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Mesothelioma doctors specialize in treating various types of this rare cancer. These specialists include oncologists, thoracic surgeons and other healthcare professionals. It’s important for patients to choose a mesothelioma specialist. These doctors can develop personalized treatment plans that may improve patient survival.


01. Top Mesothelioma Doctors

Top Mesothelioma Doctors

Photo of Anne S. Tsao, M.D.

Anne S. Tsao, M.D.

Director of the Department of Mesothelioma Program
Houston, TX
Bio

Photo of Raja M. Flores, M.D.

Raja M. Flores, M.D.

Chair of the Department of Thoracic Surgery
New York, NY
Bio

Photo of Raphael Bueno, M.D.

Raphael Bueno, M.D.

Chief of the Division of Thoracic Surgery and Director of the International Mesothelioma...
Boston, MA
Bio

Photo of Harvey Pass, M.D.

Harvey Pass, M.D.

Director of General Thoracic Surgery and Chief of Thoracic Oncology
New York, NY
Bio

Photo of Hedy Lee Kindler, M.D.

Hedy Lee Kindler, M.D.

Director of the Mesothelioma Program
Chicago, IL
Bio

Photo of James Pingpank, M.D.

James Pingpank, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
Pittsburgh, PA
Bio

Photo of Robert Taylor Ripley, M.D.

Robert Taylor Ripley, M.D.

Director of the Mesothelioma Treatment Center
Houston, TX
Bio

Photo of Raffit Hassan, M.D.

Raffit Hassan, M.D.

Chief of the Thoracic and GI Malignancies Branch and Senior Investigator
Bethesda, MD
Bio

Photo of H. Richard Alexander, Jr., M.D.

H. Richard Alexander, Jr., M.D.

Chief Surgical Officer
New Brunswick, NJ
Bio

Photo of David Bartlett, M.D.

David Bartlett, M.D.

Chair of AHN Cancer Institute
Erie, PA
Bio

Photo of Claire Verschraegen, M.D.

Claire Verschraegen, M.D.

Medical Oncologist and Associate Director of Translational Research
Columbus, OH
Bio


02. Defining Mesothelioma Doctors

What Is a Mesothelioma Doctor?

A mesothelioma doctor is a physician who has specialized training and experience with malignant mesothelioma. These specialists have expertise in diagnosing and treating mesothelioma cancer. Mesothelioma doctors stay current on the latest research and treatment options. They may also stay updated on research for other asbestos-related illnesses.

This is why it’s important for patients to seek care from a mesothelioma specialist. General oncologists may not have this level of knowledge or experience with mesothelioma.

Mesothelioma doctors may also have various medical specialties, such as surgery. Top mesothelioma cancer centers typically offer patients access to a multidisciplinary care team. This means a patient’s care team will include doctors with different areas of expertise. Mesothelioma patients’ multidisciplinary teams may include:

  • Cardiothoracic surgeons
  • Medical oncologists
  • Nurse navigators
  • Palliative care specialists
  • Radiation oncologists
  • Radiologists
  • Surgical oncologists
  • Thoracic surgeons

Cancer care teams may consist of doctors with different specialties. For instance, the patient’s type of mesothelioma and treatment plan may influence the specialists needed.

Why Do I Need a Mesothelioma Doctor?

Mesothelioma doctors have the experience and knowledge needed to treat this rare disease. These specialists understand the latest mesothelioma treatment options. They may also be able to help patients access clinical trials. Getting the right treatment may help patients improve their survival and quality of life.

Mesothelioma doctors also understand the impacts of asbestos exposure and symptoms of asbestos-related diseases. Specialists will be able to confirm a mesothelioma diagnosis. They can help develop the best course of action for the patient.

Many mesothelioma doctors specialize in specific treatments. Doctors may also specialize in working with different types of mesothelioma. Patients may consider seeking treatment from doctors who specialize in their type of mesothelioma.

Pleural Mesothelioma Doctors

Pleural mesothelioma doctors specialize in the most common form of the cancer, which develops in the lining of the lungs. Medical oncologists, thoracic surgeons and others may specialize in treating pleural mesothelioma. Pleural mesothelioma specialists practice at top cancer centers across the country. Some top pleural mesothelioma specialists include:

Photo of Anne S. Tsao, M.D.

Anne S. Tsao, M.D.

Director of the Department of Mesothelioma Program
Houston, TX
Bio

Photo of Raja M. Flores, M.D.

Raja M. Flores, M.D.

Chair of the Department of Thoracic Surgery
New York, NY
Bio

Photo of Raphael Bueno, M.D.

Raphael Bueno, M.D.

Chief of the Division of Thoracic Surgery and Director of the International Mesothelioma...
Boston, MA
Bio

Photo of Hedy Lee Kindler, M.D.

Hedy Lee Kindler, M.D.

Director of the Mesothelioma Program
Chicago, IL
Bio

Pleural mesothelioma doctors may recommend a multimodal, or combination, treatment plan for patients. Research shows multimodal treatments have been effective in extending pleural mesothelioma survival.

