| Maybe by writing about this disease, as I learn more about it and its treatment, the process can be therapeutic for me. My family has been hit by it in that one of our members has been diagnosed with it. When one member of the family is ill, we all go through it together, although only the one has the physical pain and discomfort and eventual death.
It is a cancer of the lining around the lungs, heart, and abdominal cavity. Not every state has doctors or hospitals equipped to deal with it. We live near a cancer center that is outstanding for breast cancer, one of the best in the world, but in general cancer treatments, it doesn't make the list for acceptable treatment. So you have to search for the right doctor, the right location. Most hospitals can administer chemo once that's been prescribed, but surgeries and overall direction needs to be in a specialty hospital.
The symptoms involve shortness of breath and can be mistaken for asthma, pneumonia, heart disease, and others. It makes the person fatigued and achy. Once it hits the abdomen, there is more discomfort and slight nausea. But that's not the part that kills you; it's the lungs and heart. It almost always involves asbestos, inhaled. People who've worked around truck brakes, insulation, coal mines, and various building products most commonly get it. People who have done the laundry of such workers have also breathed the asbestos and could have contracted mesothelioma. So that means the people who were involved in the manufacture of these products or who have used them in the building industry could develop this disease eventually.
It's been around since 1929. Little progress has been made in its treatment. It is never cured. People do not go into remission after treatment. The average life span after surgery without chemo is about 11 months. With chemo, it goes from 4 to 24 months, but in rare cases longer. I have yet to hear about the quality of life after the chemo stops. The person known to live the longest since diagnosis is still alive in 2014, having been diagnosed in 1997. He's the exception to the rule.
There are lawyers ready, willing, and waiting to help the patient get their part of the trust fund established by the asbestos companies. You've seen the ads if you've ever been in front of a TV. They want their piece of the action, and will help the patient with their experience, to consult doctors, and choose treatment. They actually become knowledgeable from dealing with many people of the medical terminology and can assist in getting appointments, airline tickets, etc., to make consultations. The cost comes out of your settlement. We figure that it will be enough to cover what the insurance does not cover, after lawyer fees, and travel expenses, unless it goes on for years. There won't be any profit for the patient. So you not only have to choose the right doctor, but the most honest lawyer (if that's possible) who will do the best job for you.
I'm praying for a miracle, a scientific break through. Work is being done in cell research that may help fight the cancer cells. I want to hurry it up. You know you ignore these things until they strike home.