Mesothelioma

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If mesothelioma spreads

Cancer cells can spread from the mesothelium to other parts of the body. This spread is called metastasis.

Understanding how a type of cancer usually grows and spreads helps your healthcare team plan your treatment and future care.

Pleural mesothelioma

If pleural mesothelioma spreads, it can spread to the:

  • space in the chest between the lungs (mediastinum)
  • esophagus
  • thymus
  • windpipe (trachea)
  • muscles and ribs of the chest
  • opposite lung
  • thin muscle below the lungs and heart (diaphragm)
  • lymph nodes of the chest
  • liver
  • kidneys and adrenal glands
  • bones

Peritoneal mesothelioma

If peritoneal mesothelioma spreads, it can spread to:

  • the tissue covering the small intestine and colon
  • the space between the lungs and the walls of the chest
  • the liver
  • the spleen
  • other organs in the abdomen

Peritoneal mesothelioma rarely spreads outside of the abdomen.

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