Multimodal treatment plans for pleural mesothelioma may include various therapies, such as:

  • Chemotherapy: This is a common treatment for pleural mesothelioma. Specialists may recommend cisplatin with Alimta® (pemetrexed) or other chemotherapy drugs. Chemotherapy may be combined with surgery, immunotherapy or other treatments.
  • Extrapleural pneumonectomy (EPP): EPP is a radical thoracic surgery to treat pleural mesothelioma. This surgery removes the impacted lung. Surgeons also remove portions of the diaphragm and the linings of the lung and heart. It may be combined with chemotherapy, radiation or other therapies.
  • Immunotherapy: This treatment stimulates the immune system to treat pleural mesothelioma. Opdivo® + Yervoy® is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat inoperable pleural mesothelioma.
  • Pleurectomy/decortication (P/D): P/D is a less radical pleural mesothelioma surgery than EPP. Unlike EPP, this surgery does not remove the impacted lung. P/D removes the lining of the lung and abnormal tissue around the lung.
  • Radiation therapy: This treatment uses energy from radiation to help kill mesothelioma cancer cells. It has shown success in treating pleural mesothelioma.
  • Tumor Treating Fields (TTFields): TTFields is a newer pleural mesothelioma therapy. TTFields uses low-intensity electrical fields to disrupt cancer growth. This treatment combined with chemotherapy has FDA approval for pleural mesothelioma.

Specialists may recommend any of these or other therapies to treat pleural mesothelioma. They will develop a custom plan based on the patient’s case. For instance, pleural mesothelioma oncologists will consider the patient’s stage, age and overall health.

Peritoneal Mesothelioma Doctors

Peritoneal mesothelioma doctors specialize in the second most common form of the cancer. This type develops in the lining of the abdomen. Medical oncologists, surgical oncologists and other professionals may specialize in peritoneal mesothelioma. Some top peritoneal mesothelioma specialists include:

Photo of James Pingpank, M.D.

James Pingpank, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
Pittsburgh, PA
Bio

Photo of H. Richard Alexander, Jr., M.D.

H. Richard Alexander, Jr., M.D.

Chief Surgical Officer
New Brunswick, NJ
Bio

Photo of Claire Verschraegen, M.D.

Claire Verschraegen, M.D.

Medical Oncologist and Associate Director of Translational Research
Columbus, OH
Bio

Photo of Brian W. Loggie, M.D.

Brian W. Loggie, M.D.

Chief of Division of Surgical Oncology & Director of the Cancer Center at Creighton...
Omaha, NE
Bio

Peritoneal mesothelioma doctors can develop personalized treatment options for patients. Specialists will often recommend a multimodal treatment plan. These plans consist of two or more therapies. Research shows multimodal treatment plans have been effective in extending survival for peritoneal mesothelioma patients.

Multimodal treatment plans for peritoneal mesothelioma may include various therapies, such as:

  • Chemotherapy: Doctors may administer chemotherapy in different ways to treat peritoneal mesothelioma. For instance, hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC) consists of a heated chemotherapy wash. Doctors administer HIPEC to the abdomen after surgery. HIPEC + surgery has shown success in improving peritoneal mesothelioma survival.
  • Surgery: Doctors perform cytoreductive surgery to remove as much visible peritoneal mesothelioma tumor as possible. When combined with HIPEC, cytoreductive surgery may greatly improve mesothelioma life expectancy.
  • Immunotherapy: This treatment may be another option for peritoneal mesothelioma. Researchers continue to test different combinations of immunotherapy drugs. For instance, a new trial will test Opdivo + Yervoy for peritoneal mesothelioma. This combination has FDA approval for pleural mesothelioma.

Peritoneal mesothelioma patients may also undergo palliative treatments. These therapies may provide symptom relief and improve quality of life. For instance, doctors may recommend paracentesis for some patients. It is a surgery to remove excess fluid in the abdomen that may be causing pain and breathing difficulty.

Peritoneal mesothelioma specialists will use many factors to develop a custom treatment plan. They will consider the cell type, stage and patient characteristics when making treatment recommendations.

Doctors for Other Types of Mesothelioma

Doctors may also have experience with rarer types of mesothelioma. Pericardial mesothelioma develops in the lining of the heart, accounting for about 1% of diagnoses. Testicular mesothelioma is even rarer. It develops in the lining of the testes.

Because of their rarity, doctors have not yet established clear treatment guidelines for these types. However, patients may receive traditional therapies, including surgery, chemotherapy and/or radiation. Other treatments may also be options depending on the patient’s case.

03. How to Choose a Mesothelioma Doctor

Choosing Your Mesothelioma Specialist

Choosing a mesothelioma specialist is an important decision. Patients should seek a mesothelioma doctor they feel comfortable with and can trust. When choosing a specialist, mesothelioma patients should consider various factors like the doctor’s experience and specialty.

  • Level of experience: It is important for patients to work with a doctor who has experience treating mesothelioma. Because the cancer is rare, general oncologists may not know the best treatment approaches. Patients may want to ask how many years of experience a doctor has with mesothelioma. It may also be helpful to find out how many mesothelioma patients the doctor treats each year.
  • Trust and communication: Mesothelioma patients should feel comfortable with their care team. Patients should be able to freely ask their doctor questions. Patients should also feel comfortable communicating any concerns. They should be able to trust their physicians.
  • Doctor’s specialty: Patients may consider seeking treatment from a doctor who specializes in their type of mesothelioma. Patients should also keep in mind they may be treated by a multidisciplinary care team. They may want to consider the experience and expertise of the rest of the care team when making a decision.
  • Doctor’s availability: Patients should check if any doctors they are interested in are available and taking new patients. Mesothelioma may progress quickly. After diagnosis, it is important for patients to seek treatment as soon as possible. Treatment may be the most effective way to improve mesothelioma prognosis.
  • Clinical trial access: Many mesothelioma experts work at top cancer centers that participate in clinical research. This can help patients access mesothelioma clinical trials. These trials may offer patients access to new treatments that may extend survival. Clinical trials may also offer treatment at a lower cost than traditional therapies.
  • Doctor’s location: Mesothelioma doctors practice at treatment centers across the country. Some patients may choose or need to travel to seek mesothelioma cancer treatment. When researching, patients should consider how far they are willing to travel for care. They should keep in mind potential travel and lodging costs when weighing their decision.
  • Cost of services: Patients may have concerns about treatment costs. Patients should research which mesothelioma doctors accept their insurance plans. Patients may also talk to the cancer center about the costs of recommended treatments. They may want to ask about what costs may or may not be covered by insurance.

