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Study finds certain types of mesothelioma respond to chemo

A new study shows that determining the specific type of cancer cells that mesothelioma patients in Louisville and other areas have in their bodies could help improve their prognosis. The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania, Yale and the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center at The University of Texas.

For the study, researchers compared the way 4,655 mesothelioma patients with three separate cancer cell types, epithelioid, sarcomatous and biphasic, responded to chemotherapy. Of those, 41% had cancer that had metastasized to other areas of their body. Prior to this study, scientists understood how aggressive each cell type was, but they did not know how each one responded to chemo. The study found that patients with epitheliod mesothelioma cells had a higher survival rate when they were treated with chemotherapy. However, the survival rates of patients with sarcomatous and biphasic cell types did not improve with chemotherapy treatments.

The authors of the study say that patients with the non-responsive mesothelioma cell types might do better with supportive care than chemotherapy. They also said that it was extremely important to carefully select which patients receive chemo.

Mesothelioma is linked to asbestos exposure at work sites and other locations. Individuals who have developed mesothelioma or other asbestos-related health conditions might be able to take legal action against asbestos manufacturers and other responsible parties. For example, with the assistance of an attorney, it may be possible to file a personal injury lawsuit seeking compensation for various damages, including medical expenses, pain and suffering and loss of income. Families who have lost a loved one to mesothelioma might also have the option of filing a wrongful death claim against the at-fault parties.

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