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There is no evidence that radiotherapy could help to cure or to prolong the survival of patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma

The incidence of malignant pleural mesothelioma is increasing and is expected to peak in many developed countries in the next two decades. In 80% of the patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma there is a clear history of occupational or domestic exposure to asbestos. Very few patients are suitable for any potentially curative treatment and the effectiveness of radical therapy with surgery, radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy in curing patients or prolonging survival is uncertain. The role of radiotherapy is controversial. It has been used as a component of multimodal therapy (plus chemotherapy and/or surgery). The reviewers have not found any reports of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) that show that radiotherapy is an effective option for malignant pleural mesothelioma. There is a need for multicentre experimental studies assessing the role of radiotherapy in this disease.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2010

Pemetrexed disodium (new anticancer drug) significantly increases the length of survival, as well as relieves symptoms of mesothelioma

Mesothelioma is a rare and aggressive type of cancer, usually linked with previous exposure to asbestos. Its most common site is the pleura, a protective lining of the lungs. Currently there is no established standard treatment for mesothelioma. This review found a large clinical trial that examined the effectiveness of pemetrexed disodium, an anticancer drug developed to treat pleural mesothelioma, given in combination with another cancer drug, cisplatin. The results indicate that pemetrexed used in combination with cisplatin significantly increases the length of survival, when compared with cisplatin alone. Further research is needed into the optimum treatment regimen for pleural mesothelioma.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2012

Malignant Mesothelioma Treatment (PDQ®): Patient Version

Expert-reviewed information summary about the treatment of malignant mesothelioma

PDQ Cancer Information Summaries [Internet] - National Cancer Institute (US).

Version: October 21, 2016

Cancer-Related Post-traumatic Stress (PDQ®): Patient Version

Expert-reviewed information summary about post-traumatic stress and related symptoms in cancer patients, cancer survivors, and their family members. Assessment and treatment of these symptoms are discussed.

PDQ Cancer Information Summaries [Internet] - National Cancer Institute (US).

Version: July 7, 2015

Grief, Bereavement, and Coping With Loss (PDQ®): Patient Version

Expert-reviewed report about grief, bereavement, and feelings of loss in survivors of someone who has died of cancer. Grief in children is also discussed.

PDQ Cancer Information Summaries [Internet] - National Cancer Institute (US).

Version: March 6, 2013

Fatigue (PDQ®): Patient Version

Expert-reviewed information summary about fatigue, a condition marked by extreme tiredness and inability to function because of lack of energy, often seen as a complication of cancer or its treatment.

PDQ Cancer Information Summaries [Internet] - National Cancer Institute (US).

Version: May 7, 2015

Unusual Cancers of Childhood Treatment (PDQ®): Patient Version

Expert-reviewed information summary about the treatment of unusual cancers of childhood such as cancers of the head and neck, chest, abdomen, reproductive system, skin, and others.

PDQ Cancer Information Summaries [Internet] - National Cancer Institute (US).

Version: April 6, 2017

High-Dose Vitamin C (PDQ®): Patient Version

Expert-reviewed information summary about the use of high-dose vitamin C as a treatment for people with cancer.

PDQ Cancer Information Summaries [Internet] - National Cancer Institute (US).

Version: April 20, 2017

Systematic Reviews in PubMed

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Systematic Review Methods in PubMed

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