Mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer that occurs in the thin layer of tissue that covers the majority of our internal organs. Doctors divide mesothelioma into different types based on what part of the body is affected—most often attacking the tissue that surrounds the lungs (pleural mesothelioma). Other, less common types of mesothelioma affect tissue in the abdomen (peritoneal mesothelioma), around the heart, and, in extremely rare cases, around the testicles.
Caused by the inhalation of asbestos fibers, mesothelioma is often diagnosed in older individuals who worked with asbestos products. While the prognosis for mesothelioma is often poor, early detection and new, emerging treatments provide hope for many patients.