Mesothelioma is a rare cancer that can be misdiagnosed. General oncologists may have never diagnosed or treated mesothelioma. This can cause delays in diagnosis or may hinder care for the patient.

Patients should seek a mesothelioma specialist to receive a second opinion and confirm the diagnosis. An accurate mesothelioma diagnosis can help ensure patients get the appropriate treatment. Mesothelioma experts can also help determine the best treatment options for an individual’s case. Treatment may extend patient survival and improve quality of life.

04. Locate a Mesothelioma Specialist

Find a Mesothelioma Doctor Near You

Mesothelioma doctors practice at treatment centers across the United States. Some patients may need to travel to seek specialized care in nearby cities or states. However, many cancer centers offer resources to help patients and their loved ones seek care away from home.

Mesothelioma Doctors

Photo of Paul H. Sugarbaker, M.D.

Paul H. Sugarbaker, M.D.

Retired Gastrointestinal Surgical Oncologist
Washington, DC,
Bio
Photo of David Sugarbaker, MD

David Sugarbaker, MD

,
Bio
Photo of Jeanne E. Anderson, M.D.

Jeanne E. Anderson, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Anchorage, AK
Bio
Photo of William E. Curtis, M.D.

William E. Curtis, M.D.

Retired Cardiothoracic Surgeon
Anchorage, AK
Bio
Photo of Francisco Robert-Vizcarrondo, M.D.

Francisco Robert-Vizcarrondo, M.D.

Medical Oncologist/Hematologist
Birmingham, AL
Bio
Photo of Benjamin Wei, M.D.

Benjamin Wei, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Birmingham, AL
Bio
Photo of Konstantinos Arnaoutakis, M.D.

Konstantinos Arnaoutakis, M.D.

Medical Hematologist and Oncologist
Little Rock, AR
Bio
Photo of Matthew A. Steliga, M.D.

Matthew A. Steliga, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Little Rock, AR
Bio
Photo of Linda L. Garland, M.D.

Linda L. Garland, M.D.

Director of the Clinical Lung Cancer Program
Tucson, AZ
Bio
Photo of Helen J. Ross, M.D.

Helen J. Ross, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Gilbert, AZ
Bio
Photo of Nabil Wasif, M.D.

Nabil Wasif, M.D.

Vice Chair of Education, Department of Surgery
Phoenix, AZ
Bio
Photo of Joel M. Baumgartner, M.D.

Joel M. Baumgartner, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
La Jolla, CA
Bio
Photo of Robert Brian Cameron, M.D.

Robert Brian Cameron, M.D.

Chief of General Thoracic Surgery
Los Angeles, CA
Bio
Photo of Michael Yuechia Chang, M.D.

Michael Yuechia Chang, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Los Angeles, CA
Bio
Photo of W. Charles Conway, II, M.D.

W. Charles Conway, II, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
Santa Barbara, CA
Bio
Photo of Mark R. Cullen, M.D.

Mark R. Cullen, M.D.

Director of the Center for Population Health Sciences
Stanford, CA
Bio
Photo of Matthew A. Gubens, M.D.

Matthew A. Gubens, M.D.

Thoracic Oncologist
San Francisco, CA
Bio
Photo of David M. Jablons, M.D.

David M. Jablons, M.D.

Chief of General Thoracic Surgery and Director of the Thoracic Oncology Laboratory
San Francisco, CA
Bio
Photo of Thierry Marie Jahan, M.D.

Thierry Marie Jahan, M.D.

Retired Medical Oncologist
San Francisco, CA
Bio
Photo of Mark W. Lischner, M.D.

Mark W. Lischner, M.D.

Pulmonary Specialist
Roseville, CA
Bio
Photo of Jyoti Malhotra, M.D.

Jyoti Malhotra, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Duarte, CA
Bio
Photo of Ravi Salgia, M.D.

Ravi Salgia, M.D.

Medical Oncologist and Associate Director for Clinical Sciences
Duarte, CA
Bio
Photo of Howard Jack West, M.D.

Howard Jack West, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Duarte, CA
Bio
Photo of Steven Ahrendt, M.D.

Steven Ahrendt, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist and Director of the Cytoreductive Surgery/HIPEC Program
Aurora, CO
Bio
Photo of D. Ross Camidge, M.D.

D. Ross Camidge, M.D.

Director of Thoracic Oncology
Aurora, CO
Bio
Photo of John D. Mitchell, M.D.

John D. Mitchell, M.D.

Cardiothoracic Surgeon and Chief of General Thoracic Surgery
Aurora, CO
Bio
Photo of Frank C. Detterbeck, M.D.

Frank C. Detterbeck, M.D.

Chief of Thoracic Surgery and Surgical Director of Thoracic Oncology
New Haven, CT
Bio
Photo of Michael R. Grey, M.D.

Michael R. Grey, M.D.

