Diagnosed with stage 4 thymic carcinoma but no metastasis show on scans?

My dad had an MRI in October for pre-op testing where a mass in his mediastinum (behind the right lung) was incidentally found. The biopsy of this mass showed malignancy; a poorly differentiated mass with hepatoid features.

His official diagnoses is stage 4 thymic carcinoma. It is a large mass, it measured 12cm x 9cm x 6cm two months ago. However, the oncologist said the PET scan showed no metastasis.

Can someone please explain to me how it is stage 4 if no metastasis were found?

2 Answers

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  • Tiny
    Lv 7
    5 years ago
    Best Answer

    The following stages are used for thymoma:

    (Stage I) cancer is found only within the thymus. All cancer cells are inside the capsule (sac) that surrounds the thymus.

    (Stage II) cancer has spread through the capsule and into the fat around the thymus or into the lining of the chest cavity.

    (Stage III) cancer has spread to nearby organs in the chest, including the lung, the sac around the heart, or large blood vessels that carry blood to the heart.

    (Stage IV) is divided into stage IVA and stage IVB, depending on where the cancer has spread.

    In (stage IVA), cancer has spread widely around the lungs and heart.

    In (stage IVB), cancer has spread to the blood or lymph system.

    Thymic carcinomas have usually spread to other parts of the body when diagnosed.

    The above info was taken from:

  • april
    Lv 7
    5 years ago

    Stage IVA: The thymoma has spread widely throughout the pleura (lining of the lungs and chest wall) and/or pericardium.

    Stage IVB: The thymoma has spread to distant organs. The most common sites of spread are bone, the liver, and the lungs.

    No mets, no stage 4...

    http://www.cancer.org/cancer/thymuscancer/detailed...

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