As the rarest form of asbestos cancer, pericardial mesothelioma is a result of excessive inhalation of asbestos fibers. As these fibers embed themselves into the heart, they harm its protective layer. This process causes chest pains, breathing disorders, and tiredness. Like other forms of mesothelioma, pericardial takes decades to develop, making this form of cancer dangerous and unpredictable. However, it can be dealt with.
Pericardial Mesothelioma Symptoms
Pericardial mesothelioma has a range of symptoms, such as excessive cough, extreme fatigue, heart murmurs, and even an irregular heartbeat. Patients may also suffer from night sweats, shortness of breath, panting, and heart failure. Some patients have tightness and pain in the chest. In addition, they may experience more colds as well as breathing problems and asthma. In fact, bronchial asthma occurs in many pericardial mesothelioma patients.
Pericardial Mesothelioma Diagnosis
To counter these symptoms, a range of medical treatment options are available. First, as with other forms of mesothelioma, you must talk to your doctor to receive an official diagnosis. When you talk to your doctor, be sure to tell him or her about any asbestos exposure, which will help eliminate other possibilities. Your doctor will then order and perform a series of tests to confirm. Next, he or she will recommend treatment.
Pericardial Mesothelioma Treatment
When caught early, surgery may be an option to restore proper breathing. During surgery, the surgeon will try to repair the lining of the heart while removing the harmful asbestos fibers. He or she may also remove the cancerous pericardial tissue as well as other areas with tumors. In addition, the surgeon may drain fluid buildup from around the heart, which helps reduce chest tightness and pain. Otherwise, chemotherapy and radiation therapy may be used.
What Options Do You Have?
If you or a loved one is suffering from pericardial mesothelioma, you are not alone. For more information on pericardial symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment options, please fill out our form for a free mesothelioma packet.