At the Duke Cancer Institute, we offer a multidisciplinary approach to treating bone and soft tissue sarcomas while preserving function.
Sarcomas occur in the connective tissues of the body (cartilage, fat, bones, blood vessels, muscle, nerves, deep skin tissues). Sarcomas are quite rare, with only 10,000 cases per year occurring in the United States.
There are more than 50 types of sarcoma, and tumors can occur in any part of the body, although half of them develop in the arms and legs.
Among the more common types of soft tissue sarcomas treated at the Duke Cancer Institute are angiosarcoma, chordoma, fibrosarcoma, GIST, leiomyosarcoma, liposarcoma, malignant fibrous histiocytoma (also called undifferentiated pleomorphic sarcoma), malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor, rhabdomyosarcoma, and synovial sarcoma.
Common bone cancers treated include Ewing sarcoma, chondrosarcoma, and osteosarcoma.
The Duke Cancer Institute is leading the way in research on this rare cancer. Many patients take part in clinical trials testing the latest developments in treatment therapies.
Our team of specialists use the latest technology to accurately diagnose the disease using advanced imaging techniques, biopsies, and pathologic techniques, including molecular diagnostic testing. This information allows the team to create a personalized treatment plan for each patient.
Treatment plans depend on the specific diagnosis (type of sarcoma), grade of the sarcoma (how aggressive it appears under the microscope), location of the tumor, and the stage, which is determined by the size of the tumor and whether it has spread to other sites.
These factors, along with the age and general health of the patient also influence the prognosis (expected outcome). Treatment may include the following:
The integrated team of sarcoma specialists at the Duke Multidisciplinary Sarcoma Center has extensive experience in the treatment of these rare but serious diseases. Multidisciplinary sarcoma clinics are held on Thursdays and patients can see all of the physicians on the multidisciplinary team on the same day.
Our team works to devise the best treatment plan for each individual patient, using both standard procedures and the latest innovative techniques, many developed at the Duke Cancer Institute.
After patients receive a personalized treatment plan from the multidisciplinary sarcoma team at the Duke Cancer Institute, treatment can take place at Duke or when appropriate at another location, such as Durham Regional Hospital and Duke Raleigh Hospital.
Our specialists in adult medical oncology, pediatric oncology, orthopaedic oncology, radiation oncology, diagnostic radiology, surgical pathology, surgical oncology, and reconstructive surgery work together to ensure that sarcoma patients receive the therapy best targeted to their particular disease.
The Pediatric Musculoskeletal Oncology Program brings together doctors, nurses, and other specialists from five different departments to diagnose and treat cancers of the bone and muscles in children, adolescents, and young adults (up to age 35).
The program specializes in the treatment of rhabdomyosarcoma, osteosarcoma, Ewing sarcoma, and other sarcomas.
To make an appointment or refer a patient to the multidisciplinary sarcoma team at the Duke Cancer Institute, call 919-613-5550 or 877-SARC DUKE (877-727-2385).