Mesothelioma cancer is caused by exposure to asbestos. For most patients in Pennsylvania and across the U.S., the disease develops in the lungs, but it can also occur in the heart, abdomen or testicles. Testicular mesothelioma is rare, with only around 100 known cases. That means it is also frequently misdiagnosed.
Asbestos is a natural mineral that is used in several industries. When asbestos fibers are released in the air, they can enter the lungs and become lodged within the body's mesothelial cells. Sometimes they spread to the membrane lining covering the testicles, which contains mesothelial cells. Typical symptoms of testicular mesothelioma include pain, swelling and lumps in the scrotum. Doctors will frequently order an ultrasound or CT scan to diagnose the problem, but the condition is often mistaken for a hernia. Proper diagnosis may come after blood tests, biopsy and/or surgery.
There is no cure for testicular mesothelioma, but medical care can extend a patient's life. Possible treatments include surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Unfortunately, this type of cancer is classified as aggressive, and it can quickly spread to other parts of the body. In cases where testicular mesothelioma has metastasized, doctors may recommend palliative care.
A prompt diagnosis is critical for a cancer patient's chances of survival. If cancer has spread due to a doctor's delayed diagnosis, resulting in a worsened condition, then an attorney who has experience in medical malpractice litigation could be of assistance in seeking compensation for the patient's resulting losses.
Source: Mesothelioma Research News, "Swelling of the Scrotum," Dec. 19, 2016