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Adenomatoid Mesothelioma

Adenomatoid mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer affecting the lung’s lining. It is caused by exposure to asbestos, which can be found in older building materials such as insulation and ceiling tiles.

Adenomatoid mesothelioma is not as common as other types of mesothelioma. It is a subtype of epithelioid mesothelioma.

Adenomatoid mesothelioma is frequently mistaken for adenomatoid tumors and therefore overlooked. This can lead to a poorer prognosis as treatment may be delayed.

Key Facts About Adenomatoid Mesothelioma

  • It is a subtype of epithelioid mesothelioma.
  • Studies indicate that cases of adenomatoid mesothelioma make up approximately 5% of all cases of pleural mesothelioma.
  • One 2010 study suggested a mean survival of 10 months from the time of diagnosis.
  • Pleural adenomatoid mesothelioma cells can be either malignant or benign.
  • Adenomatoid mesothelioma cells that develop in the peritoneum are almost always benign.
  • Adenomatoid mesothelioma has a better outlook than sarcomatoid mesothelioma.

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What Is Adenomatoid Mesothelioma?

Adenomatoid mesothelioma is an aggressive form of cancer that occurs in the lining of the lungs. The tumor cells have a resemblance to adenomas, which are benign tumors, but they are not necessarily benign.

Adenomatoid mesothelioma is caused by exposure to asbestos and can be treated with surgery. It is most common in the chest cavity lining, though it can also affect other parts of the body.

Adenomatoid mesothelioma can be called either “glandular mesothelioma” or “microglandular mesothelioma” and has been known to affect both men and women.

It can be benign, and this is especially common in adenomatoid mesothelioma cells that develop in the peritoneum.

However, it can also be malignant, which means that it is cancerous. One study suggests that it may be detrimental to always categorize adenomatoid mesothelioma as benign and should instead be considered a malignant tumor.

What Do Adenomatoid Cells Look Like?

Adenomatoid cells are a subtype of epithelioid mesothelioma. Therefore, unlike their sarcomatoid counterparts, they are flat in shape, rather than spindle-shaped.

When viewed under a microscope, adenomatoid cells often appear as tubular spaces of varying size composed of flattened cells resembling endothelium.

What Is an Adenomatoid Tumor?

Adenomatoid tumors are non-cancerous tumors that grow in the gland cells of the lung tissue. Adenomatoid tumors are the second most common type of non-cancerous lung tumor and are typically benign.

These can be removed through surgery and typically do not recur once resected, provided the entire tumor is removed.

What Causes Adenomatoid Mesothelioma?

Mesothelioma is caused by exposure to asbestos. People who worked with asbestos in the past are more likely to develop mesothelioma than people who have never been exposed to it.

Asbestos is a natural mineral that was mined and used extensively in the United States and other countries until it was banned in 1989.

Asbestos is a naturally occurring fibrous mineral that can be found all over the world. It has been mined for centuries, used to insulate buildings, make textiles, and, more recently to provide fireproofing on some building materials.

The use of asbestos has been banned or restricted in some parts of the world due to health risks associated with exposure to asbestos fibers.

When asbestos fibers enter the body, they cause irritation to the mesothelium, which can lead to scarring and mesothelioma over a period of decades. Most people diagnosed with mesothelioma were exposed to asbestos decades prior. Mesothelioma takes this long to present symptoms, by which time is it usually considered to be fatal.


Symptoms of Adenomatoid Mesothelioma

If the adenomatoid mesothelioma is benign, there may be no symptoms. However, this depends on the size and the location of the tumor.

Additionally, if the adenomatoid mesothelioma is malignant, there will likely be symptoms. The symptoms of mesothelioma are different for each person, but they often include shortness of breath and a persistent cough that does not go away. Other symptoms can include chest pain, weight loss, and fatigue.

Other symptoms may include:

  • fever
  • heart murmur
  • irregular bowel movements
  • low appetite
  • lumps under the skin on the chest
  • nausea or vomiting
  • night sweats

Diagnosing Adenomatoid Mesothelioma

It is often difficult to diagnose this type of tumor because it has many features in common with other tumors, such as adenocarcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma. For this reason, it is often misdiagnosed and this can lead to a poorer prognosis when they are eventually correctly diagnosed.

