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Home / Mesothelioma / How is Pleural Mesothelioma Diagnosed?

How is Pleural Mesothelioma Diagnosed?

If you have symptoms of pleural mesothelioma, your doctor will perform a physical examination to check for lumps or other possible signs of cancer.

Based on the results of the physical examination, your doctor may order a chest X-ray and a CT scan of your chest.

Depending on the results of these tests, a biopsy may be ordered. A biopsy is the only way to diagnose pleural mesothelioma.

During a biopsy, a small portion of tissue of the affected area is removed and sent to a laboratory for examination under a microscope.

Biopsies are performed by inserting a needle through the skin to remove a piece of tissue or fluid. They may also be done through a surgical procedure during which a surgeon would make a small incision and insert a tube with a video camera to obtain a sample of the abnormal tissue.

A lab will analyze the tissue/fluid sample to determine if mesothelioma is present in the sample, as well as what type of cells are involved - which will impact the treatment plan and prognosis.

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