Getting diagnosed

Some people are diagnosed after they become very unwell and go to A&E while others start by seeing their GP. Your GP will refer you to a specialist if they think your symptoms could be due to mesothelioma. They won’t take chances.

You then have tests to find out if there is cancer and, if so, what stage it is at.


Seeing your GP when you have symptoms of mesothelioma

Find out what to expect when you see your GP, and how to get the most out of your appointment.

Referral to a specialist for symptoms of mesothelioma

There are certain symptoms, which could be caused by pleural mesothelioma, that mean your GP should send you for an urgent chest x-ray or refer you to a specialist.

Screening for mesothelioma

Screening means testing people for early stages of an illness before they have any symptoms. There is no UK screening programme for mesothelioma.

Tests for mesothelioma

Mesothelioma can be difficult to diagnose and you might have one or more of these tests to check whether your symptoms are due to mesothelioma. Once mesothelioma is diagnosed, you have further tests to find out how big the tumour is and whether it has spread.

Last reviewed: 
28 May 2021
Next review due: 
28 May 2024
Coronavirus and cancer

We know it’s a worrying time for people with cancer, we have information to help.

Read our information about coronavirus and cancer