Medline: 2723995

Journal of Pediatric Surgery 24(1): 5-10, 1989.

Primary reexcision for patients with 'microscopic residual' tumor following initial excision of sarcomas of trunk and extremity sites.

Hays DM, Lawrence W, Wharam M, et al.


Among 404 patients with primary tumors of extremity-trunk sites entered in the Intergroup Rhabdomyosarcoma Study (IRS) (1972 to 1984), 154 were placed in clinical group IIa, ie, with negative nodes but with "microscopic residual" (MR) disease, following the initial excisional (not biopsy) procedure. An elective reexcision of the area of the primary tumor (PRE) was performed in 41 of these patients within 35 days (mean interval, 14 days; SE, 0.9) with no intervening therapy. These procedures consisted of wider excision of the tumor "bed," resulting in a technical transfer of these patients from group IIa to group I, ie, complete excision. This reduced intensity of nonsurgical therapy (irradiation and chemotherapy). Among the 41 patients who underwent PRE, the 3-year survival estimate (Kaplan-Meier) was 91% (SE, 4%). This may be compared with the results in 113 patients who remained in group IIa, in which the 3-year survival estimate was 74% (SE, 4%). A second group for comparison consisted of the 73 patients with trunk/extremity tumors who were placed in group I after a single excisional procedure, ie, no PRE, in whom the 3-year survival estimate was 74% (SE, 5%). Recognized prognostic factors influencing survival in these groups were comparable, with the exception of tumor size, ie, the largest tumors (greater than or equal to 10 cm in diameter) were concentrated in groups I and IIa. When patients with tumors greater than or equal to 10 cm in diameter (9.7% of the total) were removed from all three study groups, patients undergoing PRE had longer survival duration estimates than patients in the control groups.

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