New Mesothelioma Study Compares Diagnostic Accuracy of Fluid Cytology to Biopsy, According to Surviving Mesothelioma

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Researchers in Western Australia say the the two methods are equally good at distinguishing mesothelioma subtypes and predicting survival.

Comparing Cytology and Histology in Mesothelioma Diagnosis

Mesothelioma Diagnostic Tool Evaluated

Adjusting for age, sex, site and time since first exposure showed no difference in survival between the different diagnostic approaches.

In a new review of more than 2,000 mesothelioma cases spanning 42 years, scientists at the University of Western Australia in Perth say the less invasive method of mesothelioma diagnosis is adequate for most patients. Surviving Mesothelioma has published an article on the new research. Click here to read it now.

Because mesothelioma must be diagnosed by examining cells under a microscope, the Australian scientists speculated that using lung fluid instead of a tissue sample might result in inaccurate diagnoses of malignant mesothelioma subtype.

“Adjusting for age, sex, site and time since first exposure showed no difference in survival between the different diagnostic approaches,” writes study author Sanjeevan Muruganandan, MD, a respiratory medicine specialist at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital in Perth.

According to the summary of their findings recently published in the British Journal of Cancer, the comparable survival times suggest that the mesothelioma subtype was correctly diagnosed, regardless of which method was used.

“This is significant news especially for the most fragile mesothelioma patients because it suggests that they do not necessarily have to undergo a more painful or risky biopsy procedure to feel comfortable that their histological mesothelioma diagnosis is accurate,” says Alex Strauss, Managing Editor for Surviving Mesothelioma.

For details of the new study and an explanation of the three histological subtypes of malignant mesothelioma, see Mesothelioma Diagnosis: Fluid Cytology Versus Biopsy, now available on the Surviving Mesothelioma website.

Muruganandan, S, et al, “Comparison of outcomes following a cytological or histological diagnosis of malignant mesothelioma”, February 14, 2017, British Journal of Cancer, Epub ahead of print,

For more than a decade, Surviving Mesothelioma has brought readers the most important and ground-breaking news on the causes, diagnosis and treatment of mesothelioma. All Surviving Mesothelioma news is gathered and reported directly from the peer-reviewed medical literature. Written for patients and their loved ones, Surviving Mesothelioma news helps families make more informed decisions.

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