One of the biggest questions related to cancer condition is survival rate. Many people consider that cancer diagnosis is like a death sentence while it isn’t actually true. This is also a big issue for anyone diagnosed with mesothelioma. It is already frustrating for anyone to learn they have a cancer and even more disheartening when looking for information related to mesothelioma survival rates.
Prognosis, Life Expectancy, and Survival Rate
However, it isn’t wise to solely focus on the survival rate statistics of mesothelioma patients because it can be misleading. We need to fully understand about prognosis, life expectancy, and survival rate, the three different but related terms.
Prognosis is the outlook of the likely the mesothelioma condition will progress based on the diagnosis and also the likelihood of survival. Mesothelioma usually has poor prognosis as this type of cancer is very aggressive.
Life expectancy is an estimation how long the patient will live after being diagnosed with mesothelioma. The estimation will depend on the condition when diagnosed and the planned course of treatment.
Survival rate is the statistical data showing how many patients with mesothelioma live after a given amount of time.
Numbers Can Be Misleading
It can’t be denied when it is about mesothelioma, the number isn’t very good. As it is a very aggressive cancer, the prognosis is quite poor with average life expectancy 1- 2 years after diagnosis. For the average mesothelioma survival rates, only 9% of patients survive five years after diagnosis. But don’t forget, numbers are not everything. There are many factors determining the mesothelioma prognosis such as the stage of cancer when diagnoses and other factors. As in mesothelioma survival rates, it represents wide array of patients while each patient has different condition one another thus affecting the survivability. There are many patients who lived beyond the survival rates and even some of them can get the condition managed to maintain good quality of life. Mesothelioma patients shouldn’t focus on how bad the survival rate but more on how to improve it.
Improving Mesothelioma Survival Rate
There are various factors related to mesothelioma survival rates and life expectancy. The first and foremost factor is how early the condition is diagnosed. The earlier stage mesothelioma diagnosed, the higher survival rate it gives. Stage 1 mesothelioma is when the tumor is relatively small and localized. It can give more than 21 months of survival rate. The worst condition, stage 4, where the cancer cells already spread out, the survival rate is less than 12 months. The next factors are including the type of mesothelioma cancer cells and the course of treatment.
On earlier stage of mesothelioma, there are more options available for the course of treatment. The oncologist will prepare course of treatment including medications, radiations, chemotherapy, or even surgical procedure for optimum prognosis. While on later stage, good support from loved ones is much better option to maintain good quality of life. Applying for clinical trial is also an option for patients to get new and more advanced mesothelioma treatment still in developing phase.