Surgical treatment of primary pulmonary sarcomas

Eur J Cardiothorac Surg. 1999 Apr;15(4):456-60. doi: 10.1016/s1010-7940(99)00045-7.


Objective: We sought to identify the long-term prognosis after surgical treatment for primary pulmonary sarcoma.

Methods: Twenty-three patients were retrospectively identified as having been treated surgically for primary pulmonary sarcoma between 1981 and 1996. The records of all patients were reviewed, and the histopathology reexamined by a pathologist.

Results: Fifteen patients were male and eight female; their ages ranged from 20 to 78 (mean 51) years. Tumors measured between 0.9 and 12.0 (mean 5.2) cm across the greatest diameter. The histologic diagnoses were malignant fibrous histiocytoma (8, three grade 1 or 2, two grade 3), synovial sarcoma (4), malignant schwannoma (3), leiomyosarcoma (3), and one case each of angiosarcoma, intimal sarcoma, epitheloid hemangioendothelioma, fibrosarcoma and primitive neuroectodermal tumor. Three patients were found to be unresectable. All three underwent radiation and chemotherapy. Lobectomies or bilobectomies were performed in 13 patients including two sleeve resections, one carinal resection, and one chest wall resection. Four patients underwent radical pneumonectomies. Three patients with invasion of the pulmonary artery, pulmonary veins or atrial wall underwent extended resections with the use of cardiopulmonary bypass. In two, a homograft was used to reconstruct the right ventricular outflow tract. Of the resected patients, six had a positive resection margin, and four had at least one positive lymph node in the specimen. Three patients underwent repeat pulmonary resections for recurrences. Eleven patients received postoperative chemotherapy and eight had radiation therapy. Follow-up was available on 22 patients, and ranged from 2 to 183 (mean 48) months; 14 patients are disease free, six died of disease, one died of surgical complications (operative mortality 5%), and two are alive with disease. Actuarial 3- and 5-year survival of the resected patients was 69%. Size and grade were not found to be correlated with significantly increased survival, but completeness of resection was (P<0.05).

Conclusions: Resection of primary pulmonary sarcomas can produce an acceptable survival rate if the resection is complete. Cardiopulmonary bypass can be a useful adjunct when tumors involve a resectable area of the heart or great vessels.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / mortality
  • Lung Neoplasms / pathology
  • Lung Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Lymphatic Metastasis
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prognosis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sarcoma / mortality
  • Sarcoma / pathology
  • Sarcoma / surgery*
  • Treatment Outcome