Skip to main content

Pleural mesothelioma

Posted by attorney Robert McCarthy

Pleural mesothelioma is a specific kind of mesothelioma. It is a rare cancer that grows in the mesothelium (a membrane that lines quite a few of the body's organs and cavities). In pleural mesothelioma, the cancer grows in the lining of the lungs. The lining of the lungs is called the pleura or pleural membrane.

Pleural mesothelioma is brought on by the breathing in of asbestos fibers. When these fibers get into the lungs, they can move into the pleural membrane. Once in the pleural membrane, the human body has extreme problems ridding the fibers. Over a lengthy period of time, ordinarily two decades or greater, asbestos fibers trigger alterations in the pleural cells. Those alterations may result in scarring of the lungs and, over an extended period, the development of tumors.

When pleural cells become cancerous, they start to divide continually, decreasing lung capacity and producing fluid accumulation between pleural membranes. The prospects for pleural mesothelioma patients is unfortunately usually poor because it typically is captured in its later development. Nevertheless, an early medical diagnosis may significantly enhance a patient's prospects.

As with other types of mesothelioma, pleural mesothelioma is difficult to diagnose because symptoms do not typically arise for some time after initial asbestos exposure occurs. Additionally, since the symptoms of pleural mesothelioma are typical of many illnesses, the condition is often mistaken for less threatening diseases such as the flu and pneumonia.

X-rays or CT-Scans are typically used to identify pleural mesothelioma. A pleural mesothelioma medical diagnosis is made partially on symptoms, but further tests are necessary to determine the existence of cancer. Subsequent to a medical history and physical exam, affected individuals commonly go through X-rays or CT scans, to confirm the area of cancer. A sufferer also generally goes through fluid and tissue tests, or biopsies, to determine the type of cancer. Once tests and biopsies verify a diagnosis of pleural mesothelioma, those test outcomes are utilized to create a treatment strategy.

Read more:

Additional resources provided by the author

The information contained on this page is general in nature and should not be considered legal, medical or therapeutic advice. Immediately consult with a licensed attorney and enter into a written attorney client relationship to get specific and confidential legal advice on any important legal matter. For a medical or other problem, immediately consult with a medical or other appropriate professional. Nothing on this page constitutes an agreement to enter an attorney client relationship with anyone. The information contained on this page may be considered legal advertisement under the rules established by the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts and other legal authorities. We strive to post accurate information, but readers are advised not to rely on any information herein without confirming the accuracy independently. By entering unto this page the reader is acknowledging and agreeing to the preceding. If the reader does not agree with the same, the reader is advised to immediately leave this page.

Author of this guide:

Was this guide helpful?

Avvo personal injury email series

Sign up to receive a 3-part series of useful information and advice about personal injury law.

Recommended articles about Personal injury

Can't find what you're looking for?

Post a free question on our public forum.

Ask a Question

- or -

Search for lawyers by reviews and ratings.

Find a Lawyer