Leiomyosarcoma, a rare malignancy of smooth muscle, may arise from the retroperitoneum and present with the same vague symptoms as a malignancy of the pelvic organs. The purpose of this paper is to review eight cases of retroperitoneal leiomyosarcoma and to illustrate the presenting symptoms, prognostic indicators, and outcomes of patients seen at Indiana University Medical Center between 1989 and 1994. Patients in this study were white females who presented between the ages of 46 and 73 (mean age of 61.4) with nonspecific presenting symptoms of weight loss and back pain (37.5% for each). Tumor size (mean diameter of 14.6 cm in the range 4 to 35 cm), tumor extension, and the presence of distant metastases were of greater prognostic significance than tumor grade (7/8 were grade II, 1/8 was grade I). Surgical resection improved long-term prognosis; three of five patients undergoing resection are alive with no evidence of disease compared to zero of three treated nonsurgically. Due to location and vague presenting symptoms, this tumor continues to have a bleak prognosis and further evaluation and innovative treatment are required before a reasonable cure rate may be expected.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Obstetrics and Gynecology