Causes, symptoms, and treatment of Peritoneal mesothelioma

Mesothelioma. Doctor with stethoscope in turquoise coat holds note with medical term.

Mesothelioma cancer is an aggressive disease that has many symptoms, mesothelioma is of 4 types but peritoneal mesothelioma and pleural mesothelioma are mostly diagnosed in our society. Asbestos exposure is the definitive cause of all types of mesothelioma including peritoneal mesothelioma.

Peritoneal mesothelioma is a rare type of mesothelioma that affects the peritoneum, or lining of the abdomen.

This type of mesothelioma cancer can affect your vital organs in the abdominal cavity which may include your stomach, intestines, spleen, or liver.  

Peritoneal mesothelioma is an aggressive type of cancer that can be challenging to detect early when it has spread all over the vital organs. Out of a hundred patients diagnosed with mesothelioma cancer about 10 to 20  percent of patients are diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma patients. 

Research suggests that about forty 40 percent of patients diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma are women.

Though peritoneal mesothelioma is not a gender-specific disease, neither does it affect only the elderly. This second most common form of cancer can affect both old and young but it is quite rare in children.

In this post, There are a lot of things we are going to reveal to you about peritoneal mesothelioma cancer. Some of those things include the cause and the risk factors of peritoneal mesothelioma, symptoms, and treatment options. Please take your time and read, as we are going to make it easier for you to understand. 

Peritoneal Mesothelioma Causes And Risk Factors.

The known cause or confirmed risk factor of peritoneal mesothelioma is asbestos, Asbestos is a mineral substance used in producing building material in the early 70s, and asbestos is very harmful to human health despite its usefulness. 

About 67 countries in the world have banned the manufacturing, importation, and use of asbestos. Some of those countries include Australia, Algeria, Canada, South Africa, South Korea, Argentina, Saudi Arabia, etc.

Asbestos is mostly used in construction companies, manufacturing, and automotive industries to produce building materials. Asbestos-containing products include Cement, gasket, and Fireproofing textile ceiling, insulation papers, floor tiles, etc.

People who work in asbestos manufacturing companies or use asbestos- products are likely to be at a higher risk of asbestos exposure. Occupations that have a higher risk of  developing mesothelioma cancer are, Firefighters, Construction workers, shipyard workers, Industrial workers, etc  

Though asbestos is the confirmed cause of mesothelioma,  research has proven that many patients with peritoneal mesothelioma do not work in asbestos nor work in these occupations. This means that there are other things that lead to their exposure.   

Other risk factors that may cause exposure and lead to peritoneal mesothelioma are Silica, Gene mutation, and erionite. 

Peritoneal mesothelioma symptoms

A patient diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma may not notice any signs or symptoms until the disease spreads to the vital organs around the abdomen.  The first few symptoms you may notice after the spread of illness in those vital organs are peritoneal effusion-which will cause your abdomen to become swollen or abdominal pains.

Peritoneal mesothelioma symptoms include:

  • Body weakness
  • Nausea
  • Poor appetite
  • Bowel obstruction
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Weight loss
  • Fluid build-up in the abdomen
  • Pain in the pelvic region
  • Fever
  • Swollen abdomen
  • Blood clot
  • Fatigue
  • Night Sweat 

How is peritoneal mesothelioma diagnosed?

Peritoneal mesothelioma is quite difficult to diagnose because the signs or symptoms are often unnoticed until when it has spread to other vital organs in the abdomen. Even if the symptoms become visible or noticeable they may be overlooked or even mistakenly for other cancer-related diseases that have similar symptoms.

When there is a wrong diagnosis, peritoneal mesothelioma will be misdiagnosed with other illnesses like Crohn’s disease, Ovarian cancer, Irritable bowel syndrome, gallstones, and hernias. 

If you are still having peritoneal mesothelioma symptoms listed you might be misdiagnosed with other related cancer diseases. Visit a reputable hospital now to get an accurate diagnosis.

Mesothelioma doctors use a Blood test, CT scan, MRI, Peritoneal fluid analysis, and Biopsy for peritoneal diagnosis. Some of the listed procedures can not give a straight or accurate result that can prove that you have peritoneal mesothelioma But it can only help in identifying abnormalities or peritoneal mesothelioma tumors.  A biopsy is the only procedure that can identify or confirm the presence of peritoneal mesothelioma in the body.

A blood test can only help mesothelioma doctors to check a patient’s overall health and also help them detect abnormalities produced by cancer cells. Blood tests alone cannot diagnose peritoneal mesothelioma cancer.

