Malignant mesothelioma is a type of cancer that develops from the thin layer of tissue that covers many of your internal organs. It typically affects the lungs and chest wall, pleural mesothelioma, but in rare occasions, the lining of the abdomen peritoneal mesothelioma and the sacs surrounding the heart or testis, can be affected.


The signs and symptoms of mesothelioma vary depending which part of the body the cancer occurs.
Pleural Mesothelioma Affects the tissue that surrounds the lungs. Symptoms may include:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Painful coughing
  • Chest pain, especially under the rib cage
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Unusual lumps (of tissue) on your chest

Peritoneal Mesothelioma

Affects the tissue in the abdomen. Symptoms may include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Abdominal swelling
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Lumps (of tissue) in the abdomen

Rare Forms of Mesothelioma

Symptoms of other forms of mesothelioma are not as clear as those for pleural and peritoneal mesothelioma because these other forms of the disease are so rare.

Pericardial Mesothelioma

Affects tissue that surrounds the heart.

  • Symptoms may include:
  • Chest pain
  • Difficulty breathing

Tunica Vaginalis

Affects the tissue surrounding the testicles. Symptoms may include:

  • Swelling of a testicle
  • A mass or unexplained lump on a testicle

Go to a Doctor

The aforementioned symptoms can be caused by many other things besides mesothelioma, some of which are serious and some of which are not. It is important to go to see a doctor if you have experienced any of the symptoms mentioned above (as well as any others). The more common forms of mesothelioma are still considered to be rare diseases. Because of this, someone who is experiencing any of the aforementioned symptoms is more likely to have a condition that is not related to mesothelioma but it is important to have this verified by a doctor as soon as possible to make sure you get the proper treatments to cure these symptoms.