Settlements for Mesothelioma Patients

Settlements for Mesothelioma Patients

Once you file an asbestos personal injury lawsuit, there are two ways to receive compensation for your injuries. If your case goes to trial, you may receive a favorable jury verdict awarding you compensation for your injuries. But in many instances, asbestos lawsuits settle out of court.
Settlements occur when common ground is found on the amount a defendant is willing to pay and the amount a plaintiff is willing to accept for pleural mesothelioma or other asbestos injuries. Since there is no guarantee on how a trial will end, parties often reach settlement agreements to avoid prolonged litigation and the uncertainty of trial.
But just as there are no guarantees at trial, there are no guarantees that your case will settle. It is best to consult experienced pleural mesothelioma lawyers about your options during the case process, including options for settlement.

Determining When to Settle

Pleural mesothelioma lawsuits are usually filed against multiple defendants who allegedly contributed to the injury. Defendants are not always held equally liable, and states have different rules regarding how liability is divided among defendants. Because a case's outcome may be different for each defendant, the chances of settling also vary for each defendant.
Parties can reach settlements any time after the complaint is filed. In some instances, it is possible to reach a settlement with one or more defendants early in the case process before many papers are filed or much discovery has taken place. This may be especially true for defendants who aren't facing many lawsuits, don't have much litigation experience, or are especially concerned about avoiding substantial litigation costs. They may be inclined to pay some portion of the claims to end the litigation. Plaintiffs may have incentives to accept offers from these defendants so they can have more resources to focus on the remaining defendants during discovery and trial.
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Some cases settle during discovery, as more evidence comes to light and the strength of each party's case becomes clearer. Others settle on the eve of trial or during trial for the same reason.
Sometimes parties reach settlements after a jury has ordered a substantial award. In some cases, a plaintiff may accept a settlement that's lower than a jury award in order to ensure receiving some payment soon. In exchange, the defendant may agree to waive its right to appeal an award and thus delay payment.

Landmark Cases

Borel v. Fibreboard is a U.S. landmark asbestos case that has provided precedents for thousands of asbestos claims. It began in 1936 when Clarence Borel, a husband and father of six, started working in the shipyards and oil refineries along the Texas-Louisiana border. He was unaware that shipyards would soon become a leading cause of occupational asbestos exposure.

Diagnosis and First Settlement

In 1969, doctors diagnosed Borel with advanced asbestosis. That spring, he filed for a workers’ compensation claim for injuries caused on the job. He eventually settled for a little more than $13,000, but that was not enough to cover all of his medical expenses.
It was then that Borel asked Ward Stephenson, a Texas attorney, to sue the eleven asbestos manufacturers that knowingly exposed him to asbestos for $1 million in damages. A verdict of more than $79,400 was made in favor of Borel, but he died of mesothelioma in 1970 before his trial came to a close. All monetary damages were awarded to his wife.

Recognizing Manufacturer's Responsibility

Borel v. Fibreboard became known as the first case to recognize a manufacturer’s responsibility of warning and protecting their workers against the hazardous effects of asbestos exposure.
Since then, there have been many promising mesothelioma verdicts. A jury in Madison County, Illinois in 2003 ordered manufacturer U.S. Steel to pay Roby Whittington $250 million. He is a former employee who was diagnosed with mesothelioma.
In 2012, a California jury awarded former construction worker Bobbie Izell $48 million in a lawsuit against Union Carbide. Izell was exposed to asbestos on various construction sites in the 1960s and 1970s. In 2011, he was diagnosed with mesothelioma.

