveal a serious decline in white or red blood cells or both, requiring interventions such as a blood transfusion or injections to boost blood cell production. Reduced white cell counts can lead to a suppressed immune system and a vulnerability to infection that may hold up additional treatments until the body recovers sufficiently.

Recovery Following Mesothelioma Surgery:

Recovery from mesothelioma treatment surgery usually implies a short stay in the hospital to ensure that no infection has set in and that no internal bleeding or other complications have arisen. Depending upon the extent of the surgery, and the use of additional therapies like chest drains, a patient may be unable to shower or bathe until the incisions are sufficiently healed. Longer term use of the chest tube may invite infection or inflammation reactions at the incision site. These must be monitored for and treated quickly.

Mesothelioma Recovery: Physical Side Effects

  • Pain
  • Reduced blood counts
  • Loss of Appetite
  • Neurological issues
  • Bleeding and Clotting issues
  • Persistent Cough
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • Immune Suppression
  • Hair loss
  • Scarring/disfigurement

Mesothelioma Recovery: Social and Psychological Side Effects:

Emotional and psychological side effects following mesothelioma treatment include:

For the Patient:

  • Loss of self-worth/Self-Image
  • Embarrassment
  • Feeling helpless
  • Feeling burdensome
  • Loss of status via Loss of job
  • Depression/Anxiety
  • Loss of Libido
  • Fear of recurrence
  • Anger
  • Recrimination
  • Unhappiness

For the Caregiver

  • Frustration
  • Work overload

Do you have specific questions or concerns about mesothelioma treatment, including details on side effects and risks? The Mesothelioma Foundation is here to offer support guidance and help. Talk to a mesothelioma expert for the detailed information.