Thrombocytosis, a disorder that causes the body to produce too many blood platelets, has a negative impact on the success of a preferred treatment protocol for a number of mesothelioma patients, according to a new study by the University of Maryland School of Medicine.
The disorder is linked to poor patient outcomes in a variety of cancers, but this study is the first to study its effects on patients with mesothelioma. The researchers concluded having thrombocytosis can in fact have a negative impact on peritoneal mesothelioma patients, specifically those receiving cytoreductive surgery (CRS) with hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC), according to Mesothelioma Research News. The surgery, which removes as much mesothelioma from the abdomen as possible, is followed by a wash of heated chemotherapy medication to kill any remaining cells. It is linked to longer survival rates in peritoneal mesothelioma patients; however, patients must be carefully selected to receive the treatment as significant complications can occur.
To determine any possible link between platelet count, which affects blood clotting, and survival rate, the research team tracked 100 cases of mesothelioma patients selected to receive CRS/HIPEC between 2006 and 2015, and found a significant outcome difference in those with and without thrombocytosis. Those with elevated platelet counts lived an average of 13 months versus 58 months for those with normal counts.
The study concludes thrombocytosis should be considered when deciding if a patient should receive CRS/HIPEC. “Compared with patients with normal platelet counts, patients with elevated counts had significantly greater residual disease after operation,” it states. “Elevated preoperative platelet count is independently associated with poor outcome.”