Stage 1 Mesothelioma

Stage 1 mesothelioma only affects the pleura (lining) of one lung or a relatively small portion of the abdomen. It is the easiest stage to treat because it hasn’t spread to other parts of the body.

The Earliest Stage

Stage 1 mesothelioma is the least advanced stage of mesothelioma. It involves the pleura on one side of the body. There is no involvement of the lymph nodes. Stage 1 patients have the bestprognosis because many different treatment options are available for stage 1 patients.

Stage 1 Treatment Options

Extrapleural Pneumonectomy

Used on stage 1 pleural mesothelioma patients, an EPP is the complete removal of the affected lung, pleura, and part of the diaphragm.

Pleurectomy with Decortication

A pleurectomy is the removal of the lining of the lung, called the pleura. Stage 1 pleural mesothelioma patients commonly receive a pleurectomy to remove cancerous tumors.


A cytoreduction is the removal of the lining of the abdomen, called the peritoneum. Stage 1 peritoneal mesothelioma patients undergo this surgery to stop the future growth of mesothelioma tumors.

Surgical treatment options are widely available because the tumor is still localized and easier to remove. Chemotherapy and radiation treatment are also used in this stage to make surgery more successful and to kill remaining cancerous cells after surgery.


The prognosis for patients with stage 1 mesothelioma is generally positive. The earlier the mesothelioma is diagnosed, the more treatment options are available. The outlook for remission is also higher than it is for the later stages of mesothelioma.

Stage 1 mesothelioma patients often have a prognosis that is over 12 months longer than the average patient.

Unfortunately, stage 1 diagnoses are rare. The latency period associated with mesothelioma can be up to 40 years from the time of asbestos exposure. When symptoms start cropping up, many patients relate their symptoms to old age or common illnesses, such as the common cold or indigestion.

Catching mesothelioma in the early stages can add considerable time to the patient’s life expectancy, but this doesn’t mean later stage patients can’t improve their prognosis. Second opinions may sometimes reveal an earlier stage disease than the original diagnosis. This was the case with mesothelioma survivor Alexis Kidd.

Stage 1 patients have some of the best opportunities to improve their prognosis. Learn how you can live longer in our free Mesothelioma Guide.

Stage 1 by Different Staging Systems

Stage 1 (Butchart System)

Stage 1 mesothelioma is localized in one small area of the pleura and confined to its point of origin.

Stage 1 (Brigham System)

In a stage 1 mesothelioma diagnosis, the cancer can be removed by surgery and the outlook is hopeful.

Stage 1 (TNM System)

Stage 1 mesothelioma shows the presence of cancer in the lining of the lungs, stomach, or heart. The cancer is localized to only one side of the body and has not metastasized to lymph nodes or other organs.