Local chemotherapy for mesothelioma involves delivering chemotherapy drugs directly to the site of the tumor. Apart from traditional intravenous chemotherapy, there are several other methods used to administer chemotherapy locally for mesothelioma. Some of these include:
This involves delivering chemotherapy drugs directly into the chest cavity where the mesothelioma tumor is located. Surgeons may perform a procedure called pleurectomy/decortication (P/D) or extrapleural pneumonectomy (EPP) to remove visible tumors and then administer heated chemotherapy drugs directly into the chest cavity. The heat enhances the penetration of the chemotherapy drugs into the tissues.
For peritoneal mesothelioma (a type affecting the lining of the abdomen), chemotherapy drugs are introduced directly into the abdominal cavity. This can be done during cytoreductive surgery, where the surgeon removes visible tumors, followed by heated intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC). HIPEC allows for higher drug concentrations in the abdomen while minimizing systemic side effects.
This technique involves injecting chemotherapy drugs directly into the tumor mass. It’s a localized approach and can be used for certain types of tumors, though it might not be widely employed for mesothelioma due to its diffuse nature.
Inhaled chemotherapy involves delivering drugs directly into the lungs via inhalation. This method aims to target the tumor while reducing systemic side effects. Research is ongoing to explore the efficacy and safety of inhaled chemotherapy for mesothelioma.
Catheter-based Delivery Systems
Catheters can be implanted into the affected area to continuously deliver chemotherapy drugs over a prolonged period. This localized approach allows for sustained exposure to the drugs directly at the tumor site.
Nanotechnology-based Delivery Systems
Nanoparticles carrying chemotherapy drugs can be designed to target mesothelioma cells specifically. These nanoparticles can enhance drug delivery to the tumor while reducing exposure to healthy tissues, potentially improving treatment outcomes and reducing side effects.
These localized chemotherapy approaches aim to maximize the concentration of drugs at the tumor site while minimizing systemic side effects. However, the effectiveness of these treatments can vary depending on various factors such as the stage of the disease, the patient’s overall health, and the specific characteristics of the tumor. Clinical trials and ongoing research are continually exploring new methods and combinations of treatments to improve outcomes for mesothelioma patients.