A biopsy is the only way to diagnose adenomatoid mesothelioma definitively. This involves taking a small sample of cells from the tumor and analyzing them in a lab.

A typical diagnosis begins with a physical exam. The doctor will also ask questions about the patient’s symptoms and medical history to help make a diagnosis.

A chest X-ray or CT scan may be used to identify a tumor in the lungs, while blood tests can help identify if there are any abnormalities in the blood cells. Biopsies will be ordered to confirm the diagnosis. Doctors then use this information to formulate a plan of treatment.

What are the Treatment Options for Adenomatoid Mesothelioma?

If the adenomatoid mesothelioma tumor is benign, surgery is usually effective at removing it, and, often, no further treatment is required.

If it is discovered to be malignant, treatment options for adenomatoid mesothelioma are the standard ones for all mesothelioma. They include:


Surgery is a treatment option for mesothelioma patients who are in good health. The goal of the procedure is to remove as much of the tumor as possible, while also removing any surrounding tissue that could become cancerous if left untreated.

There are two types of surgery: open surgery and minimally invasive surgery.

Open surgery requires an incision that is made into the chest cavity and then expanded to expose the tumor. Minimally invasive surgeries use smaller incisions, which can be done through a small tube inserted through the skin rather than an incision made directly on the chest wall.


Chemotherapy is a type of cancer treatment that uses anti-cancer drugs to stop the growth of cancer cells, either by killing the cells or by stopping them from dividing.

Chemotherapy is used in the treatment of many types of cancer, including mesothelioma. Chemotherapy is typically given as an intravenous infusion into a vein. The drugs enter the bloodstream and can affect cancer cells throughout the body.

Radiation Therapy

This treatment is also known as radiotherapy and it can be used to shrink tumors and relieve pain. It also helps to prevent the cancer from spreading to other parts of the body. Radiation therapy can be given in different ways, such as external beam, brachytherapy, or systemic chemotherapy with radiation therapy (SRT).

What is the Prognosis for Adenomatoid Mesothelioma?

One study found that there was a mean survival of 10 months from time of diagnosis.

It is important to note, though, that this study was conducted in 2011 and since then doctors have made advances in medicine. This means that your life expectancy may be greater than it would have been had you been diagnosed ten years ago.

People with types of epithelioid mesothelioma tend to live longer than those diagnosed with the sarcomatoid or biphasic cell type. Surgery is also more effective for these people, which can lead to a slightly longer survival rate.


Read on to learn the answers to several frequently asked questions regarding adenomatoid mesothelioma.

Are adenomatoid tumors cancerous?

The adenomatoid tumor is a benign lung tumor. These tumors start in the gland cells of the lung tissues. It does not spread to other parts of the body. Adenomatoid tumors are usually small, but sometimes these tumors grow to be large and show signs of bleeding inside or outside the tumor.

Can a benign lung tumor turn malignant?

A benign tumor in the lung is an abnormal buildup of tissue that is not cancerous. It does not usually cause any symptoms, but it can lead to serious consequences if left untreated or allowed to continue to grow for too long.

In some cases, what seems to be a benign tumor turns out to be a premalignant lesion, meaning that it ends up being cancerous despite initial appearances.

What causes adenomatoid mesothelioma?

Adenomatoid mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that is caused by exposure to asbestos.

The most common way for people to be exposed to asbestos is by inhaling it. Asbestos fibers are microscopic and can be found in the air, so if you breathe them in, they can get into your lungs and stay there. This can lead to lung cancer or asbestosis, which causes scarring of the lungs and shortness of breath.

Next Steps

The next steps after receiving a diagnosis of adenomatoid mesothelioma depend on the stage of the disease. Generally, treatment for this condition is palliative, meaning it is not curative. This is because mesothelioma is considered to be a terminal condition.

Treatment will be tailored to each patient’s needs and may include chemotherapy and radiation therapy.