Retroperitoneal soft tissue sarcoma: An analysis of radiation and surgical treatment

Matthew T. Ballo, Gunar K. Zagars, Raphael E. Pollock, Robert S. Benjamin, Barry W. Feig, Janice N. Cormier, Kelly K. Hunt, Shreyaskumar R. Patel, Jonathan C. Trent, Sam Beddar, Peter W.T. Pisters

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122 Scopus citations


Purpose: To evaluate the clinical outcomes of patients with localized retroperitoneal soft tissue sarcoma (STS) treated with complete surgical resection and radiation. Methods and Materials: The medical records of 83 patients were reviewed retrospectively. Sixty patients presented with primary disease and the remaining 23 had recurrence after previous surgical resection. Results: With a median follow-up of 47 months, the actuarial overall disease-specific survival (DSS), distant metastasis-free survival, and local control (LC) rates were 44%, 67%, and 40%, respectively. Of the 38 patients dying of disease, local disease progression was the sole site of recurrence for 16 patients and was a component of progression for another 11 patients. Multivariate analysis indicated that histologic grade was associated with the 5-year rates of DSS (low-grade, 92%; intermediate-grade, 51%; and high-grade, 41%, p = 0.006). Multivariate analysis also indicated an inferior 5-year LC rate for patients presenting with recurrent disease, positive or uncertain resection margins, and age greater than 65 years. The data did not suggest an improved local control with higher doses of external-beam radiation (EBRT) or with the specific use of intraoperative radiotherapy (IORT). Radiation-related complications (10% at 5 years) developed in 5 patients; all had received their EBRT postoperatively. Conclusions: Although preoperative radiation therapy and aggressive surgical resection is well tolerated in patients, local disease progression continues to be a significant component of disease death. In this small cohort of patients, the use of higher doses of EBRT or IORT did not result in clinically apparent improvements in outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)158-163
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Radiation therapy
  • Retroperitoneum
  • Soft tissue sarcoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Radiation


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