NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Physicians at the University of Pennsylvania may have found a way to increase the lifespan of mesothelioma patients. These findings came from a study published in the June 2011 issue of the Annals of Thoracic Surgery, and were largely unexpected given that the original purpose of the study was to see if intraoperative photodynamic therapy (PDT) in conjunction with surgery had any effect.
Fourteen mesothelioma patients underwent modified extrapleural pneumonectomy (MEPP), and fourteen underwent radical pleurectomy (RP). MEPP is an invasive surgery whereby the infected lining and lung is removed. RP is a similar procedure involving the removal of lung lining only. Both groups were treated with PDT, an experimental procedure using light and photosensitzers. The group that underwent RP had astonishing extensions in their lifespan.
"Unlike patients who receive traditional lung sacrificing surgery for mesothelioma, the patients in our study who underwent lung sparing surgery [RP] and photodynamic therapy [PDT]…have experienced unusually long overall survival rates,” remarked Dr. Joseph Friedberg, the surgeon who performed the operations, and the co-director of the Penn Mesothelioma and Pleural Program. “The median survival for those patients had not been reached at over two years when the results were analyzed. That's unusual in this field, especially when the majority of those patients is older and has advanced cancer.”
This is especially remarkable considering that the average survival rate for a mesothelioma patient is 9 to 12 months.
“The results of this study are groundbreaking at best and inspiring at worst. We had to share the hope this new advancement in mesothelioma treatment brings to our clients and countless others suffering from this insidious disease. Nonetheless, this news comes too late for so many people who have unjustly developed this aggressive form of cancer and have already faced insurmountable losses and hardships – these people deserve compensation for their illnesses, and we will continue to help them fight for it,” said Perry Weitz, the founding senior partner of Weitz & Luxenberg, in response.
Weitz & Luxenberg has been serving the legal needs of those afflicted with mesothelioma and asbestos-related diseases for over twenty years. Collectively, we have secured millions of dollars in successful verdict and settlements for our clients. Feel free to contact us for any legal advice, and we will be happy to provide you with a free consultation on your potential case.
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About Weitz & Luxenberg P.C.
Weitz & Luxenberg has been known since 1986 for its preeminent role in asbestos litigation, achieving millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for clients including a 2009 $16.25 million verdict in a case involving the first successful asbestos verdict against a dental supply company. Weitz & Luxenberg also assists clients injured by defective drugs and medical devices as well as environmental pollutants.