Early cytological diagnosis of diffuse malignant mesothelioma of the peritoneum: A case report

Diagnostic Cytopathology. 2008 Feb;36(2):120-3. [Link]

Pomjanski N, Grote HJ, Sander O, Heikaus S, Müller KM, Böcking A.

Institute of Cytopathology, Heinrich-Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany.


Mesotheliomas are the most frequent primary malignant tumors of serosal cavities with a poor prognosis. A definitive and early diagnosis on effusion samples is important, because recent advances in therapy for patients with mesothelioma may result in an improved outcome if they are applied to stage I disease.We report a case of malignant peritoneal mesothelioma diagnosed repeatedly by cytology in ascites fluids 1.5 yr before the diagnosis was confirmed by biopsy histology. The cytological diagnoses were supported by immunocytochemistry, DNA-cytometry, and AgNOR-analysis. Routine cytology supported by three adjuvant methods enabled us to correctly establish the diagnosis. Our case suggests that a cytological diagnosis of malignant mesothelioma supported by adjuvant methods should not be rejected even if based on negative histological results.

Keywords: mesothelioma, serosal effusion, conventional cytology, adjuvant methods