Chairman of the Department of Medicine
Hartford, CT
Bio
Photo of Carrie A. Redlich, M.D.

Carrie A. Redlich, M.D.

Director of the Occupational and Environmental Medicine Program
New Haven, CT
Bio
Photo of Joshua Reuss, M.D.

Joshua Reuss, M.D.

Thoracic Medical Oncologist
Washington, DC
Bio
Photo of Gregory A. Masters, M.D.

Gregory A. Masters, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Newark, DE
Bio
Photo of Charles R. Mulligan, Jr., M.D.

Charles R. Mulligan, Jr., M.D.

Chief of Thoracic Surgery
Newark, DE
Bio
Photo of Alberto A. Chiappori, M.D.

Alberto A. Chiappori, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Tampa, FL
Bio
Photo of Farid Gharagozloo, M.D.

Farid Gharagozloo, M.D.

Medical Director of Thoracic Surgery
Kissimmee, FL
Bio
Photo of Yanyan Lou, M.D.

Yanyan Lou, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Jacksonville, FL
Bio
Photo of Lary A. Robinson, M.D.

Lary A. Robinson, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Tampa, FL
Bio
Photo of Tawee Tanvetyanon, M.D.

Tawee Tanvetyanon, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Tampa, FL
Bio
Photo of Eric Toloza, M.D.

Eric Toloza, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Tampa, FL
Bio
Photo of Nestor R. Villamizar Ortiz, M.D.

Nestor R. Villamizar Ortiz, M.D.

Cardiothoracic Surgeon/Thoracic Surgeon
Miami, FL
Bio
Photo of Seth D. Force, M.D.

Seth D. Force, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon and Surgical Director of the Thoracic Oncology Program
Atlanta, GA
Bio
Photo of Daniel L. Miller, M.D.

Daniel L. Miller, M.D.

Surgical Director
Augusta, GA
Bio
Photo of Suresh S. Ramalingam, M.D.

Suresh S. Ramalingam, M.D.

Thoracic Oncologist
Atlanta, GA
Bio
Photo of Jess D. Schwartz, M.D.

Jess D. Schwartz, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Lawrenceville, GA
Bio
Photo of Michele Carbone, M.D.

Michele Carbone, M.D.

Director of Thoracic Oncology
Honolulu, HI
Bio
Photo of Haining Yang, M.D.

Haining Yang, M.D.

Researcher
Honolulu, HI
Bio
Photo of Gerald H. Clamon, M.D.

Gerald H. Clamon, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Iowa City, IA
Bio
Photo of Muhammad Furqan, M.D.

Muhammad Furqan, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Iowa City, IA
Bio
Photo of James M. Levett, M.D.

James M. Levett, M.D.

Retired Cardiothoracic Surgeon
Cedar Rapids, IA
Bio
Photo of Timothy E. Sawyer, M.D.

Timothy E. Sawyer, M.D.

Radiation Oncologist
Boise, ID
Bio
Photo of Matthew W. Schoolfield, M.D.

Matthew W. Schoolfield, M.D.

Cardiothoracic Surgeon
Boise, ID
Bio
Photo of Edward R. Setser, M.D.

Edward R. Setser, M.D.

Cardiothoracic Surgeon
Idaho Falls, ID
Bio
Photo of Samuel Armato, M.D.

Samuel Armato, M.D.

Radiologist
Chicago, IL
Bio
Photo of Peter Baik, M.D.

Peter Baik, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Zion, IL
Bio
Photo of Traves D. Crabtree, M.D.

Traves D. Crabtree, M.D.

Cardiothoracic Surgeon
Springfield, IL
Bio
Photo of Hedy Lee Kindler, M.D.

Hedy Lee Kindler, M.D.

Director of the Mesothelioma Program
Chicago, IL
Bio
Photo of Muaiaid Kittaneh, M.D.

Muaiaid Kittaneh, M.D.

Retired Hematologist/Oncologist
Orland Park, IL
Bio
Photo of Michael J. Liptay, M.D.

Michael J. Liptay, M.D.

Cardiothoracic Surgeon
Chicago, IL
Bio
Photo of Kiran K. Turaga, M.D.

Kiran K. Turaga, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
Chicago, IL
Bio
Photo of Wickii Thambiah Vigneswaran, M.D.

Wickii Thambiah Vigneswaran, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Maywood, IL
Bio
Photo of Anita F. Conte, M.D.

Anita F. Conte, M.D.

Retired Medical Oncologist/Hematologist
Columbus, IN
Bio
Photo of Dr. Chadrick E. Denlinger

Dr. Chadrick E. Denlinger

Professor of Surgery
Indianapolis, IN
Bio
Photo of Michael T. Slaughter, M.D.

Michael T. Slaughter, M.D.

Medical Oncologist/Hematologist
Indianapolis, IN
Bio
Photo of Ali Ahmad, M.D.

Ali Ahmad, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
Wichita, KS
Bio
Photo of Chao Huang, M.D.

Chao Huang, M.D.

Director of the Lung Program
Westwood, KS
Bio
Photo of Prakash Neupane, M.D.

Prakash Neupane, M.D.

Medical Hematologist/Oncologist
Westwood, KS
Bio
Photo of Victor H. van Berkel, M.D.

Victor H. van Berkel, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Louisville, KY
Bio
Photo of Goetz H. Kloecker, M.D.

Goetz H. Kloecker, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Louisville, KY
Bio
Photo of Timothy W. Mullett, M.D.

