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About Thymoma/Thymic Malignancies

  • Thymoma and thymic malignancies are diseases in which cancer cells form on the outside surfaces of the thymus. The thymus gland is a small organ that lies in the upper chest under the breastbone. It makes white blood cells, called lymphocytes, that protect the body against infections.

    The tumor cells in a thymoma look like the normal cells of the thymus, grow slowly, and rarely spread beyond the thymus.

    The tumor cells in a thymic carcinoma look very different from the normal cells of the thymus. They grow more quickly and have usually spread to other parts of the body when the cancer is found. Thymic carcinoma is harder to treat than thymoma.

    Learn more about thymoma and thymic malignancies and find information on how we support and care for people with thymoma before, during, and after treatment.

    The following information is from the National Cancer Institute.

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