Six examples of malignant mesothelioma appearing as a localized pleural mass are described. There were four women and two men, ranging in age from 42 to 76 years. A history of asbestos exposure was obtained from three patients. The tumors ranged in size from 2.8 to 10 cm. Two were pedunculated and four were sessile with broad-based pleural attachments. Histologically, three tumors were purely epithelioid and three were biphasic. Immunohistochemical stains in all six cases were positive for cytokeratin and negative for carcinoembryonic antigen. Five were also positive for epithelial membrane antigen. Five were negative for Leu-M1, while one showed focal staining in a peripheral membrane pattern. Electron microscopy in two purely epithelioid tumors showed long, thin microvilli, well-developed desmosomes, and numerous tonofilaments. Flow cytometry showed an aneuploid DNA content in four tumors and a diploid content in one. Flow cytometry in five cases identified a DNA aneuploid cell population in four tumors and a diploid population in one. Three patients showed signs of local recurrences 4, 7, and 18 months after excision and died of their disease 12, 10, and 24 months after diagnosis, respectively. Three patients are well with no evidence of disease 8, 24, and 96 months after diagnosis. These findings indicate that malignant mesotheliomas of the pleura may rarely appear as a localized mass. The biologic behavior of such tumors is difficult to predict, but some patients survive disease-free for a long time after surgical excision.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine