From the blog

Follow Up Care for Mesothelioma

Published: November 19, 2021

Follow-up care is crucial for treating mesothelioma patients. A study out of the United Kingdom found that when patients receive follow-up care, more input from their caregivers, continuity, and more timely information was necessary. The study involved three National Health Service facilities in England. Two of the centers were secondary care facilities while the other was a tertiary care center, which is a highly knowledgeable and specialty facility for mesothelioma. Researchers spoke with patients, nurses, caregivers, and clinical commissioning group members. This information was then used to create best practices for follow-up treatment for mesothelioma patients. They plan on using the information they gathered to improve mesothelioma patient care.

Mesothelioma is a very hard cancer to treat. The most popular form of treatment involves surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. Some places that specialize in newer treatments may also have immunotherapy or Tumor Treating Fields. Once a patient receives treatment, the person needs to receive after care to ensure that any recurrence can be caught. If the tumors are caught early, there is a chance that patients can live longer. After care can include regular checkups, CT scans, blood tests, meetings with a nurse, counseling, or rehab. After care can also help manage harmful side effects from treatment and improve quality of life for patients.

The researchers wanted to know the perspective of patients and caregivers dealing with after care appointments. They had discussions with 9 nurses, 11 mesothelioma patients and caregivers, and 15 clinical commissioning group members. The information from the discussions lead the researchers to conclude that timely information, continuity of care, and specialty care from mesothelioma nurses was very important for treating mesothelioma sufferers. Continuity helps ensure patients keep receiving the care they need while timeliness ensures patients receive the care they need as soon as possible.

Good care for mesothelioma patients is critical for their quality of life and survival. If patients keep receiving treatment instead of just letting their cancer go, they can live longer lives and can be more comfortable while doing so. After receiving surgery or chemotherapy for mesothelioma, doctors still need to monitor progress to make sure patients have the best chance of a good outcome. Thankfully, researchers have continued to study mesothelioma and best practices, because without these studies, people diagnosed with mesothelioma would not live as long as they are today.

Zoe Davey, Catherine Henshall, “Improving mesothelioma follow-up care in the UK: a qualitative study to build a multidisciplinary pyramid of care approach” Oncology (November 2021). [Link]
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