Factors Affecting Settlement

There are many factors influencing the decision to settle. This is true for both sides of a lawsuit. But these reasons can usually be traced to a common concern: Is there some economic incentive to settling a lawsuit?
Pleural mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases are very aggressive. Their physical, emotional and financial tolls mount quickly. So although plaintiffs may want all of their losses compensated, it may be in their best financial interests to obtain some portion sooner rather than take a chance at receiving more compensation later.
Defendants want to limit their liability for asbestos claims. Sometimes the best way to do that is by agreeing to settle a case. Whether or not the defendant is engaged in multiple asbestos lawsuits will affect the decision. On one hand, settling a case may be a good strategy for avoiding a trial verdict that could encourage further lawsuits and litigation costs. Defendants usually settle without admitting any liability, so settlements can't be used as admissions of liability in other cases. On the other hand, agreeing to a substantial settlement could encourage further lawsuits or affect the settlement amount which other plaintiffs are willing to accept for the claims.
Another factor affecting settlement is whether or not insurance coverage is available to pay asbestos claims. This is particularly true with larger corporate asbestos defendants who usually have insurance policies that help them pay litigation claims and expenses. Their insurers are usually actively involved in litigation and have considerable input into whether and when the corporations agree to settle. The amount of insurance coverage available also affects the amount of settlement.

What Settlement Means for Plaintiffs

Plaintiffs usually have to do more than just deposit payments under settlement agreements. Before agreeing to settlements, plaintiffs should understand that they will likely be responsible for doing certain things under the terms of the agreement. For instance:
  • They must usually agree to drop their lawsuits and waive any future claims against the settling defendant as a condition for settlement. Defendants have little incentive to settle if there's a chance a plaintiff could sue them again.

  • In addition, plaintiffs must usually accept the settling defendant's unwillingness to admit liability. The defendant usually includes language in the settlement agreement that specifically denies responsibility for a plaintiff's injuries.

  • Finally, plaintiffs usually can't talk about settlement agreement terms. In particular, they must usually agree to keep the amount of the settlement a secret. For this reason, pleural mesothelioma settlements are usually reported as settling for an undisclosed amount.
It's wise to consult a qualified pleural mesothelioma attorney before agreeing to settle an asbestos personal injury claim. An even wiser decision would be hiring an experienced pleural mesothelioma attorney to explain your legal options, file your claim, and potentially negotiate a settlement on your behalf.

Claims for Mesothelioma Victims

Claims for Mesothelioma Victims

The basis of every pleural mesothelioma legal claim is that the defendant failed in its duty to ensure the safety of those exposed to an asbestos product. Legal theory about asbestos liability has been well-established for many years now. For instance, asbestos victims have been able to sue manufacturers of asbestos products for failing to warn about the dangers of their products since the landmark case Borel v. Fibreboard Paper Prods. Corp.
But obtaining compensation for asbestos personal injuries isn't cut and dry. Whether or not you obtain compensation will depend on the specific facts of your case and your ability to navigate the court's procedural requirements. That's why it is important to consult a qualified pleural mesothelioma attorney to help you understand the claims filing process.

Understanding the Claims Process

In addition to filing your case with the court, your attorney also handles sending the document to all defendants. Once that happens, more document filings and evidence gathering take place and eventually lead to a trial or possibly a settlement.
Each defendant has a limited amount of time to respond to your complaint with a document known as an answer. A defendant usually uses the answer to deny all of the claims made in the complaint. This filing is usually followed by a motion to dismiss, which points out any failures on your part to state a sufficient legal claim or follow other procedural requirements. If the court grants the motion to dismiss, your case will end.
Otherwise, the parties will continue filing documents with the court to narrow the issues that will be addressed during trial. They will also engage in discovery, which involves gathering more facts, disclosing documents like your medical records and the defendant's company records, and deposing witnesses. You can expect to be deposed early in your case. Your attorney will seek to have it done in a place, like your home, where you can be comfortable and receive necessary medical care.
Some of the facts your attorney gathers during discovery will be used as evidence at trial. The evidence will be used to prove that your injuries were caused by the defendants' products and conduct and that the defendant failed in its legal duty to protect you by warning you about asbestos risks.
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Reasons to File a Claim

Filing a claim can finally put those who neglected to warn and protect you against asbestos exposure accountable for their actions. Many companies were aware of the risks of asbestos during the late 1930s, but its many desirable and low-cost properties outweighed the risks of its workers. You have the legal right to file a claim against the company, manufacturer or person who knowingly exposed you to the toxic material.
Although the legal process is one way to seek justice, there’s another important reason to file a claim: Compensation.

