It always amazes me how much people will sacrifice to treat their mesothelioma at a major treatment center. Recently, I met someone who came to us from South America, and another family from the Middle East. Not only is the geographic distance an issue, a significant language barrier exists as well. Another example is a young woman who moved to a neighboring state to be closer to radiation therapy at a specialized center. Just last week, we met an elderly couple taking an Uber to treatment at a mesothelioma center because driving was too overwhelming. What patients will do for specialized care is endless.
Most people think they would do anything when faced with a rare cancer diagnosis, but often, obstacles get in the way. Let’s face it, it is easier to remain in the comforts of our own home, with the things we know and the people we love. Yet, patients determined to treat their disease will sacrifice the comforts of home to access cutting-edge care. Further, they will sacrifice days of their lives to get a second opinion and explore other options.
Living in hospitality homes or local hotels is not easy, but that may be the cost of going to a mesothelioma center. We hope patients understand that health care professionals know the sacrifices made when traveling distances to be treated at a center. There are resources available and, although it helps, sometimes it may feel like it is not enough. Mentally and physically these are challenging times for patients and caregivers who choose to make sacrifices during their journey.
The flip side to all this is there may be treatment for your mesothelioma, whether it is surgical, chemotherapy, radiation, palliative care or alternative care. I am one hundred percent sure that there are more options at a mesothelioma center than at a local community hospital. Your local medical center is probably a great institution, but simply does not have the experience that a specialized mesothelioma center offers. Having access to top medical treatment is so important. When days and nights seem daunting and you feel like your hotel walls are closing in on you, stop and pat yourself on the back. Remember, you are in pursuit of excellent treatment and a chance to beat this disease. Success comes hard and often must be fought for, but everyone’s life is worth it. Being fortunate enough to know about a place that can offer expert care is a gift. Not everyone knows that these centers exist and that there are treatment options. Mesothelioma is a rare disease and although you feel confident in your local practitioner, we encourage you to make the sacrifice and go to a mesothelioma center.