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OBJECTIVES: The study aim was to explore experiences of patients with pleural mesothelioma of follow-up care in three National Health Service (NHS) Trusts to develop recommendations for practice. DESIGN: The study design was qualitative and comprised three interlinked phases: a documentary analysis, interviews and consultation meetings. Altheide and Johnson's Analytic Realism theoretical framework guided the thematic data analysis process. SETTING: The study was conducted in three NHS Trusts in South England. Two were secondary care settings and the third was a tertiary centre. PARTICIPANTS: The secondary care trusts saw 15-20 patients with new mesothelioma per year and the tertiary centre 30-40. The tertiary centre had a designated mesothelioma team. Twenty-one patients met the inclusion criteria: >18 years, mesothelioma diagnosis and in follow-up care. Non-English speaking participants, those unable to provide written informed consent or those whom the clinical team felt would find participation too distressing were excluded. All participants were white, 71% were 70-79 years old and 71% were men. Three consultation meetings were conducted with key stakeholders including mesothelioma nurse specialists, patients with mesothelioma, carers and local clinical commissioning group members. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Specific outcomes were to gain a detailed understanding of mesothelioma follow-up care pathways and processes and to develop coproduced recommendations for practice. RESULTS: Mesothelioma pathways were not always distinct from lung cancer care pathways. All trusts provided follow-up information and resources but there was varied information on how to access local support groups, research or clinical trial participation. Five themes were developed relating to people; processes; places; purpose and perception of care. Coproduced recommendations for improving mesothelioma follow-up pathways were developed following the consultation meetings. CONCLUSIONS: This study has developed recommendations which identify the need for patients with pleural mesothelioma to access consistent, specialist, streamlined mesothelioma care, centred around specialist mesothelioma nurses and respiratory consultants, with input from the wider multidisciplinary team.

Original publication




Journal article


BMJ Open

Publication Date





adult oncology, adult palliative care, adult thoracic medicine, oncology, qualitative research