The first questions we typically hear from our newly-diagnosed patients are:
- What’s my prognosis?
- Will I survive?
- Can I be cured?
Clinically speaking, both your prognosis (chance of recovery) and treatment options depend on the following:
- The stage of the cancer (the size of the tumor and whether it is in the lung only or has spread to other places in the body)
- The type of mesothelioma cancer cells and how they look under a microscope
- Whether there are symptoms
- Your general health, including heart and lung health
- Whether the tumor can be removed completely by surgery
- The amount of fluid in the chest or abdomen
- Whether the cancer has just been diagnosed or has come back
Once we know this information, we will have a general idea of how well other patients with your cancer have done in terms of survival. But keep in mind that these are just statistics, and every type of cancer, every treatment plan, and every response to treatment and side effects, will be different for each patient. And even for mesothelioma, for which reported survival rates have been less than ideal, there is always reason to hope.
No two cancers are alike
Just as no mesothelioma patients are exactly alike, the same can be said about their cancers. Each tumor is genetically different from another, and these molecular differences can translate to one patient responding to treatment while another does not.
Roswell Park’s mesothelioma team is committed to giving you, whether diagnosed with early-stage or more advanced cancer, a fighting chance. You have our promise that we will provide the best care and treatments available, and the tools, support and resources you need to ensure both quality of care and quality of life.