Deciduoid mesothelioma is one of the different types of subtypes of mesothelioma. It’s a rare subtype with distinct yet extremely different characteristics of the other subtypes.
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About Deciduoid Mesothelioma
Epithelial mesothelioma is the most common cell type of mesothelioma, and deciduoid mesothelioma is a unique form of the epithelial variety. Deciduoid cells closely resemble the cell transformation that takes place during early pregnancy. The lining in the uterus (during pregnancy) that assists in forming the placenta is known as the decidua, which is where deciduoid mesothelioma get its name.
The term deciduoid mesothelioma was first described in the 1980s, and so far, only around 24 people have been diagnosed with this cell type. Initially, it was thought that deciduoid mesothelioma only occurred in the peritoneum area and only young women were affected. However, as more researched surfaced, evidence began to show that deciduoid elements were also found in the lung and heart area, and among older males and older females both.
In fact, a little less than half of all deciduoid mesothelioma form in the pleural area, with most of the remaining forming in the peritoneal area, and the least amount forming in the pericardial area.
Deciduoid Mesothelioma Causes
Although hormonal changes and/or asbestos exposures are two guesses as to why deciduoid mesothelioma develops, experts still aren’t completely sure of the cause. It’s one of the only types of mesothelioma types that hasn’t been definitely linked to asbestos. Only a third of all patients diagnosed with this type of mesothelioma were exposed to asbestos in the past.
Physician who theorize that hormonal changes may be the reason for deciduoid mesothelioma base their reasonings on the fact that more than half of all diagnosed patients have been female, with a few of them pregnant.
Deciduoid Mesothelioma Diagnosis
Although this form of mesothelioma is diagnosed with a series of tests just as any other form of mesothelioma, deciduoid mesothelioma resembles other diseases and even other tumors, such as the pseudotumoral deciduosis, which results in making an accurate diagnosis difficult. In addition the features of the deciduoid cell type in tumors can be extremely small and isolated, to taking up most of the tumor.
In turn, many patients have been misdiagnosed with pseudotumoral deciduosis, which is a non-cancerous tumor that requires different treatment option. This can lead to disastrous consequences for the patient as they do not receive the prompt cancer treatment needed to battle the disease.
Deciduoid Mesothelioma Treatment Options
Treatment remains difficult for deciduoid mesothelioma. Those who’ve undergone aggressive surgery to battle the disease have not had much luck as the cancer still continued to progress. Physicians noticed that the same thing happened to patients who underwent surgery, followed by chemotherapy.
Consequently, most doctors aim for palliative treatment for deciduoid mesothelioma patients, meaning that the aim is to make the patient as comfortable as possible as opposed to trying to cure the cancer.
However, it’s still unknown what form of treatment works best for deciduoid mesothelioma patients. For the most part, though, the majority of medical experts agree that a combination of surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy offers the most favorable outcome.
Deciduoid Mesothelioma Prognosis
Unfortunately, prognosis is usually grim for those with deciduoid mesothelioma. On average, the survival rate has been around six months after diagnosis. Yet, since there are so few cases of the disease, future research results may have doctors formulate a better treatment plan that can help extend lives.
It’s also important to note that some patients may live longer than that average survival rate. For instance, past studies indicate that around 30% of those with deciduoid mesothelioma may survive a year after treatment. In addition, there has been one confirmed patient who lived more than four years after being diagnosed with deciduoid mesothelioma.
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