Timothy W. Mullett, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Lexington, KY
Bio
Photo of Brian L. Pettiford, M.D.

Brian L. Pettiford, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
New Orleans, LA
Bio
Photo of Suma Satti Reddy, M.D.

Suma Satti Reddy, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
New Orleans, LA
Bio
Photo of Raphael Bueno, M.D.

Raphael Bueno, M.D.

Chief of the Division of Thoracic Surgery and Director of the International Mesothelioma Program
Boston, MA
Bio
Photo of Dr. Pasi A. Jänne

Dr. Pasi A. Jänne

Director of the Lowe Center for Thoracic Oncology
Boston, MA
Bio
Photo of Michael S. Kent, M.D.

Michael S. Kent, M.D.

Director of Minimally Invasive Thoracic Surgery
Boston, MA
Bio
Photo of Richard L. Kradin, M.D.

Richard L. Kradin, M.D.

Retired Associate Pathologist
Boston, MA
Bio
Photo of David J. Kwiatkowski, M.D.

David J. Kwiatkowski, M.D.

Senior Physician
Boston, MA
Bio
Photo of M. Blair Marshall, M.D.

M. Blair Marshall, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Boston, MA
Bio
Photo of Scott J. Swanson, M.D.

Scott J. Swanson, M.D.

Director of Minimally Invasive Thoracic Surgery
Boston, MA
Bio
Photo of Chi-Fu Jeffrey Yang, M.D.

Chi-Fu Jeffrey Yang, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Boston, MA
Bio
Photo of Julie Renee Brahmer, M.D.

Julie Renee Brahmer, M.D.

Medical Oncologist and Director of the Thoracic Oncology Program
Baltimore, MD
Bio
Photo of Patrick Forde, M.D.

Patrick Forde, M.D.

Director of the Thoracic Cancer Clinical Research Program
Baltimore, MD
Bio
Photo of Raffit Hassan, M.D.

Raffit Hassan, M.D.

Chief of the Thoracic and GI Malignancies Branch and Senior Investigator
Bethesda, MD
Bio
Photo of Petr F. Hausner, M.D.

Petr F. Hausner, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Baltimore, MD
Bio
Photo of Christine L. Lau, M.D.

Christine L. Lau, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Baltimore, MD
Bio
Photo of Stephen C. Yang, M.D.

Stephen C. Yang, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Baltimore, MD
Bio
Photo of Dr. Seth D. Blank

Dr. Seth D. Blank

Thoracic/Cardiovascular Surgeon
Augusta, ME
Bio
Photo of Gary M. Hochheiser, M.D.

Gary M. Hochheiser, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
Scarborough, ME
Bio
Photo of Richard N. Berri, M.D.

Richard N. Berri, M.D.

Director of Surgical Oncology and Peritoneal Malignancies Program
Grosse Pointe Woods, MI
Bio
Photo of Shirish M. Gadgeel, M.D.

Shirish M. Gadgeel, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Detroit, MI
Bio
Photo of Gregory P. Kalemkerian, M.D.

Gregory P. Kalemkerian, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Ann Arbor, MI
Bio
Photo of Ayman Soubani, M.D.

Ayman Soubani, M.D.

Thoracic Oncologist
Detroit, MI
Bio
Photo of Dr. Elliot Wakeam

Dr. Elliot Wakeam

Thoracic Surgeon
Ann Arbor, MI
Bio
Photo of Robert Kratzke, M.D.

Robert Kratzke, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Minneapolis, MN
Bio
Photo of Aaron S. Mansfield, M.D.

Aaron S. Mansfield, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Rochester, MN
Bio
Photo of Tobias Peikert, M.D.

Tobias Peikert, M.D.

Critical Care Specialist and Pulmonologist
Rochester, MN
Bio
Photo of Ramaswamy Govindan, M.D.

Ramaswamy Govindan, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Saint Louis, MO
Bio
Photo of Alexander Patterson, M.D.

Alexander Patterson, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Saint Louis, MO
Bio
Photo of George E. Abraham III, M.D.

George E. Abraham III, M.D.

Pulmonologist
Jackson, MS
Bio
Photo of Pierre E. De Delva, M.D.

Pierre E. De Delva, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Jackson, MS
Bio
Photo of John C. Ruckdeschel, M.D.

John C. Ruckdeschel, M.D.

Retired Medical Oncologist and Director
Jackson, MS
Bio
Photo of John M. Schallenkamp, M.D.

John M. Schallenkamp, M.D.

Radiation Oncologist and Medical Director of Oncology
Billings, MT
Bio
Photo of David H. Harpole, M.D.

David H. Harpole, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Durham, NC
Bio
Photo of Edward A. Levine, M.D.

Edward A. Levine, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
Winston-Salem, NC
Bio
Photo of Jill Ohar, M.D.

Jill Ohar, M.D.

Pulmonologist
Winston-Salem, NC
Bio
Photo of Pragatheeshwar Thirunavukarasu, M.D.

Pragatheeshwar Thirunavukarasu, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
Fayetteville, NC
Bio
Photo of Sabha Ganai, M.D.

Sabha Ganai, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
Fargo, ND
Bio
Photo of Preston Steen, M.D.

Preston Steen, M.D.

Medical Oncologist/Hematologist/Palliative Medicine Specialist
Fargo, ND
Bio
Photo of Dr. Daniel M. Tuvin

Dr. Daniel M. Tuvin

Surgical Oncologist
Fargo, ND
Bio
Photo of Jason M. Foster, M.D.

