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Malignant Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma is not always malignant. It is possible for it to be benign which is much less dangerous.  Benign mesothelioma affects males much more than females and can grow to such a large size that it will compress the lungs.  Malignant mesothelioma is an uncontrolled growth of a tumor that invades nearby tissue and spreads throughout the body destroying the body as it moves along.

In order for doctors to diagnosis a person with benign or malignant mesothelioma they will look for early symptoms like lower back pain or chest pain and shortness of breath.  Because these are very general symptoms, it is rare to receive an early diagnosis.  More commonly a doctor will need to do a full medical history and look for exposure to asbestos.  They will also need the sue of a CT scan or CAT scan and even an MRI scan.  Then to make a positive confirmation they will need to biopsy the tissue by inserting a needle into the suspected area and removing some fluid for testing.

Once a positive diagnosis is made the doctor will treat the malignant mesothelioma is by either operating on the patient to remove the cancer, radiation therapy which uses x-rays to kill the malignant area or chemotherapy.  Click here for more information about mesothelioma treatment.

There are also several clinical trials dealing with malignant mesothelioma.  The University of Chicago Cancer Research Center is currently recruiting patients with localized malignant mesothelioma, advanced malignant mesothelioma, recurrent malignant mesothelioma, and others to test a possible new Phase II chemotherapy treatment.  Click here for more information about research articles and clinical trials.

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