Mesothelioma Doctors

Patients currently suffering from mesothelioma can find an experienced doctor, no matter where they’re located in the United States. Taking the time to find the ideal doctor is often a lifesaving decision.

Find Your Mesothelioma Doctor

 


As a rule, doctors who don’t have a strong background with mesothelioma lack the skills needed to treat this very complicated illness. Patients who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma owe it to themselves to look for an experienced mesothelioma physician who has access to current technology and treatments that increase the odds of the patient making a successful recovery.

Why You Deserve a Mesothelioma Doctor

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Mesothelioma is a complicated type of cancer that is the result of inhaling asbestos fibers. The exact location of the cancerous cells impacts the type of treatment that will be the most effective. The chances of survival increase when the patient is in the care of a doctor who has a great deal of experience treating mesothelioma that’s located in a specific area of the body.

In addition to having access to the most groundbreaking technology, mesothelioma specialists will be able to provide the most comprehensive treatment methods and help their patients understand how each treatment type can increase the odds of beating cancer.

One of the best things about an experienced mesothelioma specialist is that the physicians know what clinical treatments might increase their patient’s odds of survival and will offer advice and suggestions about how the patient should handle their health. It’s in the best interest of individuals who have received a mesothelioma diagnosis to seek out the assistance of a mesothelioma doctor as quickly as possible.


Important Things to Keep in Mind While Seeking a Mesothelioma Doctor

The first factor to consider is a doctor’s general experience with mesothelioma. While thousands are diagnosed with mesothelioma, this disease is still considered a rare cancer. As such, not all oncologists and cancer specialists are qualified to treat and advise patients with this disease. Choosing the right doctor for your treatment is crucial in prolonging your life expectancy and helping to fight this disease as a whole. Important questions to consider are:

  • How many years has the doctor been in practice?
  • Will you have access to top-rated facilities?
  • Do they have a staff that provides support during treatment?
  • Do they participate in clinical research?
  • Are they board certified?

The more experience a doctor has, the better. When a doctor has a great deal of experience, they not only know about current clinical treatments and how technology can increase the chances of survival, but will also understand how the disease progresses and be able to use their knowledge to prevent it from spreading throughout the patient’s body.

Look for a doctor that’s connected to current mesothelioma clinical trials. These doctors will be able to advise whether they feel participation in one of the trials will improve the patient’s odds of beating the cancer.

Mesothelioma Familiarity

A general oncologist is not sufficient for someone diagnosed with mesothelioma. You need to know that you can rely on your specialist’s concentrated knowledge of this rare disease. In addition, you need to know that your doctor of choice works specifically with the form of mesothelioma you have— a pericardial mesothelioma specialist won’t have the same information and resources as a peritoneal mesothelioma specialist.

You also want to know that your doctor is up-to-date with the latest research and treatments available to help you select the best treatment course for your unique case.

Important questions to consider are:

  • Does this doctor specialize in the proper form of mesothelioma?
  • Does this doctor’s office offer a multi-disciplinary approach? Do they have the connections to do so alongside other offices if not?
  • Does this doctor have experience with each stage of the disease?
  • Is the doctor involved with, connected to, or informed on the latest developments regarding advanced treatment options or research breakthroughs?
  • Can the doctor adjust treatment options to counter rapid changes in the mesothelioma’s development?

An experienced mesothelioma specialist will be able to offer advice regarding both long and short term treatment options

Personal Empathy and Professional Etiquette

The doctor’s bedside manner cannot be ignored. There have been several studies conducted that show that when patients were treated by a doctor who seemed to genuinely care for them, they were more likely to become a success story.

The importance of emotional support cannot be overstated when you are dealing with something like a mesothelioma diagnosis. There will be bad days, there will be fantastic days, and your doctor will be beside you for all of them.

Important questions to consider include:

  • Is the doctor respectful towards patients and their loved ones?
  • Does the doctor communicate clearly?
  • Does the doctor take their patients’ treatment preferences into consideration?
  • Does the doctor take time to listen to patients and their questions?

