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    Mesothelioma Cancer | Types of Mesothelioma Tumor

    Types of mesothelioma

    There are several types of mesothelioma depending on where it originates and the type of cancer cell that makes up the tumor.

    Four main types of mesothelioma by location

    A mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that originates in the mesothelium, a thin layer of cells that protect the internal organs of the body. The location of the mesothelioma tumor is the main way in which the type of mesothelioma is determined. The name of mesothelioma is also based on the location. To determine the type of mesothelioma you have, your primary care physician will refer you to an oncologist or mesothelioma specialist who will perform a more detailed evaluation.

    Pleural mesothelioma (lungs)

    Pleural mesothelioma is the most common form of cancer, accounting for approximately 75% of all cases. This type of mesothelioma develops in the lining of the pulmonary cavity, known as the pleura, and is often revealed by computerized tomography or magnetic resonance imaging of the chest. Obtaining a true diagnosis usually requires a tissue biopsy by needle aspiration or thoracotomy.

    Peritoneal mesothelioma (Abdomen)

    The second most frequent type is peritoneal mesothelioma, responsible for around 10% of all cases. The abdominal cavity and its organs are all lined with mesothelial cells. In peritoneal mesothelioma, a CT or an MRI of the abdomen will usually reveal a thickening of the peritoneal lining. Less commonly, small nodules or a single larger tumor may be present. A surgical or needle biopsy is required for the diagnosis of the cell type.

    Pericardial mesothelioma (heart)

    Pericardial mesothelioma accounts for approximately 1% of all cases of mesothelioma. The pericardium is the lining of the heart cavity, whose outer layer consists of mesothelial cells. Pericardial mesothelioma is extremely rare, but when there is evidence of a pericardial tumor, mesothelioma is the most common cause. The only way to diagnose pericardial mesothelioma is to obtain a tissue biopsy through a thoracotomy.

    Testicular mesothelioma (testicles)

    Testicular mesothelioma originates in the tissue of the tunica vaginalis and is extremely rare, with only around 100 cases reported. Because it is so rare, it is difficult to completely understand this type of mesothelioma and the most effective way to treat it. The most commonly affected age group is between 55 and 75 years old, but a small number of patients are under 25 years old. As in all cases of mesothelioma, there is a strong association with occupational exposure to asbestos. The route from asbestos to the testicular region is not understood.

    Scrotal ultrasound is most often used to obtain images of the area. If there is a hydrocele (fluid buildup), a needle biopsy can provide cells for a diagnosis. Otherwise, surgical excision of the tumor with cell-type analysis will provide the diagnosis.

    Testicular mesothelioma is aggressive cancer in which more than half will experience recurrence and 40% will die from the disease. The complete elimination of the affected testicle so far has shown the best results. There is no well-established protocol for the treatment of malignant testicular mesothelioma because it is very rare.

    There is no constant set of symptoms unique to testicular mesothelioma. Commonly people are treated for one or two incorrect diagnoses before a diagnosis is finally made in the surgery.

    Mesothelioma tumors: Benign vs. Malignant

    Mesothelioma tumors can also be identified as malignant or benign. A malignant or cancerous tumor is considered dangerous because the cells can grow and divide quickly and uncontrollably, destroying tissue and spreading to other parts of the body. Benign tumors are slow-growing and, in general, do not begin to metastasize or grow and spread to other areas of the body. Benign tumors also usually take the form of a single mass, rather than the spread or formation of lamina usually associated with malignant mesothelioma.

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