Mesothelioma is categorized on the basis of the part of the body where it develops. As such, there are four types of mesothelioma: pleural (lungs), peritoneal (abdomen), pericardial (heart) and testicular (testes).
Here they are described in more detail.
- Pleural mesothelioma: When mesothelioma develops in the linings of the lungs or pleura, it is called pleural mesothelioma. It is the most common type of mesothelioma and accounts for 75% of the new cases. Pleural mesothelioma is hard to diagnose. The symptoms in its early stage are unclear, but when it reaches the later stages (3 or 4), the condition deteriorates drastically. Hence, even after diagnosis, a prognosis is rarely successful.
- Peritoneal mesothelioma: This originates in the lining of the abdomen. It tends to spread to the abdominal organs like liver, spleen and the bowel. The most common symptom of this type of mesothelioma is severe abdominal pain and discomfort due to fluid build-up in that region. Prognosis of peritoneal mesothelioma is poor, but it has significantly developed in the recent years. However, chances of surviving this condition depend on the condition of the patient.
- Pericardial mesothelioma: Pericardial mesothelioma develops in the lining of the ear cavity known as pericardium. It is a sporadic form of mesothelioma and accounts for only 1% of the reported cases. The most common symptoms are similar to that of a heart attack, so there are high chances of a misdiagnosis.
- Testicular mesothelioma: It occurs in the lining of the testes known as tunica vaginalis. It is the rarest form; only 100 such cases have been reported around the world in the medical history. Since it is such a rare disease, very few people know about its symptoms, diagnosis, and prognosis.
Mesothelioma symptoms are similar to other diseases. So there are chances that it may be misdiagnosed. Consult your doctor always if you feel any discomfort in any of the areas mentioned above.