Esophageal Mesothelioma Cancer on the Rise
Esophageal mesothelioma cancer is not as common as pleural mesothelioma, but it is still a deadly disease that can cause severe problems in individuals who suffer from it. This form of mesothelioma asbestos disease attacks the esophagus and comes in two different forms.
Understanding Esophageal Mesothelioma Cancer
Cancer can attack either the voice box (larynx) of patients or the oropharynx, which is the area of the throat at the back of the mouth. In these cases, the most common form of the cancer is squamous cell carcinoma, in which the cells lining the esophagus mutate and become cancerous. When mesothelioma cancer strikes the lower portion of the esophagus, it affects the glandular tissue rather than the lining and is a form of adenocarcinoma.
Initial Symptoms and Progression of Disease
The symptoms of mesothelioma cancer of the esophagus are usually first noticed as a feeling of fullness or heaviness in the throat, although many patients dont realize that this can be a dangerous symptom that should be addressed right away. Additional symptoms include difficulty swallowing, hoarseness, pain in the throat and in serious cases vomiting.
As this type of mesothelioma cancer progresses, patients will develop difficulty with eating and sometimes with speaking. The feeling of fullness in the esophagus will usually develop into the sensation that something is stuck in the throat many people find themselves repeatedly clearing their throats, aggravating their own discomfort.
Treatment and Life Expectancy
There are about 11,000 cases of esophageal cancer diagnosed every year, with most related to asbestos exposure. This number seems to be on the rise. Because treatment of mesothelioma cancer includes surgery, chemotherapy and radiation treatments, it is essential that sufferers see a doctor as soon as symptoms develop for the best chance of treatment success.
In severe cases, the voice box may be removed to prevent the spread of the cancer. In other cases, removal of the cancerous cells followed by other therapies is the preferred course of action, although normal life expectancy isnt usually possible once esophageal mesothelioma cancer has been diagnosed.
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