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Keywords:

  • clear cell sarcoma;
  • malignant melanoma of soft part;
  • pediatric tumors;
  • soft tissue sarcomas

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Clear cell sarcoma (CCS) of tendons and aponeuroses is extremely rare in childhood and little information is available on its clinical management. Originally believed to be a type of melanoma of soft tissue origin, CCS is now considered a distinct clinicopathologic entity that behaves like a high-grade soft tissue sarcoma. We report on a series of 28 pediatric patients treated from 1980 to 2000 by the Soft Tissue Sarcoma Italian Cooperative Group and the German Cooperative Group.

METHODS

Patients were treated with a multimodality therapeutic approach. Surgical resection was complete in 17 patients (mutilating in 3), radiotherapy was administered to 8 patients, and 20 patients received chemotherapy.

RESULTS

After a median follow-up of 102 months (range, 19–238 months), the 5-year and event-free survival rates were 66.4% and 63.3%, respectively. Seventeen patients were alive in first remission, two were alive in second remission, and nine had died of disease. The response to chemotherapy in the 7 evaluable patients included one partial remission, one minor response, and five no responses. Radiotherapy contributed to achieving local control in four of six Intergroup Rhabdomyosarcoma Study (IRS) Group II patients. Statistically significant differences in outcome were evident according to IRS group, tumor size, and site.

CONCLUSIONS

Our study confirms the aggressive behavior of CCS. Complete surgical resection represents the mainstay of treatment, and even the only treatment for patients with small tumors. Radiotherapy may control microscopic residual disease after surgery. Chemotherapy is ineffective and the prognosis is unfavorable for patients with unresectable and large tumors. Cancer 2002;94:3269–76. © 2002 American Cancer Society.

DOI 10.1002/cncr.10597