Mesothelioma is an aggressive malignant cancer caused by exposure to asbestos. The disease affects linings of the lungs and wall of the chest due to inhalation of the asbestos fibers. In other cases, the surroundings of the heart and abdomen linings are also affected.
A thin membrane surrounding our lungs inside the chest wall is known as the pleura. When asbestos fibers are inhaled, it most affects this membrane. Hence the disease is known as malignant pleural mesothelioma.