Articles Tagged with mesothelioma treatment

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the first new treatment for mesothelioma in more than 15 years.

NovoTTF-100L System (Novocure), in combination with pemetrexed plus platinum-based chemotherapy, has been approved as a first-line treatment for cases of unresectable locally advanced or metastatic malignant pleural mesothelioma. Mesothelioma’s long latency period means most victims have in an advanced stage upon diagnosis. Cases that are locally advanced, or which ave spread to other organs, are typically deemed inoperable. Boston asbestos attorney

The NovoTTF-100L System is non-invasive. The treatment uses electric fields, known as Tumor Treating Fields, to disrupt cancer-cell division. Approval followed the STELLAR trial, which evaluated effectiveness of the treatment. Our Massachusetts mesothelioma lawyers know such treatment innovations are critical because fewer than 20 percent of patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma are candidates for surgical tumor removal due to diagnosis at an advanced stage of the disease.

The clinical trial, held at cancer centers across Europe, included 80 patients with unresectable, previously untreated, malignant pleural mesothelioma. The results were presented in September 2018 at the 19th annual World Conference on Lung Cancer.

“NovoTTF-100L provides unresectable MPM patients with a treatment option that may improve survival,” said Mary Hesdorffer,  executive director of the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation. Results showed that patients treated with NovoTTF-100L plus chemotherapy had a median overall survival of 18.2 months (95% CI 12.1-25.8), while median progression free survival (secondary endpoint) was 7.6 months. Those results are about six months longer than for those patients who only receive chemotherapy treatment.

While such treatment advances are welcome, it is the work being done in the courtroom to hold these companies responsible that will ultimately do the most to protect American consumers.

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Many people think that asbestos causes lung cancer, and that it is the same as mesothelioma.  While it is true that exposure to asbestos fibers could cause lung cancer, such as the kind experienced by long-term smokers, mesothelioma is much more commonly the result of asbestos exposure, and it is an entirely different form of cancer than lung cancer.

mWd8Wf2Mesothelioma is caused by asbestos fibers becoming trapped in a protective of layer of the tissues inside the human body know as the mesothelium, which is the what the cancer is named after.  While there is a layer of mesothelium in the lungs, and people often get mesothelioma in their lungs (malignant pleural mesothelioma), mesothelioma will often develop in the chest cavity (malignant pericardial mesothelioma) or in the abdomen (malignant peritoneal mesothelioma).  Continue reading

Tremelimumab is one of several drugs that are in development as a treatment for malignant mesothelioma.  As discussed in a recent article from FDA News Alert, for patients, a mesothelioma diagnosis is one of the scariest things they can hear.  It is a rare illness and there is no cure.  Essentially, when a patient learns that he or she has mesothelioma, they are generally told that there is little doctors can do and that the prognosis is normally death within a few months to a few years.

surgeonsIt should be said that this does not mean there are no treatment options for malignant mesothelioma. It is that there aren’t many effective ones. At best, doctors have been able to slightly slow the growth of these deadly and aggressive and tumors, but nobody goes into remission like they do with other types of cancer. Continue reading

According to a recent news feature from LABIOTECH, Sellas Life Sciences Group, based in Switzerland, has just received orphan drug status approval by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its new drug known as WT1 vaccine.

stethascope1WT1 vaccine is an immunotherapeutic cancer vaccine that is being developed to prevent two different types of cancer that generally affect the lungs and surrounding tissues.  Those cancers are malignant pleural mesothelioma (caused by asbestos exposure in nearly all cases) and acute myeloid leukemia (AML).  So far, there have been phase II trails with the drug on both conditions, and there have been what are known as positive top line results during this course of these phase II clinical trials. Continue reading

According to a recent news feature from the Journal Inquirer, a New England man who worked for Sikorsky is now the leading plaintiff in a major mesothelioma class action lawsuit.   Sikorsky is a major manufacturer of civilian and military helicopters, including the famous green and white one’s used to transport the president and, when he is on board, use the call sign Marine One. While many people think there is only one, there are actually over 35 of them assigned the presidential transport unit of the United States Marine Corps.

