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Chest wall tumour following iodized talc pleurodesis
  1. John W. Jackson,
  2. M. H. Bennett
  1. Thoracic Surgical Unit, Harefield Hospital, Harefield, Middlesex
  2. Group Histopathology Department, Mount Vernon Hospital, Northwood, Middlesex


    Jackson, J. W., and Bennett, M. H. (1973).Thorax, 28, 788-793. Chest wall tumour following iodized talc pleurodesis. A man of 37 had an iodized talc pleurodesis carried out for recurrent spontaneous pneumothorax. There was no history of industrial exposure to asbestos. Two years later he presented with pain in the right chest and radiographs at that time showed some localized pleural thickening at the site of the thoracoscopy cannulation for introduction of talc.

    A provisional diagnosis of talc granuloma, chemical abscess or tumour was made and exploratory thoracotomy revealed a tumour involving the chest wall, lung, and pleura which, on histological examination, showed adenocarcinoma of varying degrees of differentiation and in some parts also presenting a more squamoid appearance. Numerous doubly refractile talc particles were intimately associated with the tumour and fibrous tissue. Shortly after excision the patient developed evidence of systemic dissemination of the disease and died four months later. The possibility of this tumour being induced by the talc is discussed.

    A brief review is made of the various forms of talc used in surgery over the past 40 years and attention is drawn to the significance of the proportion of asbestos mineral which is present in talc as mined in various parts of the world.

    We do not consider that this is a case of mesothelioma of the pleura.

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