Photodynamic Therapy for Mesothelioma

One of the newest and most exciting types of therapy for mesothelioma is called photodynamic therapy (PDT).

1. How does photodynamic therapy work?
This revolutionary treatment involves doctors injecting a patient with Photofrin, a drug that specifically targets and bonds to mesothelioma cells. This is a very special drug, for when laser or high intensity light is shined on it becomes active and kills the tumor cells. Doctors insert a fiber optic cable into the patient’s chest, and turns on the light.

2. What does this light do?
The light interacts with the drug, creating a special kind of oxygen that eats away the cancerous cells. Timing and aim are critical in PDT, for the doctor needs to shine the light only on the cancer cells that have the drug, not the healthy ones who have also absorbed it.

3. Are their any drawbacks to photodynamic therapy for mesothelioma?
The main drawbacks of this therapy are that the laser light is not very strong, typically only penetrating three centimeters or so, so PDT is best used against tumors that are close to the skin or on the surface of the internal organs. The drugs used in this type of therapy are often absorbed by healthy cells as well, but usually dissipates very quickly, allowing them to regenerate where the cancerous cells had taken over.

4. Are there any side effects to photodynamic therapy for mesotheilioma?
There are also significant side effects. The drugs a patient is given increase the entire body’s sensitivity to sunlight, so a patient must avoid the sun for up to six weeks or risk sun damage. Furthermore, many patients report a metallic taste in their mouths accompanied by severe nausea. Nevertheless, this radical new treatment has demonstrated a marked improvement in many of the clinical trials, but is still too experimental for widespread use.

5. What can I do if I am suffering from mesothelioma?
If you or someone you love is the victim of mesothelioma, you have rights.  The asbestos industry allegedly knew the dangers of their products for years, but chose to hide them from their workers and the public at large.  Now, innocent people affected by this disease are suffering for the greed of these companies, but not all is lost.  Let our dedicated and experienced mesothelioma attorneys help you bring these inhuman corporations to justice, and help you get the compensation you may deserve.  Contact us today.

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Photodynamic Therapy for Mesothelioma facts page updated on 1/11/2012