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Peritoneal Mesothelioma Patients Show Promising Survival Rates After Combination Surgery, HIPEC

Peritoneal mesothelioma is the second most common type of mesothelioma, accounting for 15% to 20% of all mesothelioma cases. Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is the most common type, accounting for 75% of all mesothelioma cases.

Peritoneal mesothelioma affects the organs in the abdomen and the abdominal cavity. Although the overall survival rate for mesothelioma (all types) is around 15 months, patients with peritoneal mesothelioma have shown promising survival rates thanks to the increased use and effectiveness of Hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC) combined with surgery. 

According to MD Anderson Cancer Center, “HIPEC involves filling the abdominal cavity with chemotherapy drugs that have been heated. Also known as “hot chemotherapy,” HIPEC is performed after the surgeon removes tumors or lesions from the abdominal area.”

After all visible tumors are removed through surgery, “cisplatin, a chemotherapy drug, is heated to 103 degrees Fahrenheit (42 degrees Celsius) and pumped through the abdominal cavity. The patient lies on a special cooling blanket to keep their body temperature at safe levels. Surgeons physically rock the patient back and forth on the operating table for about two hours to ensure that the drug reaches all areas of the abdomen, killing any cancer cells that remain after surgery and reducing the risk for cancer recurrence.”

Overall, peritoneal mesothelioma patients live for 31 to 36 months, compared with an estimated 14 months for MPM patients, overall. However, these figures “don’t take everything into account,” says the American Cancer Society. “Survival rates are grouped based on how far the cancer has spread, but age, overall health, how resectable the cancer is, type of mesothelioma, how well the cancer responds to treatment, and other factors can also affect outlooks.”

For example, studies show that the five-year survival rate is a promising 87% for Stage 1 peritoneal mesothelioma patients who have surgery and HIPEC. And around 53% of Stage 2 patients who undergo surgery and HIPEC have a life expectancy of at least five years.

The five-year survival rate for MPM patients diagnosed between 2008 and 2014 is 19% for localized disease, 11% for regional disease, and 7% for distant disease. For all stages combined, the five-year survival rate is 9%. It is important to note that the ACS says people now being diagnosed with MPM may have a better outlook than these numbers show. Treatments improve over time, and these numbers are based on people who were diagnosed and treated at least five years earlier.

Thanks to innovative treatment combinations such as surgery and HIPEC, peritoneal mesothelioma survival rates have seen a boost since the 1990s, with patients living the longest of all people diagnosed with mesothelioma.

If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, know that there is hope. Newer treatment options and clinical trials are improving outcomes, especially when the disease is diagnosed in its earliest stages. Talk to your doctor about all of your treatment options today.



“Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy.” MD Anderson Cancer Center. The University of Texas, 2019. Web. 14 Aug. 2019.

Kim, Joseph, Shanel Bhagwandin, and Daniel M. Labow. “Malignant peritoneal mesothelioma: a review.” National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI). U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM), National Institutes of Health (NIH), 05 Jun. 2017. Web. 14 Aug. 2019.

“Regional Therapies.” Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA), 2019. Web. 14 Aug. 2019.

“Survival Rates for Mesothelioma.” American Cancer Society, Inc., 2019. Web. 14 Aug. 2019.

“What Are the Types of Mesothelioma?” WebMD LLC., 2005-2019. Web. 14 Aug. 2019.