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After you receive treatment for malignant mesothelioma, your NYU Langone doctor schedules follow-up visits every two to three months. These appointments may include diagnostic imaging and blood tests to look for signs of a recurrence.
Recovery from malignant mesothelioma treatment can take months or longer, and requires emotional and physical support. If the condition is advanced, people usually do not recover. Specialists at NYU Langone’s Perlmutter Cancer Center can help reduce pain and inflammation, fluid in the lungs, and stress associated with the condition.
Doctors at NYU Langone’s Rusk Rehabilitation sometimes prescribe in-hospital physical therapy to help people get moving after surgery for pleural or peritoneal mesothelioma. This can help them return home more quickly. Our doctors also prescribe medications for postoperative pain, which may affect mobility.
After an evaluation, Rusk Rehabilitation doctors can also prescribe an outpatient rehabilitation program to optimize your independence. This program focuses on strength training and aerobic exercise to address tumor-related weakness and fatigue. It also aims to improve balance, flexibility, and mobility.
A possible complication of treatment for mesothelioma is damage to the lungs. People may experience trouble breathing, weakness, and difficulty walking and participating in their usual daily activities.
After an evaluation by one of our Rusk Rehabilitation physicians, he or she can prescribe pulmonary rehabilitation to help improve your ability to function by offering breathing exercises, airway clearance techniques, and devices, medications, and relaxation techniques. Therapy focuses on regaining strength and function after surgery.
Most people regain sufficient strength and function and can return home right away. Those not ready to go home can be evaluated for the inpatient pulmonary rehabilitation program. Pulmonary rehabilitation at Rusk Rehabilitation continues with an outpatient program. It helps rebuild your endurance so you can return to your usual activities.
Treatments for side effects may include additional medications and integrative therapies, such as massage, which can help reduce stress. Our specialists may also recommend acupuncture, in which tiny needles are inserted at specific points to help relieve chemotherapy-related hot flashes and radiation-related fatigue.
Neuropathy is a possible side effect of chemotherapy used for mesothelioma. It causes nerve damage, in which a person experiences numbness, tingling, pain, and weakness. People often experience this in the hands, feet, arms, or legs, although it can appear in other parts of the body.
Doctors at Rusk Rehabilitation prescribe medication to help ease the discomfort caused by neuropathy. They also recommend physical therapy to prevent neuropathy from interfering with your balance and strength.
Our doctors encourage healthy eating as part of your ongoing care. Registered oncology dietitians at Perlmutter Cancer Center provide education and counseling on how to eat healthfully.
Psychological and Social Support
Support groups and one-on-one counseling sessions with a psycho-oncologist, a healthcare provider trained to address the psychological needs of people with malignant mesothelioma, are available at Perlmutter Cancer Center.
Psychological support can help you cope with any depression or anxiety you might experience. Social workers are available to address any financial matters that may arise during treatment.
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