Jason M. Foster, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
Omaha, NE
Bio
Photo of Rudy P. Lackner, M.D.

Rudy P. Lackner, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Omaha, NE
Bio
Photo of Brian W. Loggie, M.D.

Brian W. Loggie, M.D.

Chief of Division of Surgical Oncology & Director of the Cancer Center at Creighton University Medical Center
Omaha, NE
Bio
Photo of Robert Winter, M.D.

Robert Winter, M.D.

Consultant Respiratory Physician
Nottingham, NG7 2FT
Bio
Photo of Konstantin H. Dragnev, M.D.

Konstantin H. Dragnev, M.D.

Medical Oncologist/Hematologist
Lebanon, NH
Bio
Photo of John A. Federico, M.D.

John A. Federico, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Portsmouth, NH
Bio
Photo of David J. Finley, M.D.

David J. Finley, M.D.

Director of the Comprehensive Thoracic Oncology Program
Lebanon, NH
Bio
Photo of H. Richard Alexander, Jr., M.D.

H. Richard Alexander, Jr., M.D.

Chief Surgical Officer
New Brunswick, NJ
Bio
Photo of Bruce G. Haffty, M.D.

Bruce G. Haffty, M.D.

Chief of Staff and Chair of Radiation Oncology
New Brunswick, NJ
Bio
Photo of Charles Dietl, M.D.

Charles Dietl, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Albuquerque, NM
Bio
Photo of Fadi Braiteh, M.D.

Fadi Braiteh, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Las Vegas, NV
Bio
Photo of Nicholas J. Vogelzang, M.D.

Nicholas J. Vogelzang, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Las Vegas, NV
Bio
Photo of John D. Allendorf, M.D.

John D. Allendorf, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
Patchogue, NY
Bio
Photo of Shahriyour Andaz, M.D.

Shahriyour Andaz, M.D.

Director of Thoracic Oncology
Lynbrook, NY
Bio
Photo of Robert J. Cerfolio, M.D.

Robert J. Cerfolio, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon & Director of Clinical Thoracic Surgery and Director of NYU Langone Lung Cancer Center
New York, NY
Bio
Photo of John A. Chabot, M.D.

John A. Chabot, M.D.

Chief of the Division of GI & Endocrine Surgery and Executive Director of the Pancreas Center
New York, NY
Bio
Photo of Cliff P. Connery, M.D.

Cliff P. Connery, M.D.

Cardiothoracic Surgeon
Poughkeepsie, NY
Bio
Photo of Raja M. Flores, M.D.

Raja M. Flores, M.D.

Chair of the Department of Thoracic Surgery
New York, NY
Bio
Photo of Giuseppe Giaccone, M.D.

Giuseppe Giaccone, M.D.

Chief of Thoracic Oncology
New York, NY
Bio
Photo of Daniel M. Labow, M.D.

Daniel M. Labow, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
New York, NY
Bio
Photo of Harvey Pass, M.D.

Harvey Pass, M.D.

Director of General Thoracic Surgery and Chief of Thoracic Oncology
New York, NY
Bio
Photo of Roman Perez-Soler, M.D.

Roman Perez-Soler, M.D.

Chief of the Division of Medical Oncology
Bronx, NY
Bio
Photo of Stephen C. Rush, M.D.

Stephen C. Rush, M.D.

Radiation Oncologist
New York, NY
Bio
Photo of Umut Sarpel, M.D.

Umut Sarpel, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
New York, NY
Bio
Photo of Daniel H. Sterman, M.D.

Daniel H. Sterman, M.D.

Director of Multidisciplinary Pulmonary Oncology Program
New York, NY
Bio
Photo of Emanuela Taioli, M.D.

Emanuela Taioli, M.D.

Director of the Institute for Translational Epidemiology and the Center for the Study of Thoracic Diseases Outcomes
New York, NY
Bio
Photo of Tracey L. Weigel, M.D.

Tracey L. Weigel, M.D.

Chief of Thoracic Surgery
Valhalla, NY
Bio
Photo of Andrea S. Wolf, M.D.

Andrea S. Wolf, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
New York, NY
Bio
Photo of Sai Yendamuri, M.D.

Sai Yendamuri, M.D.

Director of the Thoracic Surgery Laboratory
Buffalo, NY
Bio
Photo of David P. Carbone, M.D.

David P. Carbone, M.D.

Medical Oncologist and Director of the James Thoracic Center
Columbus, OH
Bio
Photo of Edmund Folefac, M.D.

Edmund Folefac, M.D.

Medical Oncologist/Hematologist
Columbus, OH
Bio
Photo of Nathan Pennell, M.D., Ph.D.

Nathan Pennell, M.D., Ph.D.

Medical Oncologist and Director of the TCI Lung Cancer Medical Oncology Program
Cleveland, OH
Bio
Photo of James Stevenson, M.D.

James Stevenson, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Cleveland, OH
Bio
Photo of Claire Verschraegen, M.D.

Claire Verschraegen, M.D.

Medical Oncologist and Associate Director of Translational Research
Columbus, OH
Bio
Photo of Daniel Nader, M.D.

Daniel Nader, M.D.

Retired Pulmonologist
Tulsa, OK
Bio
Photo of J. Matthew Reinersman, M.D.

J. Matthew Reinersman, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Oklahoma City, OK
Bio
Photo of Rachel E. Sanborn, M.D.

Rachel E. Sanborn, M.D.

