Your treatment, and your prognosis, depend on the stage of your tumor, whether it is encapsulated or has spread outside of the capsule. The stage of the tumor, and whether or not it is operable, are the two most important factors for its prognosis. Generally, the lower the stage, the better the prognosis.

There are two staging systems used for thymic cancer. One is the Masaoka system, used just for Thymic cancer, illustrated below:

Stage I. No invasion, encapsulated
Stage IIA: Microscopic, minimal, invasion
Stage IIB Macroscopic, grossly, invasion
Stage III: Macroscopic invasion of neighboring tissue or organs, 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 IVA: Pleural or pericardial invasion cancer has spread widely around the lungs or heart.
Stage IVB: Invasion to the lymph system and distant organs or locations.cancer has spread to the blood or lymph system.

The other staging system is call TNM. We will look at this on the next page.