Clinical course of nonvisceral soft tissue leiomyosarcoma in 225 patients from the Scandinavian Sarcoma Group

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BACKGROUND. Leiomyosarcoma of nonvisceral soft tissues is an uncommon malignant tumor; thus, only small numbers of cases have been reported. This study was based on a large series of patients from the Scandinavian Sarcoma Group Register acquired during a 15-year period (from 1986 to 2001). Follow-up information was available for all patients. METHODS. The authors analyzed the clinical features of 225 patients with cutaneous, subcutaneous, or deep-seated leiomyosarcoma of the extremities, trunk wall, and superficial parts of the head and neck region to determine the natural course of the disease. Only patients who received their treatment at a specialist sarcoma center were included. Re-evaluation of histopathology was performed. RESULTS. The age of the patients (121 women and 104 men) ranged from 20 years to 98 years (median, 70 years), and the tumors ranged in size from 0.6 cm to 35 cm (median, 4.0 cm). Eighty-two percent of the tumors were classified as high grade. The median follow-up for survivors was 5.5 years. The local treatment was adequate in 154 of 206 patients (75%) who were without metastasis at presentation. At 10 years, 84% of the 206 patients with localized disease at presentation were free from local recurrence, 66% remained metastasis free, and 49% were alive. Multivariate analysis showed that higher malignancy grade (P =.006), larger tumor size (P =.003), and deeper tumor location (P =.002) were correlated significantly with decreased metastasis-free survival, inadequate local treatment was correlated with local recurrence (P =.007), and high malignancy grade was correlated with decreased overall survival (P =.007). CONCLUSIONS. The long-term prognosis for patients with subcutaneous and deep-seated soft tissue leiomyosarcoma remains poor despite the ability to achieve adequate local control through nonmutilating surgery with or without radiotherapy.


  • Catarina Svarvar
  • Tom Bohling
  • Orjan Berlin
  • Pelle Gustafson
  • Gunnar Folleras
  • Bodil Bjerkehagen
  • Henryk Domanski
  • Kirsten Sundby Hall
  • Erkki Tukiainen
  • Carl Blomqvist
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Cancer and Oncology


  • prognosis, leiomyosarcoma, metastasis, soft tissue sacrorna
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)282-291
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2007
Publication categoryResearch

Bibliographic note

The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015. The record was previously connected to the following departments: Department of Orthopaedics (Lund) (013028000), Pathology, (Lund) (013030000)