About Pseudomyxoma Peritonei

Pseudomyxoma peritonei is pronounced sue-doh-mix-oh-muh pary-ih-ton-nee-i and is often abbreviated to PMP.  It is a rare cancer that usually starts as a small growth (adenoma) in the appendix comparable to a polyp.  This adenoma will eventually break through the appendix wall and into the peritoneum (abdominal cavity lining).  The tumors secrete a jelly-like mucus in the abdomen, which causes the abdomen to swell and compress other vital organs.

If left untreated, this mucin will engulf the abdominal cavity producing a characteristic "jelly belly".  It is this build up of mucin that generally causes symptoms.

PMP is not like other types of cancer in that it is seldom spread through the blood stream or lymphatic system, it generally remains contained within the abdomen  and spreads along inner surfaces.  Presently, it is thought to affect between one and two million people worldwide per year.

PMP symptoms usually appear after some time and are caused by the build up of resulting mucus within the abdomen.  Some sufferers do not show any symptoms for some years.

Symptoms are often initially misdiagnosed as a hernia or ovarian cancer and include but are not limited to:

bulletblob  Changes in bowel habit
 bulletblob  Loss of appetite
 bulletblob  Pelvic pain or pain within the abdominal area
 bulletblob  Appendicitis
 bulletblob  Swelling of the abdomen
 bulletblob  Weight gain and or increase in waist size
 bulletblob  Bladder discomfort

These symptoms can be caused by a variety of medical conditions which are not necessarily PMP.  However, due to the nature of this cancer it is imperative to rule out PMP as a cause.  Any unexplained symptoms should always be discussed with your doctor.

As survivors and carers, information here is from our perspective - we are not health care professionals. We are all individuals, everyone is different. We recommend that you take advice from your doctors for specific information.






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