Obtaining Compensation for Your Claim

In addition to holding the defendants accountable, your attorney will also urge the jury to award you compensation for your medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost income and possible punitive damages. Your lawyer will ask for a specific amount based on a careful evaluation of your case and the losses you suffered.
States have different laws about assigning financial liability when there is more than one defendant responsible for an asbestos personal injury. Your attorney can explain how any award you ultimately receive is divided among the defendants.
Along the way, your attorney may be able to negotiate a settlement on your behalf with one or more defendants. But if disputes about material facts remain after the parties have filed motions and completed discovery, the case will go to trial. Again, your attorney will oversee this process, but will keep you informed and obtain your input. Depending on the strength of your evidence at trial, you may be able to settle before the trial ends. Your attorney should also remind you that there are no guarantees that you will receive a jury award or a settlement.
Keep in mind that the best way to know what to expect during the claims process is to consult a knowledgeable pleural mesothelioma attorney. can help you connect with a lawyer. So don't delay contacting us today.

Legal Options

Legal Options

It is important to know your legal rights when you or someone you love is diagnosed with mesothelioma. Experienced attorneys recognize how this type of cancer can affect you and your loved ones physically, emotionally and financially. We are here to help you understand your legal options with a qualified mesothelioma lawyer who can help deliver the compensation you deserve.
Lung Diagram of Pleural Mesothelioma
If you are diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma or lost a family member to the disease, you have grounds to make a legal case against the manufacturer or company who knowingly exposed you or your loved one to asbestos.
Exposure can be prevented. Medical researchers and product manufacturers have known this for nearly a century and yet too many kept quiet and chose not to inform the public — or their own employees — about the severe health consequences of working around asbestos.
The World Health Organization estimates that 125 million workers worldwide have been exposed to asbestos. In the U.S., about 3,000 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma annually, most of whom have pleural mesothelioma.
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Hiring a Lawyer

The reality of asbestos litigation is that not all cases are created equal. This is why it’s important to consider talking to an attorney if you have been diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma. You usually only have between one and four years after your initial diagnosis to file a claim.
Qualified mesothelioma attorneys can help you understand litigation procedures and file a timely legal claim. They can also see your claim through the case process and possibly improve your chances of obtaining compensation.
Diagnosis Time Window
Depending on court rules and individual case circumstances, an attorney may be able to get your pleural mesothelioma case fast tracked for trial.
Once you find a qualified, experienced mesothelioma lawyer, you will work together to determine when and how you were exposed to asbestos, how much and how long you were exposed, what injuries occurred because of exposure, and who to hold accountable — all of which is needed to make a strong case.
Should you pass away before your case is resolved, they can work with your family or estate to continue pursuing legal claims against those who caused your injuries. They may be able to obtain compensation to help provide for your family, assist with remaining medical bills and address other losses.
Contact us today for more information about pleural mesothelioma attorneys who can help explain your legal options. Most of these attorneys offer free consultations. Once you hire an attorney, they are usually paid a percentage of any compensation you may obtain.

