What are the symptoms of pleural mesothelioma?

Pleural mesothelioma begins as small nodules on the lining of lungs. These nodules grow larger and slowly cover the entire pleural lining eventually completely encasing the lungs. In earlier stages of tumor growth, symptoms are non-specific such as fever and night sweats. Initially, the disease may be mistaken for pneumonia. Gradually increasing tumor often leads to accumulation of fluid into the pleural cavity (known as pleural effusion). [1]

The right sided chest involvement is slightly more common. The fluid compresses the lungs and leads to progressive shortness of breath and dry cough. Sometimes, large amount of fluid accumulates rapidly within hours leading to sudden onset of breathlessness. In advanced cases, patients may complain of chest pain due to spread of the cancer to bony chest wall. [2]

Pleural Mesothelioma Symptoms

The most common symptoms of pleural mesothelioma are difficulty in breathing, chest pain, or both. Occasionally, a patient may not have mesothelioma symptoms at diagnosis. Other less common symptoms include weight loss, fever, night sweats, cough, and a general feeling of not being well. [3]

  • Chest pain and pain in the lower back
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Coughing
  • Weight loss
  • Fever
  • Muscle weakness and sensory loss
  • Swelling of the face and arms
  • Hoarseness
  • Coughing up blood [4]

Prompt attention to symptoms can result in early diagnosis and treatment can result in a cure for some patients. However, for others this can improve their chances of treatment extending their life, as well as relief of some of the symptoms. [5]

By Christian L. Nielsen and Contributors



[1] Signs and symptoms – www.Wikipedia.org
[2] Mesothelioma Cancer Symptoms – www.Mayoclinic.org
[3] Mesothelioma & Lung Cancer/Mesothelioma Symptoms – www.Mesothelioma-Lung-Cancer.org
[4] Mesothelioma Symptoms – http://www.mesothelioma-net.com/info/symptoms/
[5] Mesothelioma.US

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Website updated on Nov 30, 2020