Alveolar soft tissue sarcoma: a report of 50 cases at a single institution

Acta Chir Belg. 2023 Aug;123(4):375-383. doi: 10.1080/00015458.2022.2049060. Epub 2022 Mar 12.


Background: Alveolar soft-part sarcoma (ASPS) is a rare soft tissue sarcoma subtype, occurring mainly in young people, with poor prognosis.

Materials and methods: We conducted a retrospective analysis of localized or metastatic ASPS patients admitted to the First Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou University (China) from 2012 to 2020, focusing on treatment and prognosis.

Results: The median age at diagnosis was 24 years (range: 1.4-78 years). Women (n = 29, 58%), especially those aged <30 years, dominated this series. The most common metastasis site was lung. Thirty-one (62%) patients developed lung metastasis (localized: n = 9 [18%]; metastatic: n = 22 [44%]). Only a tumor maximum diameter ≥ 5 cm was associated with a high lung metastasis rate (p = 0.039). The mean follow-up time was 37.5 months (1-108 months), and the 5-year overall survival (OS) rate was 84.7%. Univariate analysis indicated that distant metastasis observed at the initial visit and incomplete resection of the primary tumor were associated with poor OS. For localized cases, neither surgery plus radiotherapy (p = 0.486) nor surgery plus chemotherapy (p = 0.536) improved progression-free survival compared to surgery alone. Among the metastatic cases, the disease control rate (PR + SD) was higher for targeted therapy (60%) and combined immunosuppressive therapy (100%) than for conventional cytotoxic chemotherapy (26%).

Conclusions: Postoperative adjuvant radiotherapy and chemotherapy do not provide good local control for patients with localized disease. Although there is no standard treatment strategy for patients with advanced or metastatic disease, they can benefit from targeted therapy and/or immunosuppressive therapy.

Keywords: Alveolar soft tissue sarcoma; clinical characteristics; prognostic factors; treatment methods.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Lung Neoplasms* / therapy
  • Middle Aged
  • Prognosis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sarcoma, Alveolar Soft Part* / diagnosis
  • Sarcoma, Alveolar Soft Part* / surgery
  • Soft Tissue Neoplasms* / diagnosis
  • Soft Tissue Neoplasms* / surgery
  • Young Adult