Incidence of malignant mesothelioma, 1999–2018
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      Mesothelioma is a rare cancer – 2,875 cases were reported in the United States in 2018. Exposure to asbestos causes most cases of mesothelioma.

      Mesothelioma is a cancer that forms in the mesothelium, the thin tissue that lines many internal organs. A diagnosis of mesothelioma is based on histology codes. These include International Classification of Diseases for Oncology, Third Edition (ICD-O-3) histology codes 9050 (mesothelioma); 9051 (fibrous mesothelioma); 9052 (epithelioid mesothelioma); 9053 (mesothelioma, biphasic); and 9055 (multicystic mesothelioma).

      Mesothelioma is also defined by the part of the body it is found in, using ICD-O-3 anatomic site codes. The most common kind of mesothelioma forms in the tissue around the lungs, called the pleura (ICD-O-3 anatomic site code C38.4). Mesothelioma may also form in the tissue in the abdomen (peritoneum; C48.0–C4.8); the tissue around the heart (pericardium; C38.0); and the tissue around the testicles (tunica vaginalis; C63.7).

      Suggested Citation: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Incidence of Malignant Mesothelioma. USCS Data Brief, no. 27. Atlanta, GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, US Department of Health and Human Services; 2022.


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