Synovial sarcoma: A retrospective analysis of 271 patients of all ages treated at a single institution

Authors


Abstract

BACKGROUND

The optimal treatment strategy for synovial sarcoma (SS) is subject to debate, and different strategies have been used for pediatric and adult patients. The current retrospective analysis examined a large group of patients of all ages who were treated at a single institution over a 30-year period.

METHODS

The study included 271 patients who ranged in age from 5 years to 87 years; 255 had localized disease, which was macroscopically resected in 215 cases and deemed unresectable at diagnosis in 40 cases. Chemotherapy was administered to 41% of patients, corresponding to 76% of patients age ≤ 16 years and < 20% of older patients; 28% of patients with macroscopically resected disease received chemotherapy on an adjuvant basis.

RESULTS

The 5-year event-free survival rate for the study cohort as a whole was 37%, although this rate varied with age (66%, 40%, and 31% for patients age ≤ 16 years, 17–30 years, and > 30 years, respectively). Chemotherapy was used more commonly for children than for adults. Among patients with surgically resected disease, the 5-year metastasis-free survival (MFS) rate was 60% for those who were treated with chemotherapy and 48% for those who were not; the benefit associated with chemotherapy use appeared to be greatest for patients age ≥ 17 years who had tumors measuring > 5 cm (MFS, 47% [chemotherapy] vs. 27% [no chemotherapy]). In the subgroup of patients with measurable disease, the rate of tumor response to chemotherapy was approximately 48%.

CONCLUSIONS

Although the authors await more convincing proof of the efficacy of adjuvant chemotherapy in the treatment of adult soft tissue sarcoma, they recommend that patients with high-risk SS (tumor size > 5 cm) be the first to be considered for this type of treatment. Cancer 2004. © 2004 American Cancer Society.

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