Travel Arrangements

If you are considering traveling for treatment, here are some questions to consider:

  • Is there a cancer center near you that can collaborate with your specialist?
  • What are the estimated travel costs? Will you need to stay in a hotel?
  • What financial aid is available?
  • Do you qualify for compensation that can help pay for your travel, treatment, and living expenses?
  • Does the facility host research or offer grants for mesothelioma studies?
  • How many mesothelioma cases has the facility treated? Do they have a good track record?

Seeking Advice

Choosing a specialist and care facility is a monumental decision— and one you don’t have to make alone. Organizations across the nation are available to discuss possibilities, your insurance provider may have recommendations for doctors with whom they prefer to work, and mesothelioma support groups offer insight from other patients and their loved ones.

While advice on the internet needs to be taken with a grain of salt, there is no denying the world wide web’s positive impact on mesothelioma support and resource gathering.

Another source from whom you can seek advice is a mesothelioma attorney. These attorneys can help you avoid facilities with poor track records and help you file claims and lawsuits to help offset costs and ease the financial burden of treatment.

Don’t be Afraid to Seek a Second Opinion

No matter how much you respect or love your current oncologist or physician, there is no shame in seeking a second opinion. Few doctors are intricately familiar with the intricacies of mesothelioma, and no specialist is omniscient. Obtaining second, even third opinions can help you further your understanding of the disease, choose the correct treatment plan for your unique case, and even provide insight to your current treatment provider from the secondary.

Other Types of Specialists

While your primary mesothelioma is the main specialist with whom you will deal, you will also communicate and work alongside a variety of medical care providers. Understanding each provider’s role and how they help with your mesothelioma treatments can help the process be smoother.

Specialists can be broken down into two categories: pre-diagnosis and post-diagnosis.

Pre-Diagnosis

  • General Physician or Primary Care Physician: your everyday doctor. They see you for everything from a cold to family planning to suspected illnesses. When you present symptoms of cancer, they will perform or refer you for imaging and pathology tests.
  • Radiologist: these medical providers focus on imaging technologies to help diagnose and track illnesses and injuries. X-rays, CT scans, and PET scans fall under their jurisdiction.
  • Surgeon: these doctors may perform surgical biopsies, taking fluid or tissue samples to send for analyses. Thoracic surgeons specialize in chest-related surgeries, while general surgeons handle the abdomen.
  • Pathologist: these technicians study tissues, fluids, and blood to understand what our bodies are trying to tell us. They can help confirm diagnosis and determine cancer and cell type.
  • Pulmonologist: these doctors specialize in lungs and their functions. They are invaluable resources for pleural mesothelioma or lung cancer.
  • Gastroenterologist: these doctors specialize in our gastrointestinal system, such as digestive system diseases and other issues within the abdominal region.
  • Cardiologist: experts in all things heart, these doctors especially understand congenital heart defects and heart disorders. They can help eliminate potential causes for symptoms and assist with pericardial mesothelioma information.

Post-Diagnosis

  • Medical oncologist: Oncologists are the first specialists you will be referred to with a cancer diagnosis; they focus primarily on cancers and their treatment.
  • Thoracic surgeon: these doctors will handle any surgeries related to the chest, such as removing tumors for your lungs or future biopsies.
  • Surgical oncologist: these surgeons perform surgery anywhere on the body affected by cancer, including the abdomen, to remove cancerous cells and tumors.
  • Radiation oncologist: these oncologists provide non-surgical radiation therapy.
  • Respiratory therapist: these specialists help support respiratory functions and help with your recovery after surgery.
  • Palliative care specialist: this doctor, nurse, or technician will be part of a staff responsible for your pain relief and general comfort and well-being.
  • Psychologists: many patients seek emotional support such as counseling, as do their families. Mesothelioma, both treated and non, can be trying experiences for all involved.

You Deserve the Best Treatment Available

Each type of mesothelioma is a unique disease that behaves differently. Which is why patients should look for a specialist with a firm grasp on a specific mesothelioma diagnosis. This offers the best outcome for a patient’s prognosis.

If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, you need to connect with an experienced specialist right away. The sooner you do, the sooner your treatment can begin, the greater the chances of your making a successful recovery becomes.