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Volume 6 (2002), Issue 2, Pages 69-73

The Treatment and Outcome of Patients With Soft Tissue Sarcomas and Synchronous Metastases

Division of Surgical Oncology, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Elm & Carlton Streets, Buffalo 14263, NY, USA

Copyright © 2002 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Introduction: There is a strong association between poor overall survival and a short disease-free interval for patients with soft tissue sarcomas (STS) and metastatic disease. Patients with STS and synchronous metastases should have a very dismal prognosis.The role of surgery in this subgroup of patients with STS has not been defined.

Patients and Methods: A single-institution retrospective review was performed of 48 patients with STS and synchronous metastases in regard to patient demographics, presentation, tumor characteristics, metastatic sites, treatment, follow-up, and survival over a 27-year period.

Results: Most primary tumors were 10 cm (58%), high-grade histology (77%), and located on the extremity (60%).The most frequent site of metastatic disease was the lung (63%); 27% of patients had metastases to 2 organ sites. Surgery to the primary tumor was performed in 94% of patients (n = 45) and 68% had additional radiation therapy (n = 32). Thirty- five percent of patients underwent at least one metastastectomy (n = 17). Chemotherapy was administered to 90% of patients (n = 43); 31% received 3 different regimens (n = 15) and 25% were given intra-arterial or intracavitary therapy (n = 12). Median overall survival was 15 months with a 21% 2-year survival. Local control of the primary tumor was achieved in 54% (n = 26), and metastastectomy was performed in 35% (n = 17). No analyzed factors were associated with an improvement in overall survival

Conclusions: Despite multiple poor prognostic factors, the survival of patients with STS and metastases is comparable to those who develop delayed metastatic disease. However, unlike patients who present with metachronous disease, there was no improved survival observed for patients treated with metastastectomy. Consequently, treatment for patients with STS and synchronous metastases should be approached with caution. Surgical management of STS with synchronous metastases must be considered palliative and should be reserved for patients requiring palliation of symptoms. Patients must also be well informed of the noncurative nature of the procedure.