Chemotherapy for Mesothelioma

Chemotherapy is a drug, or a combination of drugs, that kills cancer cells, no matter where they are in your body. At Memorial Sloan Kettering we understand how to give you chemotherapy safely and effectively. We’ll work with you to customize a plan of care that fits your unique needs.

Chemotherapy for Pleural Mesothelioma

We may recommend chemotherapy if you have advanced pleural mesothelioma. If your disease is still at an early stage, we sometimes use chemotherapy after surgery.

Chemotherapy drugs we often use for pleural mesothelioma are:

  • pemetrexed (Alimta®)
  • cisplatin (Platinol®)
  • bevacizumab (Avastin®)

Studies show that treatment with these three drugs can improve your chance to live longer and healthier. You’ll get the treatment every three weeks. We also give you vitamins to take, to lessen any side effects you may have.

Chemotherapy for Peritoneal Mesothelioma

Surgery by itself often isn’t enough to treat peritoneal mesothelioma, so we recommend chemotherapy as a second treatment.

There are many kinds of chemotherapy for mesothelioma, and many ways to administer it. For example, we can put the medicine right into the part of the abdomen affected by the disease after your surgery. If your mesothelioma is advanced, we can give you chemotherapy to kill the cancer cells through a vein (intravenously).