CT scan which is also known in full as a computed tomography scan can be of great help to your health provider. This type of scan helps in identifying the cancerous cell location in the abdominal region and it can also scan and picture your abdominal cavity to check if mesothelioma has spread to your vital organs. This process can bring out valid information that helps mesothelioma doctors to suggest a biopsy procedure. A computed tomography scan is not painful and may last up to 30 minutes.

Peritoneal mesothelioma prognosis and life expectancy. 

In spite of the fact that mesothelioma cancer has a  lower prognosis, peritoneal mesothelioma has a better prognosis than other types of cancer.

 Peritoneal mesothelioma prognosis is based on many factors which include the patient’s health status, cell type, stages, treatment options, etc.

For instance, A peritoneal mesothelioma patient diagnosed at the early stage will have a favorable treatment option.

 Cell type can greatly impact a patient’s prognosis, Epithelioid, sarcomatoid and biphasic are the three types of mesothelioma cancer cells. However, the Epithelioid cell is the most favorable cell type that has a better treatment option which will lead to a better prognosis, and out of 100 percent of peritoneal mesothelioma cases, epithelioid cells account for about 70 percent.

 According to a report on peritoneal mesothelioma survival rate gotten from a multi-institutional study in 2009 suggest that about four hundred and five patients diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma who underwent the surgery with heated chemotherapy treatment had 53 months average life expectancy and about 47 percent had a five-year life expectancy while patients without treatment can survival between six to one year.      

Peritoneal mesothelioma treatment options

There are many available treatment options for peritoneal mesothelioma, these treatment options can shrink cancerous cells and also prevent cancerous cell development.

Surgery+ heated chemotherapy is one of the best procedures for peritoneal mesothelioma treatment. These treatment options help in ending the existence of cancerous cells found in the abdominal cavity. Note that, only the medical team or doctors will determine the best treatment option that will work for you. Peritoneal treatment options will be based on the peritoneal mesothelioma stage and cancer cell type, overall health status, and other risk factors.

Cytoreduction+ HIPEC [Hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy] has been proven to be the most effective treatment option for a patient with peritoneal mesothelioma. This type of procedure is also known as Sugarbaker Technique which was invented by Dr paul Sugarbaker. The aim of this surgery is to get rid of cancerous cells completely and reduce peritoneal mesothelioma signs and symptoms.

The Sugarbaker technique of getting rid of cancerous cells involves removing all tumors by a surgeon through a procedure known as Debulking. in this procedure a patient’s abdominal lining may be cut off.

The second procedure involves using [HIPEC] Hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy to flush or eliminate the remaining cancerous cells found in the body of a patient diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma. 

Peritoneal mesothelioma patients diagnosed at the early stage may be eligible for Sugarbaker Technique which is Cytoreduction+ HIPEC.

Chemotherapy is another treatment option for patients with peritoneal mesothelioma that are not eligible for  Cytoreduction+ HIPEC.

This treatment option lessens tumors found in the abdomen and also gets rid of cancerous cells completely. It is very effective when pemetrexed is combined with Carboplatin or cisplatin.

 Mesothelioma patients that were diagnosed with the last stage of peritoneal mesothelioma normally receive chemotherapy through an intravenous drip in the arm.

However, chemotherapy and surgery have been the most effective treatment option for patients diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma. Mesothelioma specialists or researchers have been studying to gain more knowledge in finding new peritoneal treatment options that can permanently cure mesothelioma.

Palliative care for peritoneal mesothelioma patients.

Palliative care is one of the best treatments given to a patient diagnosed with the late stage of peritoneal mesothelioma.  This treatment makes them feel comfortable, reduces peritoneal symptoms, and also helps to make the pain less severe. 

Radiation therapy can also help target cancerous cells and less serious uncomfortable symptoms a patient might be experiencing. Though radiation therapy can help lessen discomfort, it also has a huge disadvantage for a patient diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma because this procedure can harm the abdominal vital organs The second most palliative care option for patients diagnosed with late-stage peritoneal mesothelioma is fluid draining. Fluid draining helps in removing fluid build-up that may be causing discomfort in the abdomen, this excess fluid can be drained with a slender needle this procedure is also known as paracentesis or an ascitic tap. 


Peritoneal mesothelioma is the second most common type of mesothelioma, affecting both men and women, young and old. Asbestos is a proven cause of mesothelioma; once an individual inhales asbestos fiber, he or she is more likely to develop peritoneal mesothelioma. 

Peritoneal mesothelioma can take 10 to 50 years to develop, and its signs and symptoms may not be noticeable until it has spread to your vital organs. To avoid a late diagnosis, contact a doctor as soon as you notice your asbestos exposure. The path to peritoneal mesothelioma treatment is not easy, so fight hard; survival is possible.







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