Scapular chondrosarcomas have high rates of local recurrence and metastasis

Michaela M. Schneiderbauer, Charlene Blanchard, Rachel Gullerud, William S. Harmsen, Michael G. Rock, Thomas C. Shives, Franklin H. Sim, Sean P. Scully

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


This is the first report of a large series of patients with scapular chondrosarcomas. The grade distributions, locations of the tumors in the scapula, surgical techniques, status of margins, chondrosarcoma subtypes, Enneking stages, adjuvant therapies, local recurrence rates, metastasis rates, and survival prognoses of patients with scapular chondrosarcoma were evaluated. Forty-seven patients treated between 1921 and 1999 were analyzed retrospectively. Grade 3 disease was significantly associated with a poorer survival prognosis when compared with Grades 1 or 2 disease. Patients with tumors smaller than 5 cm were treated mainly with partial scapulectomy, and patients with tumors larger than 5 cm often were treated with total scapulectomy. The survival prognoses of patients with intralesional resections at initial surgery showed a tendency toward poorer survival when compared with patients with wide resections at initial surgery. Metastasis and local recurrence (21.3% and 40.4%) were higher in scapular chondrosarcomas than rates reported for patients with general chondrosarcomas, and local recurrence or metastasis was associated with limited survival. The 5- and 15-year survival probabilities subsequent to diagnosis were 79% and 53%, respectively. The high rates of local recurrence and metastasis likely were caused by the difficult anatomic relationships encountered during scapular resections. This study shows the importance of wide margins which must be achieved to provide local disease control.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)232-238
Number of pages7
JournalClinical orthopaedics and related research
StatePublished - Sep 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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