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Welcome to The Cancer Information Network
Introduction
   
Soft tissue sarcoma is a malignant disease occurs in muscle, fatty tissue, tendon, or other soft tissue.  This year, about 5,000 people will be diagnosed with this malignancy.  The diagnosis of sarcoma brings with them many questions and a need for clear, understandable answers...

In The Spotlight:

" I am diagnosed with sarcoma. Where can I obtain answers to my questions?" - Get answers of your questions of sarcoma from a board-certified oncologist. 

  Questions about cancer or its treatment? Get answers from a board-certified oncologist.   Please visit our Ask An Oncologist service.

Adult Soft Tissue Sarcoma: Treatment

Soft tissue sarcoma is a disease in which cancer (malignant) cells are found in the soft tissue of part of the body. The soft tissues of the body include the muscles, connective tissues (tendons), vessels that carry blood or lymph, joints, and fat.

A lump or swelling in part of the body may appear if a person has a soft tissue sarcoma. The lump may not be painful. If there are symptoms, a doctor may cut out a piece of tissue from the swollen area. This is called a biopsy. The tissue will be looked at under a microscope to see if there are any cancer cells. A patient may need to go to the hospital for this test.

The chance of recovery (prognosis) and choice of treatment depend on the size and stage of the cancer (how far the cancer has spread), and the patient's age and general health.

Table of Contents:

Stages of soft tissue sarcoma - Catching the diseases in their early stages is important for their treatment.  

Treatment of the diseases, an overview - If found early, soft tissue sarcomas are surgically curable. 

Treatment for soft tissue sarcoma by stage - Treatment Information about treatment for soft tissue sarcoma written for general public.

Stage Information:

Once adult soft tissue sarcoma is found, more tests will be done to find out if cancer cells have spread to other parts of the body. This testing is called staging. A doctor needs to know the stage of the disease to plan treatment. Unlike most other cancers, the size of a soft tissue sarcoma is not as important as how the cancer cells look under a microscope. The more different the cancer cells look from normal cells, the higher the stage. The following stages are used for adult soft tissue sarcoma:

Stage IA

The cancer cells look either very much like or somewhat different from normal cells (well-differentiated or moderately well-differentiated). The cancer is either near the surface or deep and is less than 5 centimeters in size (about 2 inches), but it has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body (lymph nodes are small bean-shaped structures that are found throughout the body; they produce and store infection-fighting cells).

Stage IB

The cancer cells look either very much like or somewhat different from normal cells (well-differentiated or moderately well-differentiated). The cancer is near the surface and more than 5 centimeters in size, but it has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.

Stage IIA

The cancer cells look either very much like or somewhat different from normal cells (well-differentiated or moderately well-differentiated). The cancer is deep and more than 5 centimeters in size, but it has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.

Stage IIB

The cancer cells look very different from normal cells (poorly differentiated or undifferentiated). The cancer is either near the surface or deep and is less than 5 centimeters in size, but it has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.

Stage IIC

The cancer cells look very different from normal cells (poorly differentiated or undifferentiated). The cancer is near the surface and is more than 5 centimeters in size, but it has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.

Stage III

The cancer cells look very different from normal cells (poorly differentiated or undifferentiated). The cancer is deep and is more than 5 centimeters in size, but it has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.

Stage IV

The cancer may have spread to lymph nodes in the area or may have spread to other parts of the body, such as the lungs, head, or neck.

Recurrent

Recurrent disease means that the cancer has come back (recurred) after it has been treated. It may come back in the tissues where it first started, or it may come back in another part of the body.

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Date Modified: 06/2002

 
 
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