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New Approach to Treat Mesothelioma is Encouraging

A new approach to treat mesothelioma has made its way from Toronto in Canada and is now being used at the Swedish Cancer Institute in Seattle.

The treatment is known as SMART which stands for Surgery for Mesothelioma After Radiation Therapy and it was first carried out at the Princess Margaret Cancer Center in Toronto.

The SMART approach is a five day course of intense radiation followed by the most aggressive type of mesothelioma surgery which removes the whole lung, the lining around the lung and part of the diaphragm as well. The levels of radiation involved are very strong and there is additional coordination between the radiation oncologist and the thoracic surgeon.

The theory is that having had the radiation there will be less risk of any of the cancer left behind following the surgery and the patient should be free from the usually incurable disease.
Initial results are very encouraging with Toronto three year survival rate under the procedure being 72% which is more than double the average 32%.

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