The role of intracavitary therapies in the treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma

Pietro Bertoglio, Vittorio Aprile, Marcello Carlo Ambrogi, Alfredo Mussi, Marco Lucchi


Surgery is one of the steps of multimodality approach for the treatment of MPM. Due to anatomical features, microscopically radical (R0) resection is never possible and a Macroscopic Complete Resection (R1) is considered the target for mesothelioma surgeons. Recently, intracavitary therapies have been described with the aim of extending the loco-regional effect of surgery. Different agents might be administered intrapleurally: chemotherapy drugs are the most widely used, but also photodynamic therapy (PDT) showed to lead to satisfactory long-term outcomes; furthermore, immunotherapies and gene therapies have been also reported. Despite promising results, no high-quality evidences are currently available and controlled randomized trials are required to establish the exact role of intracavitary therapies and to standardize the technique.