Mesothelioma Types

Mesothelioma is a blanket term used to cover all possible variations of the disease. If you are diagnosed with mesothelioma, your diagnosis will include the specific details of the type of mesothelioma you have.

Mesothelioma Tumor Types

Mesothelioma tumors come in two basic types: benign and malignant. The type of tumor you have will play a significant role in the seriousness of the disease and effectiveness of the treatment you receive.

Benign tumors – Benign mesothelioma, often called non-malignant mesothelioma, is a less serious form of the disease. A benign tumor is one that is no longer growing or spreading. The tumor may have run its course, and it can usually be removed through surgery. Some complications may arise if the tumor is large or is attached to vital organs, such as the lungs or heart. Benign tumors can also be a sign that more serious, malignant tumors may develop in the future, so you will have to undergo regular checkups.

Malignant tumors – The other type of mesothelioma is malignant mesothelioma. Fortunately, this type is rare. If you are diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma, it means the tumor is actively growing and possibly spreading to other parts of your body. Malignant mesothelioma is difficult to diagnose, and once a diagnosis is made, the disease has often progressed to the later stages. Nearly all cases of malignant mesothelioma diagnosed today are caused by past exposure to asbestos.

Mesothelioma Types by Location

The location of your mesothelioma tumor is another major factor in categorizing your specific type of mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is a cancer of the mesothelium, a protective layer of tissue inside your body, but you have three major sites where mesothelium is present: around your lungs, around your heart and around your abdominal organs.

Pleural mesothelioma – This is the most common form of mesothelioma, and it is named for the pleura, the layer of protective tissue surrounding the lungs. Pleural mesothelioma is very dangerous because it is difficult to diagnose and because it has a tendency to spread throughout the body, including into the abdomen or the brain.

When the cancer first appears, the symptoms of pleural mesothelioma are very mild and may include occasional coughing or shortness of breath. If the symptoms persist for a long time, a doctor may order a CT scan of your chest to determine the cause. Although pleural mesothelioma can be deadly, you can improve your situation through early detection and treatment.

Pericardial mesothelioma – This is the least common type of mesothelioma. The pericardium is the layer of protective tissue around the heart. If you have this type of mesothelioma, it can disrupt the flow of your blood through your body, depriving your cells of oxygen and causing a wide range of symptoms. Many symptoms of pericardial mesothelioma are similar to those of a heart attack, including chest pain and shortness of breath.

Peritoneal mesothelioma – The peritoneum is the protective layer of tissue around the inside of the abdominal cavity and the abdominal organs. This type of mesothelioma can cause severe pain in the abdomen, obstruct the bowels, induce nausea and cause edema.

Mesothelioma Cells

Mesothelioma occurs when cells of the mesothelium grow abnormally. The cells do this in three different ways. The three types of mesothelioma cells are as follows:

Epithelial cells – Epithelial mesothelioma cells are the most common type. Anywhere from 50 to 75 percent of new cases consist of epithelial cells. Although these cancer cells are abnormal, they are uniform in shape and size. This makes them relatively easy to detect when compared to normal cells. This type of malignant cell is the one associated with most forms of lung cancer.

Sarcomatoid cells – This type of mesothelioma cell occurs in 7 to 20 percent of new cases. These oval-shaped cells have an irregular configuration and usually grow out of muscle or bone.

Biphasic cells – Biphasic mesothelioma is a combination of epithelial cells and sarcomatoid cells. They grow together but are irregularly configured, unlike epithelial cells.

It is imperative that you contact an experienced mesothelioma attorney to assess your situation and prospective claim for compensation, and we encourage you to contact the offices of Goldberg & Osborne today. Simply call 1-800-THE-EAGLE (1-800-843-3245) or fill out our online case form for your free, no obligation evaluation. We work at no cost until we win your case!


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