Filing a Claim

Asbestos lawsuits begin with filing a document called a complaint or petition. But filing a complaint involves preparation that is best done with the assistance of an experienced pleural mesothelioma lawyer.
An attorney can help by first determining whether you are eligible to file an asbestos personal injury claim. Each state limits the amount of time available to file a lawsuit through laws known as statutes of limitation. An attorney can help determine where to file your lawsuit, which isn't necessarily in the state where you live. They can also find the statutes of limitation that govern how much time you have to file a claim.
Determining when and where you can file requires careful analysis of a number of factors that are specific to your case. These factors include when and where you were exposed to asbestos and the identity and location of the defendants. Some states also require claimants to reach a certain stage of severity in their illness before they can pursue their legal claim. So it will be necessary to review your medical history, as well as your asbestos exposure and work history before filing your complaint.
Since time is of the essence, it's a good idea to contact a pleural mesothelioma attorney as soon as possible to start the case process. Your attorney will gather facts and organize them into a complaint that follows the courts procedural requirements. But fact gathering does not end with the filing of a complaint.

Obtaining Mesothelioma Compensation

Litigation claims are the most common source of mesothelioma compensation. The only way to obtain compensation this way is to file one of two claims:
  • A personal injury lawsuit (exposure on the job)
  • A wrongful death lawsuit (the death of a loved one)
Other sources of compensation include:
A plethora of companies and manufactures responsible for mining asbestos or selling asbestos-containing products have filed for bankruptcy because of the vast amount of asbestos lawsuits against them in the past. In many cases, these companies were legally obligated to create an asbestos trust fund so they would be able to compensate people who develop a related disease.
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Tips for Finding the Right Lawyer

Finding the right lawyer for your case is just as important as finding the right specialist to oversee your care. Given the rarity of pleural mesothelioma, a general practice lawyer will not have the expertise needed to successfully win your case. Seeking a lawyer who specializes in mesothelioma is imperative to your legal success.
Some factors to consider when looking for the right lawyer include:
  • Experience in handling mesothelioma cases
  • A good reputation for successfully handling these cases
  • Knowledge of past landmark asbestos cases
  • Focuses only or at least mostly on asbestos-related cases
  • Understands the intricacies of the disease
  • Knows how this disease affects you and your family
  • Gives you an estimate of the amount of money you may walk away with, but keep in mind that it is impossible to make any guarantees

The Mesothelioma Lawsuit Process

Filing an asbestos-related claim can seem overwhelming. It may be hard to know exactly where to begin, how the process works and how long it can take, especially when time is of the essence. But mesothelioma attorneys are available to manage your case at each stage so that you can focus on your health and time with loved ones. Here is an overview of what you can expect from the legal process, start to finish.
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    Step 1: Preparation

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    Step 2: Filing a Claim

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    Step 3: Responses

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    Step 4: Discovery Phase

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    Step 5: Settlement or Trial

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    Step 6: Appeals

Step 1: Preparation

Although your lawyer will do most of the leg work for you, it is a good idea to arrive at your initial consultation as prepared as you can be. This will help the process move faster and determine if you can move forward with your case.
Gather any medical records that show your diagnosis, and when and where you were exposed to asbestos. Also have your work history readily available, including the company name, address, phone number, your occupational title and role, a detailed report of your job description and years of employment. Always make sure to keep records of all medical bills and other related expenses because this will help determine how much you may be compensated.
Don’t worry if you can’t gather all of this information, your lawyer will assist you with any trouble you may have during the process. Once your lawyer has all the necessary information to make a case, the claims process can begin.

Veterans Assistance Overview

Veterans Assistance Overview

Military veterans, especially ones who served in the U.S. Navy, were unnecessarily exposed to asbestos during their service, placing them at risk for developing pleural mesothelioma. Learn more about how veterans were exposed and benefits that can help today.
Pleural mesothelioma takes a disproportionate toll on U.S. veterans. Nearly one-third of all the annually diagnosed cases of this kind of cancer affect former service members. The statistic is a sobering reminder of the once-careless use of asbestos in every branch of military service, a policy decision that continues to generate serious health issues.
Asbestos materials once were desired by the military because they held the ability to strengthen, insulate and fireproof almost everything, including military bases, ships, vehicles and aircraft. In fact, the mineral and its versatility seemed perfect for the military, which used it to make safer machinery and weaponry. All branches of the military put asbestos construction materials in base housing and most every place where servicemen worked.
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Asbestos in the Military

