Pleural mesothelioma in situ: a comprehensive review

European Journal of Cancer Prevention 2024 March 11 [Link]

Federica Danuzzo, Federico Raveglia, Francesca Spinelli, Chiara Maria Sibilia, Enrico Cassina, Lidia Libretti, Emanuele Pirondini, Antonio Tuoro, Francesca Bono, Maria Emilia Paladino, Diego Cortinovis, Francesco Petrella


Pleural mesothelioma is a rare and aggressive cancer that affects the pleura. In recent years, there has been increasing interest and attention in detecting and diagnosing early-stage or precancerous forms of mesothelioma because of its severe prognosis and short life expectancy at the time of diagnosis. Mesothelioma in situ represents a clear opportunity to improve and innovate the diagnostic approach and the multimodality treatment of mesothelioma: the diagnosis of pleural mesothelioma at the ‘in-situ phase’ means early disease detection and thus paves the way to new possible curable strategies. Since 2021, when mesothelioma in situ was finally identified and described as a new histological entity, its diagnosis and management became a challenge and the subject of ongoing research; several aspects remain open and still outstanding as regards diagnostic techniques, time and probability of progression, need for and methods of follow up, aggressive and early surgery. This narrative review aims to provide a comprehensive overview of mesothelioma in situ covering its definition, risk factors, diagnostic criteria, and tricky aspects of early detection. It also highlights its clinical significance, new perspectives, and potential future indications in the context of pleural mesothelioma multidisciplinary management.