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Lymph Nodes May Prove Helpful in the Diagnosis and Treatment of Mesothelioma

December 16, 2013 – A recent study looked at a particular group of lymph nodes that may have the potential to help predict the prognosis of mesothelioma patients, and may play a role in determining the most appropriate treatment plan. While lymph nodes have historically been utilized to help physicians stage many cancers, including mesothelioma, they have not specifically used the posterior intercostal lymph nodes that are located in between the ribs near the spine to help diagnosis phases for any cancers.  The new study focused on this set of lymph nodes and the significance they may have within the mesothelioma area of medicine.

Study Examines the Prognostic Potential of Posterior Intercostal Lymph Nodes for Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma

The mesothelioma study, conducted by a group of researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, has demonstrated the significance of using these specific lymph nodes as a tool to diagnose, stage and treat malignant pleural mesothelioma.  The team included the world renowned Dr. Joseph S. Friedberg, Co-Director of the Penn Mesothelioma and Pleural Disease Program  and Chief of Thoracic Surgery at Penn Presbyterian Medical Center. The retrospective study was completed on 48 patients from Penn Medicine.

All of the participants were diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma and had undergone a radical pleurectomy.  They found that over half of the patients showed metastasis or spreading of their cancer to the posterior intercostal lymph nodes.  In some cases, these lymph nodes were the only lymph nodes that were found to contain cancer cells.  The group of patients with metastatic cancer in the posterior intercostal lymph nodes had significantly shorter survival rates.  In fact, the group of patients that did not have any cancer detected in their rib cage lymph nodes had longer survival rates of up to almost 2 ½ years longer.

The researchers concluded that physicians should adopt the practice of routinely performing a biopsy of the rib cage lymph nodes during any surgical treatment procedure for mesothelioma.  The results of the biopsy can help serve as a guide for doctors when planning  treatment  for patients diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma.  The findings were recently presented at the World Conference on Lung Cancer held in Sydney, Australia.

The Pennsylvania Mesothelioma Lawyers at the Shein Law Are Committed to Advocating for Mesothelioma Victims

The dedicated mesothelioma lawyers at Shein Law in Philadelphia provide aggressive, yet compassionate, legal representation to mesothelioma victims and their families in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.  You can expect our highly skilled and knowledgeable attorneys to fight to secure you the maximum financial compensation to which you are entitled.  We maintain offices in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Pennsauken, New Jersey.  Call us today at 1-877-SHEINLAW (743-4652) to schedule a free consultation or fill our online contact form.

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