The belief was that asbestos prevented burns and injuries. It did, but the reality is that the military took advantage of the many desirable qualities of asbestos and consequently put thousands of veterans at risk for developing asbestos-related diseases.
When asbestos fibers are broken or damaged through daily use or repair and maintenance of military property, they become airborne and easily inhaled through the mouth or nose. Persistent inhalation of these fibers overtime can cause them to build up in the lining of the lungs, which can cause tumor growth and eventually lead to pleural mesothelioma.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) offers some hope. It has a number of benefits for veterans who were exposed to asbestos during their service. The Veterans Department at The Pleural Mesothelioma Center is dedicated to ensuring that veterans receive all the VA benefits they deserve.
Asbestos Fibers

If veterans have an injury that is service-connected, they are eligible for disability compensation through the VA. The VA does accept pleural mesothelioma and related conditions as service-connected, but proof of exposure is required.
Our VA-accredited Claims Agents can help prepare all the necessary paperwork to file this type of claim and help veterans write an asbestos exposure summary, which details their level of exposure while enlisted in the military.
The typical compensation rate for mesothelioma starts at about $2,800 per month, but rates are based on the level of disability and increases based on the number of dependents the veteran claims.
Navy Veterans

Eligibility for VA Benefits

A person who served in the active military service and who was discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable is considered a veteran who may be eligible for VA health benefits and services.
Once the nature of a veteran's discharge from military service is established, other eligibility requirements include:
  • Length of military service
  • Classified as a service-connected disability
  • Income level
  • Number of dependents
  • Available VA resources
  • Proof of a diagnosis caused by asbestos exposure
The key to filing a successful VA claim is convincing the VA that the majority, if not all, of a veteran’s asbestos exposure was a direct result of his or her service in the military. The veteran must provide documentation from an accredited physician stating that the diagnosis is asbestos-related and that the disease was caused by military service.
Aaron Munz, Veterans Department Director

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We are here to help. Our VA-Accredited Claims agents are dedicated to guiding you through the process of filing a VA claim, as well as answering questions about veteran’s exposure and risk of developing pleural mesothelioma.
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Who Was Affected?

Any man or woman who served in the U.S. military prior to the late 1980s is at risk for developing pleural mesothelioma or other asbestos-related conditions. During this time, asbestos use was at its highest. It was extensively used in every facet of military life from land to sea.
According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), 21.5 million veterans currently live in the U.S. Hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of these veterans were exposed to asbestos during their service.
Although veterans from all military branches may have been affected by asbestos, sailors of the U.S. Navy are among those with the highest risk of exposure.
Our veterans department talks to veterans who fit into all the categories listed below. Many times veterans call immediately after getting a doctor’s diagnosis of mesothelioma, and we can help them determine pretty quickly whether they encountered asbestos. An official determination will come in the form of the veteran’s service record, among other records. For many veterans, the life-threatening exposure actually came after they left the service and when they went to work in civilian life.
Military Branches
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    Air Force

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Of all the service branches, the Navy has the most links to asbestos. During the early and mid-20th century, the Navy built and maintained most of its ships with the toxic material. From bow to stern, Navy vessels were laden with more than 300 asbestos-containing materials.
Archived documents and repair logs confirm the use of asbestos in pipe covering, insulation, adhesives, millboard, packing material, thermal material, cables, deck covering material, valves, gaskets, grinders, paneling, bedding material and boilers onboard ships.
Sailors encountered these parts and products while installing and repairing things in:
  • Boiler rooms and other rooms subject to high temperatures
  • Navigation rooms
  • Decks
  • Mess halls
  • Sleeping quarters
Service men and women who repaired these products are at the highest risk, but most ships also had poor ventilation systems that allowed for loose asbestos dust to easily travel through air vents and circulate in just about every room, placing anyone on board at risk.
Sailors most at risk for exposure include veterans who served on ships whose keels were laid before 1983, who worked below deck before the early 1990s or worked in shipyards from the 1930s through the 1990s.