helicopter-1534226-300x225This employee was working for the helicopter manufacturer as part of a major project at the company’s facility in Stratford, Connecticut in 2010, when he claims he was exposed to deadly asbestos fibers. As part of his complaint, he alleges that he and 40 other workers were working on converting an old boiler house that was built in the 1930s into an industrial plant capable of generating both heat and electricity.  This type of plant is known in the industry as a cogeneration facility. Continue reading

A recent news feature from the Huffington Post looks at fights against various diseases in the United States and around the world throughout modern history.  One example was Polio, which was a major fear in cities such as Boston as recent as 70 years ago.  The disease was finally listed as being officially eradicated in the United States in 1994, which is about 50 years after the vaccine was first created.

whistle-1505616-300x225This, of course, was the Polio vaccine created by Dr. Jonas Salk.  Now that disease is listed as completely eradicated, children are no longer given oral or injectable vaccine against it, which was once commonplace. Polio is a disease that ravages the human nervous system and causes paralysis and death without the vaccine. Continue reading

One of the worst things about mesothelioma diagnosis is that diagnosis normally occurs when the disease is in such an advanced stage that there is nothing much doctors can do to actually cure the patient. Doctors may be able to perform very aggressive surgical procedures followed by massive amounts of chemotherapy and radiation, which can prolong or extend life of the mesothelioma patient by several months, but the vast majority of patients die within 18 months of learning they have the disease.

woman-in-hospital-1051476-mThe reason has to do with how asbestos affects its victims. When a person inhales deadly asbestos fibers, they become lodged in a layer of tissue known as the mesothelium. Here they can metastasize into malignant mesothelioma. If the cancer occurs in the lungs, it is know as malignant pleural mesothelioma. If the cancer occurs in the chest, it is known as pericardial malignant mesothelioma, and if it occurs in the abdomen, as is often the case, it is known as peritoneal mesothelioma. Continue reading

Malignant pleural mesothelioma is a rare and deadly form of cancer almost exclusively caused by exposure to asbestos, and it occurs in a layer of tissue lining the lungs known as the mesothelium. If the cancer occurs in the tissue lining the chest cavity, it is know as malignant pericardial mesothelioma, and if it occurs in stomach it is know as malignant peritoneal mesothelioma. However, it should be noted that all forms of malignant mesothelioma are very aggressive and can spread rapidly to other parts of the body, regardless of where the tumors initially form.

syringe-1238929-mWhen a person first comes in contact with deadly asbestos fibers, they can become trapped in that layer of tissue known as the mesothelioma and eventually metastasize into malignant mesothelioma. This process can occur quickly, but in the vast majority of cases, it takes between 20 and 50 years for a patient to become detectably sick. Once this occurs, and the patient has noticeable symptoms, he or she is usually told there is only short time left to live. While there is no cure, there are drugs that can help extend this time period. Continue reading

If a person is exposed to deadly asbestos fibers, it normally takes between 20 and 50 years for the victim to know they have cancer. Once the cancer has reached a certain level, it will cause the victim to have chest or abdominal pain, in most cases, and cause shortness of breath. Many patents may think they are having a heart attack or some other type of illness and go to the doctor. Once the doctor confirms the patient has mesothelioma, which is easy to do when a lung biopsy is taken and sent to a lab, the patient will usually be told he or she has between six months and two years left to live, depending on how advanced the cancer has become.

surgeon-3-391477-mThis does not mean there are no treatments that can be performed for mesothelioma, but it would hard to consider any of the options anything close to what might be called a cure for malignant mesothelioma. All of the treatments are radical and invasive. Some involve high doses of chemotherapy or radiation, or more likely a combination of both. Many treatments involve major surgery to remove the tumors, along with all or part of the organ to which the tumors are attached. Continue reading

According to a recent news report form NPR, the interview subject was doing well in life. He owned a flooring company that was just awarded a good contract. He was on his way to work one morning when he decided to stop at a fast food restaurant to get something to drink when he felt a sharp pain in his stomach. He described how he collapsed in pain and said it was like he had been stabbed in the stomach with a large knife. At this point, he was being driven to the emergency room by a coworker.

paperworkWhen he woke up, he was in a hospital bed. He saw his wife crying and asked what happened. She told him when doctors looked in his stomach, they found it was full of malignant peritoneal mesothelioma tumors. His doctor told him he did not have very long left to live. He was 39 years old, and this was the first he learned that was his sick, let alone dying of cancer. Continue reading