Medical Oncologist and Co-Director of the Providence Thoracic Oncology Program
Portland, OR
Bio
Photo of Paul H. Schipper, M.D.

Paul H. Schipper, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Portland, OR
Bio
Photo of Steven M. Albelda, M.D.

Steven M. Albelda, M.D.

Vice Chief and Director of Lung Research, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine
Philadelphia, PA
Bio
Photo of David Bartlett, M.D.

David Bartlett, M.D.

Chair of AHN Cancer Institute
Erie, PA
Bio
Photo of Neil A. Christie, M.D.

Neil A. Christie, M.D.

Cardiothoracic Surgeon
Pittsburgh, PA
Bio
Photo of Joel D. Cooper, M.D.

Joel D. Cooper, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Philadelphia, PA
Bio
Photo of Cherie P. Erkmen, M.D.

Cherie P. Erkmen, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon and Director of Lung Cancer Screening Program
Philadelphia, PA
Bio
Photo of Joseph S. Friedberg, M.D.

Joseph S. Friedberg, M.D.

Co-Director, Temple Health Mesothelioma and Pleural Disease Program
Philadelphia, PA
Bio
Photo of Larry R. Kaiser, M.D.

Larry R. Kaiser, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon and President & CEO of Temple University Heath System
Philadelphia, PA
Bio
Photo of Dr. Giorgos C. Karakousis, M.D.

Dr. Giorgos C. Karakousis, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
Philadelphia, PA
Bio
Photo of Rodney J. Landreneau, M.D.

Rodney J. Landreneau, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
DuBois, PA
Bio
Photo of Corey J. Langer, M.D.

Corey J. Langer, M.D.

Director of Thoracic Oncology
Philadelphia, PA
Bio
Photo of James D. Luketich, M.D.

James D. Luketich, M.D.

Director of Thoracic Surgical Oncology and Co-Director of the Lung Cancer Center
Pittsburgh, PA
Bio
Photo of James Pingpank, M.D.

James Pingpank, M.D.

Surgical Oncologist
Pittsburgh, PA
Bio
Photo of Sunil Singhal, M.D.

Sunil Singhal, M.D.

Director of the Thoracic Surgery Research Laboratory
Philadelphia, PA
Bio
Photo of Antoinette Wozniak

Antoinette Wozniak

Thoracic Medical Oncologist
Pittsburgh, PA
Bio
Photo of Jack A. Elias, M.D.

Jack A. Elias, M.D.

Retired Mesothelioma Specialist
Providence, RI
Bio
Photo of John Pella, M.D.

John Pella, M.D.

Pulmonologist
Cranston, RI
Bio
Photo of Sundaresan T. Sambandam, M.D.

Sundaresan T. Sambandam, M.D.

Hematologist & Oncologist
Cranston, RI
Bio
Photo of Anthony Testa, M.D.

Anthony Testa, M.D.

Hematologist & Oncologist
Providence, RI
Bio
Photo of Alice Boylan, M.D.

Alice Boylan, M.D.

Chief of Acute, Critical, and Trauma
Charleston, SC
Bio
Photo of Carol A Sherman, M.D.

Carol A Sherman, M.D.

Thoracic Medical Oncologist
Charleston, SC
Bio
Photo of Ashraf A. Elshami, M.D.

Ashraf A. Elshami, M.D.

Pulmonologist
Sioux Falls, SD
Bio
Photo of Michael Keppen, M.D.

Michael Keppen, M.D.

Medical Oncologist/Hematologist and Director of the Sanford Lung Tumor Program
Sioux Falls, SD
Bio
Photo of Kamran Idrees, M.D.

Kamran Idrees, M.D.

Chief of Division of Surgical Oncology & Endocrine Surgery, Director of Pancreatic and GI Surgical Oncology and Director of Peritoneal Surface Malignancy/HIPEC Program
Nashville, TN
Bio
Photo of Eric S. Lambright, M.D.

Eric S. Lambright, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon and Surgical Director of Lung Transplant
Nashville, TN
Bio
Photo of Dr. Robert A. Ramirez

Dr. Robert A. Ramirez

Medical Oncologist
Nashville, TN
Bio
Photo of Bryan Burt, M.D.

Bryan Burt, M.D.

Chief of the Division of Thoracic Surgery and Program Director of General Thoracic Surgery Fellowship
Houston, TX
Bio
Photo of Shawn S. Groth, M.D.

Shawn S. Groth, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon and Director of Esophageal Surgical Services
Houston, TX
Bio
Photo of Kemp Kernstine, M.D.

Kemp Kernstine, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon and Chief of the Division of Thoracic Surgery
Dallas, TX
Bio
Photo of Cesar A. Moran, M.D.

Cesar A. Moran, M.D.

Co-Director of Thoracic Malignancies Tissue Bank and Co-Director of (Pathology) Lung Cancer SPORE
Houston, TX
Bio
Photo of Kanwal Raghav, M.D.

Kanwal Raghav, M.D.

Gastrointestinal (GI) Medical Oncologist
Houston, TX
Bio
Photo of David C. Rice, M.D.

David C. Rice, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Houston, TX
Bio
Photo of Robert Taylor Ripley, M.D.

Robert Taylor Ripley, M.D.

Director of the Mesothelioma Treatment Center
Houston, TX
Bio
Photo of Anne S. Tsao, M.D.

Anne S. Tsao, M.D.

Director of the Department of Mesothelioma Program
Houston, TX
Bio
Photo of Anna Chalmers, M.D.

