Types of Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma by Location in the Body

There are three main types of mesothelioma, categorized by location in the body:

  • Pleural mesothelioma – affects the lining of the chest (pleura). The most common form of the disease that is estimated to account for up to 75% of the total cases of the disease.
  • Peritoneal mesothelioma – originates in the lining of the abdomen (peritoneum) and is the second most common form.
  • Pericardial Mesothelioma – an extremely rare form of mesothelioma that primarily grows on the lining of the heart (pericardium).

Mesothelioma by Cell Type

Mesothelioma can be further characterized by cell type. The disease is generally divided into four cell subtype categories that differ in aggressiveness and how they respond to treatment. Theses cell types include:

  • Epithelioid – the most common cellular subtype comprising of 50-70% of all cases of mesothelioma. Known as the least aggressive cell type that typically responds best to treatment.
  • Sarcomatoid – a rare cellular subtype and is known as the most aggressive and least responsive to treatment.
  • Biphasic (also called mixed type) – a combination of both epitheliod and sarcomatoid cells within one tumor. Treatment options and response may vary depending on ratio of each cell type.
  • Dermoplastic – the least common cellular subtype often highly associated with chest wall pain.

Contact Penn Medicine Today

Our Nurse/Patient navigator can assist you and your loved ones with questions about mesothelioma and pleural diseases; as well as scheduling appointments with our specialists. Contact us today to find out more about diagnosis and treatment options. Please call 215-662-9697.