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Dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic and the emotions that go with it is an ongoing challenge.  Emotions such as disbelief, denial, anger, depression are just a few  of the common ones that people have been experiencing. Some of these emotions are similar to what patients experience when they are diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma. As the pandemic wore on  people learned to live without, some lived with limited incomes, groceries, and a limited support system. The tangible things that we [...]

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There’s some good news for patients with pleural mesothelioma that are eligible for extrapleural pneumonectomy surgery.  On January 21st, The Lancet published a study sharing the results of the SMART (Surgery for Mesothelioma After Radiation Therapy) protocol which can improve the life expectancy of pleural mesothelioma patients by up to five-and-a-half years.  Between 2008 and 2019, 96 patients were tested with the SMART protocol. The SMART protocol involves exposing the patient to [...]

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Happy New Year! As 2021 begins, there are many promising things to look forward to in the mesothelioma community and in the world.  As COVID-19 defined 2020 and introduced us all to social distancing, quarantining, PPE, and face masks. Hopefully 2021 will be defined by vaccinations and a return to our new normal.  Lessons have been learned and lives have been changed. As we reflect on the year 2020 in the mesothelioma community, there was some progress made in various aspects of treatment [...]

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Given that mesothelioma is such an aggressive cancer, it is always exciting when new treatments are discovered. CAR-T cell immunotherapy is a newer approach to cancer treatment that works to modify a patient’s white blood cells in hopes that they will attack and destroy cancer cells. When a T cell finds the antigens of a cancer cell, it triggers the entire immune system to fight back. By capturing a patient’s T cells and altering them to seek out a specific cancer cell and reintroducing [...]

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It takes a multidisciplinary team to treat a person with a rare disease. Along with highly experienced and accomplished medical scientists there needs to be individualized care. Included and embedded in this specialized treatment is the skills of coaching. We are all very familiar with the roles that coaches play in sports. From many different definitions some of the most successful sports coaches have mastered different skill sets. Some of the skills are analyzing performances, instructing [...]

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