Anna Chalmers, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Salt Lake City, UT
Bio
Photo of Shiven B. Patel, M.D.

Shiven B. Patel, M.D.

Medical Oncologist/Hematologist
Salt Lake City, UT
Bio
Photo of Ryan Gentzler, M.D.

Ryan Gentzler, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Charlottesville, VA
Bio
Photo of Steven Ades, M.D.

Steven Ades, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Burlington, VT
Bio
Photo of Christopher J. Anker, M.D.

Christopher J. Anker, M.D.

Radiation Oncologist
Burlington, VT
Bio
Photo of Brooke Mossman, M.D.

Brooke Mossman, M.D.

University Distinguished Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Burlington, VT
Bio
Photo of David Johnstone, M.D.

David Johnstone, M.D.

Cardiothoracic Surgeon
Milwaukee, WI
Bio
Photo of H. Ian Robins, M.D.

H. Ian Robins, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Madison, WI
Bio
Photo of Nepal C. Chowdhury, M.D.

Nepal C. Chowdhury, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Huntington, WV
Bio
Photo of Rebecca S. Wolfer, M.D.

Rebecca S. Wolfer, M.D.

Thoracic Surgeon
Huntington, WV
Bio
Photo of Joseph Rosen, M.D.

Joseph Rosen, M.D.

Medical Oncologist
Casper, WY
Bio
Photo of Robert L. Tobin, M.D.

Robert L. Tobin, M.D.

Radiation Oncologist
Casper, WY
Bio
05. First Appointment Expectations

What to Expect at Your First Mesothelioma Appointment

Mesothelioma patients may feel many emotions before their first appointment with a specialist. Preparation can help individuals feel calmer and make the most of the appointment.

It’s important to remember that patients do not need to make any firm treatment decisions at this first appointment. Patients and their loved ones should take the time they need to ask questions. They may want to spend time learning more about recommendations to feel empowered in their decisions.

What to Bring to Your Mesothelioma Appointment

  • A friend or family member that can offer support, ask questions and listen
  • A list of any questions and concerns
  • A list of current allergies
  • A list of current medications, vitamins and supplements
  • A notebook to record topics discussed during the appointment
  • Any new patient forms sent prior to the appointment
  • Copies of insurance cards
  • Prior medical records or scans
  • Records of work history or suspected asbestos exposure
  • Timeline of your observed symptoms, including when they developed and how severe they are

Patients may have differing experiences at their first appointment. In general, the mesothelioma specialist will go over the patient’s diagnosis and medical history. They can go into detail about the patient’s specific case, such as the stage and cell type. The doctor may also go over test results, such as imaging scans taken.

After reviewing the case and answering questions, the doctor may recommend a treatment plan. Patients and their loved ones should ask questions to learn more. Treatment decisions do not need to be made that day.

06. Questions for Mesothelioma Doctors

Questions Patients Should Ask Their Doctor

Mesothelioma patients or their loved ones should feel empowered to ask their doctor any questions they have. The mesothelioma oncologist is there to support and care for them beyond administering treatment.

Questions to Ask a Mesothelioma Specialist

  • How long have you been treating mesothelioma?
  • How many mesothelioma cases do you treat each year?
  • For my diagnosis, is there a treatment plan you can recommend?
  • How effective do you believe the treatment will be?
  • Are there any risks or side effects associated with the available treatment options?
  • If yes, how severe are they?
  • What kind of recovery times can I expect?
  • Am I eligible for any clinical trials?
  • How can I begin preparing for these treatments?
  • How do you prefer to communicate? By phone or email?
  • How can I seek a second opinion?

Patients may consider bringing a notebook to their appointments. It might be helpful to take notes, write down follow-up questions and keep track of important information. Patients may also consider asking a friend or loved one to accompany them. A loved one may come up with additional questions and act as a support system.

Seeking care from a mesothelioma doctor is an important step following a diagnosis. Patients should find the right doctor for them. Choosing a mesothelioma specialist can help ensure patients get the best care possible. A custom treatment plan for their individual needs may be the most effective way to improve prognosis.

07. Common Questions

Common Questions About Mesothelioma Doctors

What is the difference between an oncologist and a mesothelioma doctor?

Mesothelioma doctors understand the details of the rare cancer. For instance, doctors understand mesothelioma locations, cell types and progression. General oncologists may not have experience diagnosing or treating mesothelioma. Doctors who specialize in mesothelioma will have a deeper understanding of the disease. They will also be aware of the latest treatment options. Mesothelioma doctors may specialize in different fields. For instance, a pleural mesothelioma specialist may also specialize in thoracic surgery.

Why is it important to see a mesothelioma doctor?

Mesothelioma is a rare cancer that requires specialized care. A top mesothelioma doctor has the experience and expertise needed to accurately diagnose the disease. Specialists can determine a customized treatment plan. Once diagnosed, treatment may be the most effective way to improve prognosis.

Should you seek a second opinion from a mesothelioma doctor?

It can be helpful to seek a second opinion from a doctor specialized in your type of mesothelioma. Mesothelioma specialists have extensive knowledge and training for this rare cancer. They are also well-versed in available treatment methods. Seeking an expert can ensure an accurate diagnosis and help the patient get the best treatment plan possible.

What type of doctors treat asbestos-related cancers?

Physicians who treat mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer and other asbestos diseases may have various medical specialties. A patient’s care team may be made up of mesothelioma surgeons, oncologists and other health professionals. Unlike general physicians, mesothelioma doctors will stay current with the latest mesothelioma research. They also understand the best treatments.