Suivi des sarcomes

Sarcomas: follow-up after treatment

Emmanuelle Manck
04/05/2017
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After treatment for a sarcoma, patients must be monitored for several years to check that there is no relapse or metastasis.

Sarcomas: frequent follow-up

Follow-up consultations are frequent to begin with (every three to four months) then decrease to once every six months and then once per year. The exact terms of the follow-up depend on the age of the patient and his/her state of health, the tumor type and the treatment given.

 

Follow-up examinations after sarcoma

Each follow-up consultation mainly involves a clinical exam and imaging exams:

  • X-rays, scans and/or MRIs of the area of the body on which surgery was performed
  • Lung X-rays or scans
  • Bone scintigraphy for a bone tumor, if it is suspected that the skeleton is affected

 

Sarcomas: risk of relapse

The quality of the surgery performed is a major factor in the risk of local relapse, though the severity and size of the tumor are also significant: the greater they are, the higher the risk of relapse.

To summarize, it is essential to seek a consultation quickly if you have an unexplained mass, to contact an expert sarcoma center as soon as care begins, to strictly comply with follow-up requirements, and finally to consult your physician promptly if any further anomaly occurs.

The current rate of local recurrence of soft-tissue sarcomas in limbs is less than 10%, compared with 25% barely 10 years ago thanks to progress in the management of sarcomas. For sarcomas in the retroperitoneum (the abdomen), recurrence has fallen to less than 20% compared with over 50% a few years ago.