Exposure to asbestos can cause certain types of cancers, such as mesothelioma. This type of cancer occurs due to buildup of cancerous cells or tumors in the lungs, heart, and abdomen. Mesothelioma affects the lungs in many cases. Treatment for mesothelioma occurs in the form of chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and surgery. Although there is no cure for this cancer, treatments reduce symptoms and manage cancer growth. However, chemotherapy and radiation also cause psychological side effects, such as depression, fatigue, loss of interest, and cognitive impairment.
Those who are diagnosed with an early stage of mesothelioma can be treated with surgery and have a longer life expectancy. Those diagnosed in later stages may need radiation or chemotherapy, along with surgery. It is important to understand what to expect when diagnosed with mesothelioma. Often, treatment and prognosis can lead to anxiety and stress for patients and their caregivers. Awareness of psychological effects can help one recognize symptoms and seek treatment in a timely fashion.
Patients who suffer from mesothelioma complain of fatigue, depression, lack of energy, anxiety, lack of enjoyment in hobbies and activities, and general loss of interest. Certain patients even develop post-traumatic stress disorder due to the trauma of cancer diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment. Many also complain of suffering from cognitive impairments, such as memory loss.
A common symptom from treatment due to chemotherapy is referred to as chemo brain. The exact cause of this condition is unknown, however, medical providers are paying more attention to this condition and more research is being conducted to understand the risk factors. Cancer treatment causes sleep loss, fatigue, loss of red blood cell counts, and deficiencies in essential nutrients. Chemo brain is diagnosable and covered by certain health insurance plans. Mesothelioma patients should not ignore these symptoms and tell their doctors immediately if they notice symptoms to receive effective treatment.
Cognitive impairment or dysfunction can cause the inability to think, reason, and remember. Symptoms include the following:
Treatment focuses on coping mechanisms. Patients are encouraged to keep journals to document signs and symptoms, and use a daily planner to track medication, appointments with doctors, and make lists of things to do. Exercising the brain through puzzles, memory games, and learning new skills or languages will alleviate and manage these effects. Additionally, finding ways to increase naps through the day to give the brain adequate rest and relaxation will help reduce symptoms.
If you are diagnosed with mesothelioma or have been exposed to asbestos and are experiencing symptoms, do not hesitate to contact a Delaware mesothelioma lawyer at Jacobs & Crumplar, P.A. Our lawyers have considerable experience in asbestos cases and can provide an evaluation of your claims. Contact our office at 302-656-5445 or contact us online to set up a free consultation. With offices in Georgetown and Wilmington, Delaware, we represent clients throughout the state, including New Castle County, Sussex County, and Dover.