Lung Disease Drugs Tackle Side Effects of Mesothelioma

Posted on May 24, 2021

Patients diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma face frightening and life-threatening symptoms, as well as others that affect their quality of life. The combination of the two creates a level of misery that leads to depression and, for some, withdrawal. A doctor from the UK came up with a simple but effective answer that solved one of the most irritating issues these patients face – drooling and swallowing problems caused by the spread of the disease.

Drooling is a common problem in mesothelioma patients

Uncontrollable drooling and difficulty swallowing are common problems experienced by patients diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma. Known to the medical community as sialorrhea, the disease appears in patients with mesothelioma when their tumors spread from the pleural cavity to their thyroid gland. Tumors and some of the treatments used to treat them can cause swallowing problems, which leads to drooling. But Dr Claire Plunkett of Farleigh Hospice in Chelmsford, UK, has found a solution to the problem that relieves it quickly and effectively.

Trying to help his patients and improve their quality of lifeDr Plunkett tested the use of a drug called glycopyrronium. Available in injectable, inhaled, topical, and intravenous form, the drug is most commonly used in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, to treat excessive sweating, coughing, wheezing, peptic ulcers and lung disease. shortness of breath.

Mesothelioma patient treated with inhaler finds relief fast

Glycopyrronium had previously been used to treat drooling in patients with mesothelioma, but the treatment was given by injection. Dr Plunkett tested its use in an inhaled format, finding that administration was both more convenient and effective. The 73-year-old patient she treated with the inhaler experienced relief in just 48 hours, with a significantly lower dose than he received by injection.

According to Dr Plunkett, the patient suffers from the more aggressive form of mesothelioma known as sarcomatoid mesothelioma, but after receiving only a few doses of 55 mcg of glycopyrronium bromide per puff, he experienced a decrease in symptoms. “He reported a significant decrease in his symptoms 2 days after starting treatment using a digital rating scale,” she wrote. “A regular dose of one puff twice a day completely resolved the patient’s symptoms within 5 days.”

Although mesothelioma is still considered a fatal disease, relieving symptoms and improving the quality of life for patients is a high priority. For more information on other treatments available, contact Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net today at 1-800-692-8608.

Written by Terri Oppenheimer

Terri Heimann Oppenheimer
Terri Heimann Oppenheimer is the editor-in-chief of our news blog Mesothelioma.net. She graduated from the College of William and Mary with a degree in English. Terri believes knowledge is power and she is committed to sharing news about the impact of Mesothelioma, the latest research and medical breakthroughs, and the stories of victims.

Find out more and contact Terri


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