Objective: To evaluate the early and long-term results after surgery for primary pulmonary sarcomas (PPS) and to compare them with those of patients with pulmonary carcinosarcomas (PCaSa).
Methods: During a 20-year period, 48 patients with PPS and 15 patients with PCaSa underwent surgery. There were 40 males and 23 females with a mean age of 52.1 years (range 13-78). The histologic diagnoses in PPS group were fibrosarcoma (15), fibroleiomyosarcoma (10), leiomyosarcoma (6), rhabdomyosarcoma (6), hemangiopericytoma (3), epitheloid hemangioendothelioma (3), malignant schwannoma (1), liposarcoma (1) and undifferentiated sarcoma (3). The following curative resections were carried out: lobectomy (36), including two sleeve lobectomies (in PPS group), pneumonectomy (15) and polysegmental resections (4). In four PPS cases, these procedures were extended to the thoracic wall, diaphragm or pericardium. An atypical resection was applied in one PPS patient (the tumor was falsely classified as benign on frozen section examination). Exploratory thoracotomy was performed in five of PPS patients (11%) and in two of those with PCaSa (13%). The majority of PPS patients were with low stages I and II (76%). The PCaSa patients were predominantly with stage IIIA (39%).
Results: No postoperative death was registered. Major complications included two localized empyemas (4.2%) in PPS and one reoperation for bronchial stump fistula (6.7%) in PCaSa groups. Local recurrences were operated on in one patient per group (2.1 and 6.7%, respectively). Follow-up was available on 57 patients and ranged from 4 to 148 months. The overall cumulative 5-year survival was 48.81% for PPS and 49.38% for PCaSa patients (P=0.9035). It was better in low vs. higher stage cases, statistically significant in PPS group (P=0.0005) and without significant difference in PCaSa cohort (P=0.11).
Conclusions: Complete resection of PPS and PCaSa favors an acceptable survival, especially in low stages. There is no significant difference in the survival rates between PPS and PCaSa patients, despite the greater number of cases with higher stages in PCaSa group.