Background: Several reports have shown a prolonged survival after surgical treatment of pulmonary metastases from soft tissue sarcomas. However, it is still unclear which prognostic factors predict a favorable outcome. Series are not comparable and the data are conflicting. Therefore, a multi-institutional study was undertaken to analyze prognostic factors in selecting patients for resection of pulmonary metastases from soft tissue sarcomas.
Methods: This report is a retrospective study of the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer-Soft Tissue and Bone Sarcoma Group. Two hundred fifty-five patients underwent complete resection of lung metastases from soft tissue sarcomas. Cases with chondrosarcoma and small round cell sarcomas like Ewing sarcoma were excluded.
Results: The 3 year and 5 year overall postmetastasectomy survival rates were 54% and 38%, respectively. The disease free postmetastasectomy survival rates were 42% and 35%, respectively. Analysis of prognostic factors for a more favorable outcome revealed disease free intervals of 2.5 years or more, following a resection with microscopically free margins, age less than 40 years, and Grade I and II tumors. These prognostic factors have an independent influence on overall survival, using a multivariate Cox regression model.
Conclusions: Surgical excision of lung metastases from soft tissue sarcomas is well accepted and should be considered as a first line of treatment if preoperative evaluation indicates that complete clearance of the metastases is possible. Further investigation is needed before chemotherapy can be recommended as additional therapy.