Why was Asbestos Used?

The military utilized thousands of asbestos-containing products because it was a cheap, fireproof and readily available material to construct everything from its ships, aircraft, land transportation vehicles and bases.
At the time, it was a one-material fixed all type of solution. It was such an affordable, versatile material that the military struggled with finding a cost-effective replacement. Even though the Navy was well aware of the hazardous health effects associated with asbestos as early as 1939, its greed for asbestos and its many valuable properties outweighed the health of its service men and women.
Whether you ‘re seeking more information on how asbestos was incorporated into the military, or personalized assistance with filing a VA claim or if you’re just looking for some advice, our experienced VA-Accredited Claims Agents are determined to help you in any way they can.

Finding the Right Expert for Your Diagnosis

Finding the Right Expert for Your Diagnosis

Only an experienced pleural mesothelioma specialist can properly diagnose and treat this rare disease. We work with the top doctors around the country and help patients find the best treatment team for their individual diagnosis.
Although pleural is the most common type of mesothelioma, it is still a rare cancer with about 2,000 to 3,000 people diagnosed in the United States each year. Sometimes it may seem as if doctors who specialize in treating this disease are as rare as the cancer itself, but finding a specialist should be your number one priority.
If you want to beat this cancer, a specialist and an expert team of health care professionals are the ones who are most qualified to treat you.
That's why we are here to help you find the specialist who fits your specific diagnosis. Our free Doctor Match program puts you in contact with the best doctors who can give you a fighting chance. We can even help you access funds to help you or your family cover the expenses associated with treatment, travel and accommodation.
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finding the right doctor

Why Do I Need a Specialist?

Finding a specialist is extremely important. Only experienced doctors who have diagnosed and treated this disease before can offer you the most promising and most accurate prognosis.

What to Consider When Choosing a Doctor

Several factors can help you choose the right doctor to oversee your care. Consider the following factors before making a final decision:
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    Compassion and Understanding

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    Quality of Cancer Center

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First and foremost, your doctor should have years of experience treating pleural mesothelioma. Depending upon what stage you are diagnosed at, you’ll want to select doctors who specialize in the kind of treatment you’ll benefit from the most. For example, not everyone is diagnosed early enough to qualify for surgery, but those who do qualify should select a mesothelioma doctor who specializes in thoracic surgery. If you don’t qualify for surgery, select oncologists who specialize in chemotherapy or radiation therapy for pleural mesothelioma.
Pleural Mesothelioma Doctors

Getting Patients to Top Doctors

One of the first steps to improving your prognosis is finding a specialist who is familiar with your specific diagnosis. Our team of dedicated patient advocates will help match you to a doctor based on your diagnosis and location.
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Doctor Questions

Questions to Ask Your Doctor

Before choosing a cancer doctor and treatment center, ask your doctor some basic questions to make sure you can get the help you need:
  • How much experience do you have treating pleural mesothelioma?
  • How many years have you worked in the field?
  • What cancer centers have you worked for?
  • Do you have experience treating my specific subtype (cell type) of mesothelioma?
  • Does this facility offer access to clinical trials?
  • What treatments do you usually offer for this cancer?
  • What treatments do you recommend for me?
  • Do the radiologists, pathologists and other cancer doctors you work alongside also have experience treating mesothelioma?
  • Can you help me find alternative and supplemental therapies beyond the standard care?
  • Can you tell me the stage of my tumor and estimate my life expectancy?
  • Do I have to accept all treatment recommendations?
  • How will the suggested treatment plan help me? How will it affect my lifestyle?

