An Overview of Asbestos and Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma: An Iranian Perspective

Document Type : Systematic Review and Meta-analysis


1 National Research Institute of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences,Tehran, Iran.

2 Cancer Registry Center, Masih Daneshvari Hospital, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

3 Dalhousie University, Cape Breton Cancer Centre, Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada.


Asbestos refers to a group of minerals that appears naturally in the environment as bundles of fibers. The incidence rate of asbestos-related diseases has considerably increased as well as the amount of asbestos utilization in few countries. Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a rare type of aggressive and life threatening neoplasm which arise from various serous surfaces: pleura, peritoneum, tunica vaginalis and pericardium. The first case of MPM was reported in 1947. MPM etiologically is associated to the exposure of asbestos fibers. This form of malignancy is difficult to diagnose in paraclinical work-ups because mesothelioma could occur within 10-20 years of the first-time exposure to asbestos. The burden of MPM is not yet to be wholly understood. The toxic side effects of asbestos on environment and people compelled the European countries to accept the French view upon this matter. However, this approach has not been accepted by some developing countries. This review provides a brief points and facts in relation to MPM and asbestos in Iran.


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