Learn About Mediastinal Tumor

What is the definition of Mediastinal Tumor?

Mediastinal tumors are growths that form in the mediastinum. This is an area in the middle of the chest that separates the lungs.

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What are the alternative names for Mediastinal Tumor?

Thymoma - mediastinal; Lymphoma - mediastinal

What are the causes of Mediastinal Tumor?

The mediastinum is the part of the chest that lies between the sternum and the spinal column, and between the lungs. This area contains the heart, large blood vessels, windpipe (trachea), thymus gland, esophagus, and connective tissues. The mediastinum is divided into three sections:

  • Anterior (front)
  • Middle
  • Posterior (back)

Mediastinal tumors are rare.

The common location for tumors in the mediastinum depends on the age of the person. In children, tumors are more common in the posterior mediastinum. These tumors often begin in the nerves and are noncancerous (benign).

Most mediastinal tumors in adults occur in the anterior mediastinum. They are usually cancerous (malignant) lymphomas, germ cell tumors, or thymomas. These tumors are most common in middle aged and older adults.

What are the symptoms of Mediastinal Tumor?

Almost one half of mediastinal tumors cause no symptoms and are found on a chest x-ray done for another reason. Symptoms that do occur are due to pressure on (compression of) local structures and may include:

  • Chest pain
  • Fever and chills
  • Cough
  • Coughing up blood (hemoptysis)
  • Hoarseness
  • Night sweats
  • Shortness of breath
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What are the current treatments for Mediastinal Tumor?

Treatment for mediastinal tumors depends on the type of tumor and symptoms:

  • Thymic cancers are treated with surgery. It may be followed by radiation or chemotherapy, depending on the stage of the tumor and the success of the surgery.
  • Germ cell tumors are usually treated with chemotherapy.
  • For lymphomas, chemotherapy is the treatment of choice, and is possibly followed by radiation.
  • For neurogenic tumors of the posterior mediastinum, surgery is the main treatment.
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What is the outlook (prognosis) for Mediastinal Tumor?

The outcome depends on the type of tumor. Different tumors respond differently to chemotherapy and radiation.

What are the possible complications of Mediastinal Tumor?

Complications of mediastinal tumors include:

  • Spinal cord compression
  • Spread to nearby structures such as the heart, lining around the heart (pericardium), and great vessels (aorta and vena cava)

Radiation, surgery, and chemotherapy can all have serious complications.

When should I contact a medical professional for Mediastinal Tumor?

Contact your health care provider if you notice symptoms of a mediastinal tumor.

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What are the latest Mediastinal Tumor Clinical Trials?
Effect of Oscillating Positive Expiratory Pressure Therapy on the Frequency of Pulmonary Atelectasis in Thoracic Cancer Patients Undergoing Chest Surgery

Summary: Lung cancer remains the leading neoplasm in terms of incidence and mortality worldwide, each year approximately 1.6 million deaths are attributable to patients with lung neoplasms. Importantly, among the estimated 1.8 million incident cases, 58% occur among patients in developing countries, with considerable challenges in terms of access to standard of care. Moreover, in Mexico 85% of patients are...

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Effects of Oral Aloe Vera Juice on Chemotherapy and Radiation-induced Oral Mucositis and Esophagitis: a Single-blind Randomized Controlled Trial

Summary: As mentioned above, several prior studies have shown the positive effects of oral use of aloe vera juice in managing chemotherapy and radiation-induced oral mucositis and esophagitis. This study aims to add to the existing body of research around aloe vera juice and its effects on oral mucositis and esophagitis. The intention is to determine whether aloe vera juice should be considered as part of ...

What are the Latest Advances for Mediastinal Tumor?
Clinical Application of Thoracoscopic Resection of Anterior Mediastinal Tumors under the Xiphoid Process.
Thoracoscopic resection of posterior mediastinal paraganglioma: perioperative management and surgical tips.
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Malignant Extramucosal Esophageal Tumor - Yolk Sac Tumor - Case Report.
Who are the sources who wrote this article ?

Published Date: April 29, 2022
Published By: Todd Gersten, MD, Hematology/Oncology, Florida Cancer Specialists & Research Institute, Wellington, FL. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David C. Dugdale, MD, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

What are the references for this article ?

McCool FD. Diseases of the diaphragm, chest wall, pleura, and mediastinum. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 26th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 92.

Triplette M, Varghese TK, Cheng GS. Mediastinal tumors and cysts. In: Broaddus VC, Ernst JD, King TE, et al, eds. Murray and Nadel's Textbook of Respiratory Medicine. 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2022:chap 115.