This is a condition where there’s extra fluid between the peritoneum layers (tissue that lines the abdomen and covers most abdominal organs). It’s a symptom of many diseases, including peritoneal mesothelioma, a fatal asbestos-related cancer of the lining of the abdominal cavity and organs. If you show symptoms, see a physician to learn what’s causing it and start treatment.
What is Peritoneal Mesothelioma?
Peritoneal mesothelioma is a rare peritoneum cancer, according to the Cleveland Clinic. It’s caused by prior exposure to asbestos, a mineral fiber that’s harmful when inhaled or ingested. Peritoneal mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer that’s often spread throughout the abdominal lining by the time it’s diagnosed.
Most with the condition are diagnosed in their 50s, and their asbestos exposure may have been decades earlier. Peritoneal mesothelioma is the second most common mesothelioma (behind pleural mesothelioma), but it’s only 10% to 20% of all mesothelioma diagnoses. Usually, less than a thousand new cases are diagnosed in the US annually.
The most common symptom is fluid build-up in the abdomen, known as peritoneal effusions. As fluid collects, your abdomen may grow and become painful. Other peritoneal mesothelioma symptoms include:
- A painful mass in your pelvic area
- Constipation or bowel obstruction
- Nausea and vomiting
- Fever and night sweats
- Unexplained weight loss
- Lost appetite
To get a diagnosis, you will probably undergo:
- A physical examination
- Abdominal X-rays and or CT scans
- Cytopathology testing of fluid obtained through abdominal paracentesis (a needle is inserted into an affected area, and fluid is withdrawn)
If peritoneal mesothelioma is diagnosed, it will be one of three types:
- · Wet: Ascites (a build-up of abdominal fluid) are present, and you feel minimal pain. You may also have nodules on your organs, and your intestines swell
- Dry: You have no ascites, but you have large, painful tumors
- Mixed: You have areas with peritoneal effusion plus dry, painful tumors
Most peritoneal effusions are caused by cirrhosis of the liver. In addition to peritoneal mesothelioma, other cancers that may cause them include:
If you are diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma, you may be entitled to compensation for the harm you’re suffering. Contact Satterley & Kelley, PLLC today to learn more.
What are Peritoneal Effusion Symptoms?
Fluid in the abdominal cavity normally lubricates the linings of organs. The amount of peritoneal fluid in a healthy body differs based on gender, overall health, and other factors. Symptoms may be:
- Abdominal pain or swelling
- Difficulty breathing
- Chest pain
- Weight gain
- Lost appetite
If you have these symptoms, seek medical attention.
How are Peritoneal Effusions Treated?
Problems with peritoneal effusions can be managed through treatment and cured if the underlying cause can be addressed. Peritoneal mesothelioma patients have the best overall survival rates of all mesothelioma patients, but the outlook isn’t as good for those with peritoneal effusions.
The average survival is 20 weeks after diagnosis for those with peritoneal effusion caused by all types of cancers. The prognosis varies from person to person. Peritoneal mesothelioma patients, on average, live a year after diagnosis. Due to treatment advances, patients live longer, with about half living five or more years.
If the cause of your peritoneal effusion is mesothelioma, palliative treatment can manage your symptoms, improve your quality of life, and lessen the pain you’ll experience. A common treatment is periodically draining off fluid. This can be done with a needle, or a permanent drainage catheter may be used if this is expected to be done repeatedly.
Call Us Today For A Free Mesothelioma Lawsuit Consultation
If you or someone you love suffers from peritoneal mesothelioma or another asbestos-related illness in Kentucky, call us toll-free at 855-385-9532. You may also complete our contact form to schedule a free initial consultation.