Factors that may influence a mesothelioma prognosis are the stage, type, location and treatment of the disease. Patients can take action to improve their prognosis.

Can I Improve My Prognosis?

Like many cancers, there is currently no cure for mesothelioma. However, life expectancy can be improved with various treatment options. While many people believe mesothelioma to be a death sentence, there are numerous survivors that tell a different story.

Why Are Survival Rates Improving?

  • Extending Life

    Extending Life

    Mesothelioma patients typically live 9 months after their diagnosis. However, 40% of all mesothelioma patients are now living 12 months or longer. Seeing an experienced doctor is the best way to improve your prognosis.

  • Mesothelioma Research Icon


    Two decades ago, mesothelioma patients survived just days and weeks. With the advancement of new research and treatment options, mesothelioma patients are living longer than ever before—some even reaching remission of their disease.

  • Mesothelioma Options Icon

    Clinical Trials

    Clinical trials are the backbone for advancing mesothelioma research. Patients who participate in these trials open up new treatment options and many have had significant improvements in survival time.

Outlive Your Prognosis With Doctor Match

Many patients have improved their prognosis by finding a mesothelioma doctor. An experienced mesothelioma specialist can perform treatments (such as the EPP or P/D) most likely to improve survival times. Get connected to a top doctor using our free Doctor Match program.

  • We learn about your diagnosis and treatment history.
  • We search through our network of top mesothelioma doctors who fit your needs.
  • We connect you with the specialist most suited to treat your mesothelioma.

Factors Influencing Your Prognosis

Receiving a prognosis is a difficult experience. Nobody is ready to hear how long they have left to live. However, a prognosis is just the first step and can change with available treatment options. A prognosis is determined by a series of factors described below. A prognosis is an educated guess, not a fact.

There are certain factors that are not under a patient’s control. These factors include:

  • Type – Pleural, peritoneal, pericardial
  • Symptoms
  • Histology – Cell types
  • Latency period
  • Metastasis (spread)
  • Age
  • Additional illnesses

Factors Within Your Control

Understanding what encompasses a prognosis can help patients make healthcare decisions that improve their life expectancy. The most important decision a patient can make is to take advantage of factors within their control.

Treatment Options

Mesothelioma research has come a long way in the past decade, creating more treatment options than ever before. Surgery is the most curative treatment option available in prolonging a patient’s life. Patients not eligible for surgery can take advantage of traditional cancer treatments, like chemotherapy, or gain access to exclusive treatments in clinical trials. If you are a veteran with mesothelioma, there are also VA benefits and compensation to help you get the best treatment possible.


Choosing a specialist is one of the most important factors that influences prognosis. It’s also a factor over which the patient has complete control. Specialists also have years of experience treating mesothelioma and conducting research for new treatments, adding to the quality of treatment. Finding the right mesothelioma specialist for your diagnosis is essential to living longer. There are doctors who specialize in mesothelioma in several parts of the country who can improve your prognosis.

Personal Health

The healthier a patient is when cancer strikes, the better the body will be able to defend itself. A healthy immune system is able to manage treatments like chemotherapy and fight off diseases that could complicate recovery. Patients can actively work to improve and maintain their personal health through diet and exercise. Continuing to make healthy choices after a diagnosis can make a significant impact on the patient’s life expectancy.

Second Opinions

Second opinions are also extremely important after receiving a diagnosis. Survivor Alexis Kidd learned her mesothelioma wasn’t as advanced as she thought after getting a second opinion. Getting a second opinion can often mean gaining access to treatment that wasn’t previously available. Some doctors may not offer certain treatments if they think the risks outweigh the benefits. However, some patients have received treatments after getting a second opinion that have saved their life.

Survival Rate

The survival rate for mesothelioma has improved over the past decade as new treatment options have been refined. Aggressive strategies that combine a number of treatment options have been the most successful in fighting mesothelioma. A survival rate is simply a percentage indicating how many patients survive over a certain amount of time.

Mesothelioma Five-Year Survival Rate

Survival statistics for more aggressive diseases and cancers are often based on a five-year survival rate—the percentage of patients who survive 5 years or more. These statistics are used in comparing the effectiveness of treatments over time. When the five-year survival rate gets better, it is a sign that diagnosis and treatment techniques have improved.

5-Year Survival Rate by Age

Patient Survival Rate by Year

Early detection is the holy grail of the mesothelioma treatment community. One of the most difficult aspects of treating mesothelioma is that it is often diagnosed in later stages. 40% of patients that are diagnosed before the age of 45 live five years or longer. This is more than four times the average five-year diagnosis for mesothelioma.

Survival Rate by Year

Take Action to Improve Your Prognosis

Patients with mesothelioma have a limited amount of time to take meaningful action against their diagnosis. Since mesothelioma can spread quickly, patients should learn what treatment options are available to them. Only a mesothelioma specialist can provide patients with most beneficial treatment. Specialists are also an essential tool for those who haven’t had a second opinion. Get connected with a specialist using our free Doctor Match program and take control of your prognosis.