Each year, nearly 3,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with mesothelioma. It is a cancer caused by asbestos exposure that most commonly affects the lining of the lungs, heart or abdomen.
A mesothelioma diagnosis is overwhelming news, and making sense of the medical mesothelioma information available can be a daunting task. Rest assured, help is available. As a mesothelioma law firm, our lawyers and staff are familiar with asbestos cancer medical experts across the country, and we are prepared to share this information with you and your family.
Watch the video to see what our mesothelioma lawyers have to say about helping you fight mesothelioma and the effects it may have on you and your loved ones.
Diagnosing Mesothelioma: The Process
Diagnosing mesothelioma in its earlier stages allows for a wider range of treatment options, so it is important to begin looking for a mesothelioma specialist as soon as the disease is suspected, especially if you know you have a history of asbestos exposure.
Diagnosis can be difficult because mesothelioma symptoms are very similar to other less serious diseases. As soon as mesothelioma or other asbestos-related disease symptoms start to appear, you should consult your primary care physician to discuss those symptoms and possibly undergo some preliminary tests. Your primary physician will most likely start the diagnostic process by asking you questions about your symptoms, your medical history, your lifestyle and your exposure to asbestos.
Correctly identifying mesothelioma may involve several diagnostic procedures. Each is performed by a different medical professional, so if cancer is suspected, you may be referred to another doctor, or oncologist. Then there are a host of tests to isolate mesothelioma:
- Imaging Tests
- CT Scans
- PET Scans
- Blood Tests
Diagnosing Mesothelioma: Staging
If you are diagnosed with mesothelioma, your doctor will determine the stage of the disease, or how far the cancer has spread. Your doctor will then use the cancer’s stage to determine your mesothelioma prognosis and treatment plan.
Stage 1 – Cancerous tumor remains localized within the effected organ.
Stage 2 – Cancerous tumor has grown slightly larger and is beginning to invade other areas of the effected region.
Stage 3 – Cancerous tumor has spread outside the original effected organ and begins to invade other nearby regions such as the entire lung or the diaphragm and is considered locally advanced.
Stage 4 – Cancerous tumor has spread outside the effected organ and to other MAJOR organs and areas of the body such as brain and bones.
Filing a Mesothelioma Lawsuit After Diagnosis
Download our guide:
Asbestos Litigation, Your Guide to the Legal Process.
Filing a mesothelioma lawsuit can help you obtain fair compensation for mounting medical bills, emotional pain, and loss of income or quality of life as a result of a mesothelioma diagnosis. Because there is a time limit to initiate legal action, it is important to speak with a mesothelioma lawyer who can help you pursue any possible claims against the negligent companies who exposed your or your loved one to asbestos. We encourage you to call us right away to discuss the specifics of your potential case.
Coping With a Mesothelioma Diagnosis
Coping with a mesothelioma diagnosis can be difficult, but it can be made easier with the support of your family and others affected by the disease. After you or a loved one is diagnosed with mesothelioma, you might consider the following steps:
- Learn more about mesothelioma to be better prepared for treatment and care
- Find a mesothelioma specialist who can provide you with a personalized treatment plan
- Explore complementary therapies to help with side effects
- Inquire about financial assistance and contact us to discuss legal options
- Build a network of support by reaching out to family, friends and support groups
Visit our resources section where we’ve suggested a few reliable mesothelioma and asbestos resources and listed a number of leading oncologists, advocates, hospitals and universities the Simmons Mesothelioma Foundation has partnered with.