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Current problems in the diagnosis of malignant pleural mesothelioma.

The diagnosis of malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is challenging although MPM is highly aggressive tumor. The current diagnostic gold standard is principally based on light microscopic examination of hematoxylin-eosin and immunohistochemical stains of large tissue sections. However, pathological diagnosis of mesothelioma and classification of histological findings into 1 of the 3 cell types (epithelial, sarcomatoid, biphasic) are difficult. We studied correlation between initial and final histological diagnosis retrospectively from the records of 21 cases with malignant pleural mesothelioma from 1989 to 2005. The diagnosis of MPM was confirmed by histopathological examination of pleural tissue samples obtained by closed biopsy under computed tomography (CT) or ultrasonography-guided (5 cases), by biopsy under thoracoscopy with local anesthesia (9), by open biopsy via thoracotomy (2), and by video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) [5] . Pleural biopsy under those diagnostic methods led to initial diagnosis of MPM in 15 of 21 cases (71.4%) . In 6 cases (28.6%) , initial diagnoses of MPM were not confirmed because of missing malignant tissue (1 case) and relatively small and sarcomatous element (5). In 2 cases examined by closed biopsy and in 3 examined by thoracoscopy under local anesthesia, initial diagnosis of MPM were not confirmed. To get the accurate diagnosis of MPM, obtaining large tissue samples in the initial examination by less invasive thoracoscopy is recommended.

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PMID: 17249532 [PubMed - in process]
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