Types of Specialists

With pleural mesothelioma, treatment will likely involve several different doctors from various specialties, particularly with specialized care that includes a multimodal approach. It is important to know and understand the different types of specialists who will be overseeing your care.
Oncology is the term used to refer to the medicine of cancer care. Most of the doctors who treat pleural mesothelioma are oncologists who elect a subspecialty, such as surgery, chemotherapy or radiation therapy.
Some of the doctors you can expect to see include:
A medical oncologist specializes in diagnosing and treating cancer. These doctors can guide you through treatment, and also offer chemotherapy to slow the growth and spread of your cancer. Your medical oncologist may offer treatments, make referrals to other doctors, arrange tests, communicate with surgeons and radiologists, and manage your case. They will prescribe chemotherapy regimens, selecting which drugs will work best for you, such as the combination of pemetrexed and cisplatin. Medical oncologists may also oversee the use of targeted therapies, such as immunotherapy drugs, and refer you to a palliative care doctor for pain medication.

Mesothelioma: A Truly Rare Cancer

Pleural mesothelioma accounts for the majority of all mesothelioma cases, but it’s not as common as any of the most frequently diagnosed cancers in the United States. In fact, the numbers are hardly comparable.
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Overall Cancer Diagnosis

About 1.6 million Americans are diagnosed with cancer annually. Out of all of these cases, about 235,000 people are diagnosed with breast cancer; 233,000 are diagnosed with prostate cancer; and 224,000 are diagnosed with lung cancer.

Mesothelioma Diagnosis

Women's vs Men's Diagnosis

Top Doctors

We have built relationships with many of the leading pleural mesothelioma specialists in the country to give you access to the best care available. Several specialists are located in major metropolitan areas of the Northeast United States, including Boston, Philadelphia and New York. Others are scattered across the country, too.

The top pleural mesothelioma specialists include:

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    New York

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    Los Angeles

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Abraham Lebenthal M.D.
Abraham Lebenthal, M.D.
Surgeon, Boston VA Healthcare
Dr. Lebenthal is Israeli-board certified in general surgery and thoracic surgery. He is a veteran of the Israeli Army, where he served as a physician and commanded an infantry platoon. He advocates minimally invasive surgery to speed up the recovery time for patients, as well as tailored treatment options for each patient.

Improving Your Prognosis

Improving Your Prognosis


Improving Your Prognosis

The general prognosis for someone diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma is often unfavorable. However, making informed decisions about treatment, lifestyle changes and overall health can improve survival and quality of life.
Prognosis and diagnosis often are confused. A prognosis is the likely outcome of a disease, like a forecast of how the disease will affect a person. A diagnosis is the medical classification of which disease a person has. A pleural mesothelioma prognosis usually is not favorable, but may vary depending on the stage of the cancer.
Diagnosing the cancer in the early stages offers a more hopeful outlook because doctors can still perform curative surgery to remove tumors.
People diagnosed with this type of asbestos-related cancer can improve their chances of survival. Many have lived well past their life expectancy by electing treatment and improving their overall health. That could include lifestyle changes, and following the advice of knowledgeable specialists and experts.

Understanding Prognosis, Life Expectancy & Survival Rate

Medical professionals use these terms on a regular basis to discuss prognosis. Although they are similar, they are not interchangeable. Learning more about these terms may help you understand your prognosis a little better.
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Find Specialists to Treat Your Diagnosis

One of the first steps to improving your prognosis is finding a specialist who is familiar with your specific diagnosis. Our team of dedicated patient advocates will help match you to a doctor based on your diagnosis and location.
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Circumstances That Affect Your Prognosis

There are a number of factors that determine someone’s individual prognosis. Some of these cannot be changed, including the cancer’s stage and cell type. But you have some control in modifying other factors to positively influence your prognosis.

