Pathophysiology: A soft-tissue sarcoma is a form of sarcoma that develops in connective tissue, though the term is sometimes applied to elements of the soft tissue that are not currently considered connective tissue.
Treatment: The stage of the sarcoma is based on the size and grade of the tumor, and whether the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes or other parts of the body (metastasized). Treatment options for soft-tissue sarcomas include surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. Surgery is the most common treatment for soft-tissue sarcomas. It is important to obtain a margin free of tumor to decrease the likelihood of local recurrence and give the best chance for eradication of the tumor.
Statistics: MEDLINE was systematically searched using prespecified criteria. Publications (previous 10 years) that reported tumour characteristics, treatment patterns, survival outcomes, and/or safety outcomes of patients with soft-tissue sarcoma were selected. Exclusion criteria were studies of patients <18 years of age; ≤ 10 patients; countries other than Australia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, or Thailand; >20% benign tumours; sarcomas located in bones or joints; gastrointestinal stromal tumour; Kaposi's sarcoma; or not reporting relevant outcomes. Of the 1,822 publications retrieved, 35 (32 studies) were included. Nearly all patients (98%, 1,992/2,024; 31 studies) were treated with surgery, and more studies used adjuvant radiotherapy than chemotherapy (24 vs 17 studies). Survival outcomes and recurrence rates varied among the studies because of the different histotypes, sites, and disease stages assessed. Only 5 studies reported safety findings.