A retrospective study aimed at assessing progress and trends in mesothelioma revealed that despite the introduction of numerous innovative treatment protocols, little progress has been made in overall patient survival. It also revealed some concerning news about the growing incidence of the rare, asbestos-related disease in women.
Mesothelioma Study Conducted by Canadian Researchers
The mesothelioma study was published in the journal Clinical Lung Cancer and authored by researchers from the Ottawa Hospital Cancer Centre. The group specifically reviewed the demographics, treatments and outcomes of 337 patients diagnosed with and treated for malignant pleural mesothelioma over the nearly thirty-year period between 1991 and 2019.
The group focused on demographic factors including the age at the time of diagnosis and gender, as well as the treatments used in the management of the disease. The three decades of the study saw the introduction of extrapleural pneumonectomy surgery, pemetrexed-based chemotherapy and indwelling pleural catheters, all of which give hope for longer survival times and improved quality of life.
Median Age at Diagnosis of Mesothelioma Increased, as Did Proportion of Females
Though the study showed that median overall survival for mesothelioma patients had improved incrementally over the thirty year period, it also recorded some notable shifts in age at the time of diagnosis and the proportion of female mesothelioma patients. Where median age at diagnosis for the years from 1991 to 1999 was 65.8, from 2010 to 2019 that median age increased to 75 years.
Perhaps most concerning of all was the news that the proportion of females diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma nearly doubled over the three-decades encompassed by the study. Between 1991 and 1999 only 11.6% of mesothelioma patients were female, while between 2010 and 2019 that percentage grew to 20.5%. The researchers offered no explanation for these demographic shifts.
The more we understand about malignant mesothelioma, the more effectively we can respond to it. For information about the support that is available to you, contact the Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net today at 1-800-692-8608.