Factors You Can Change

People in good health tend to respond better to cancer treatment. Pleural mesothelioma research shows patients in good overall health and physical fitness can handle the side effects of treatment better and often live longer. If you’re a smoker, you can improve lung function and overall health by quitting. Eating a balanced, nutritious diet that’s rich in vegetables and fruit and low in sugar and fat will improve immune function. Getting quality sleep and plenty of it is essential to good health and will help your body recover from cancer treatment.
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Factors You Can't Change

In addition to the factors mentioned above, there are multiple aspects of your diagnosis that you cannot change. These factors include predisposed facts about you (blood characteristics and gender) as well as the current state of your cancer (cell type and stage of cancer).

Blood Characteristics

Certain biomarkers found in blood may have an impact in determining a prognosis. Biomarkers like COX-2, MIB-1, white blood cells (WBC) and platelet counts have varying effects on prognosis. For example, high levels of the protein COX-2 could extend survival. Low blood cell counts can indicate the body is compromised by the cancer, which can negatively impact prognosis. High levels of the biomarker mesothelin can indicate the cancer is growing. These markers vary with each patient and could one day play a pivotal role in optimizing treatment plans for individual patients.

Stage of Cancer

Staging helps determine how far along a cancer is in its progression. Early stages mean the cancer is small and localized, while late stages mean the cancer has grown and spread to other parts of the body. Small, localized tumors are easier to extract with surgery and easier to shrink with chemotherapy and radiation therapy, which translates into a better prognosis. Tumors that have spread are difficult to operate on and bigger tumors don’t respond as well to chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Patients diagnosed with stage I or II generally have a better prognosis than patients diagnosed in stage III or IV.


Statistics show women with pleural mesothelioma have a better prognosis than men because they respond to treatment better. Researchers suspect hormonal differences may play a role in women responding better to treatment. A review of data from the National Cancer Institute shows that 13.4 percent of women with pleural mesothelioma survive for five years, compared with only 4.5 percent of men.


Prognosis is better for younger patients. A younger human body and immune system can better handle the aggressive therapies used to treat cancer than an older body. Younger people tend to have better overall health and physical fitness than the elderly, which helps young people recover from cancer treatment better. Some studies report that patients younger than 50 have a more positive prognosis.

Steps to Take to Improve Your Prognosis

Taking action to manage pleural mesothelioma can improve your prognosis and increase life expectancy. The steps you should consider: Working with a specialist, evaluating all forms of treatment, participating in clinical trials and improving your health and lifestyle choices.
  • 1 Seek Guidance
  • 2 Detect Early
  • 3 Clinical Trials
  • 4 Overall Health
  • 5 Consider Your Options
  • 6 Adjust Your Lifestyle

Seek Guidance from Specialists

Working with a mesothelioma specialist or qualified treatment center is the best step you can take to improve your prognosis. Since this type of cancer is extremely rare compared to other cancers, not many doctors or cancer centers have access to necessary tools or enough experience to diagnosis and treat it accurately. Specialists are the only ones who truly understand the intricacies involved in ensuring you have the best possible care.
Sometimes finding a new doctor can be a stressful task, but it shouldn’t be. That's why our free Doctor Match program is dedicated to finding the right specialist for your specific diagnosis. We can also help you locate top mesothelioma treatment centers. Although a majority of cancer centers are located in the Northeast, other specialty centers are found across the country.

Doctors & Treatment Centers pleural mesothelioma

Doctors & Treatment Centers pleural mesothelioma

One of the most important decisions you can make after diagnosis is choosing a doctor and treatment center.
This is not a disease with a one-size-fits-all treatment option. You need a personalized approach from a specialist who understands the intricacies involved in treating this disease and who is up-to-date on the latest and most effective treatment options, which can only be found at a specialty center.
Pleural Mesothelioma Specialist

Specialty Centers

There are specialty cancer centers spread across the U.S. You will need to consider the location of the center, your ability to travel, your preferred treatment method and what you are looking for in your health care team.

Doctor Match Program

Our Doctor Match program is designed to help you sort out all of these deciding factors and find the right specialist to oversee your care. Our experienced patient advocates can provide a closer look at some of the nation's best doctors and answer any questions you may have about your diagnosis.