Soft Tissue Sarcoma
What is soft tissue sarcoma?
Soft tissue sarcoma is a type of rare cancer that manifests in the soft tissues of the body. These surrounding tissues provide connectivity and support to other body structures. While rare, there are many different types of soft tissue sarcoma, and they vary in age of onset and area of the body affected.
What causes soft tissue sarcoma?
In most cases, it is not clear what exactly causes soft tissue sarcoma, but in general, cancer occurs when cells develop mutations in their DNA. Thus, the type of soft tissue sarcoma is dependent on the particular genetic mutation of the cell. In addition, there are some factors that may increase someone’s risk of sarcoma, such as inherited syndromes and chemical or radiation exposure.
What are the symptoms of soft tissue sarcoma?
In the early stages, soft tissue sarcoma may not produce any signs nor symptoms. However, once the tumor begins to grow, it may cause a noticeable lump or swollen area and potentially pain if the tumor presses on nerves or muscles.
If the tumor is located in the abdomen, it may cause cramping and pains that could be mistaken for menstrual cramps, indigestion, or constipation.
How is soft tissue sarcoma diagnosed?
After a clinical examination, a doctor may conduct the following tests to confirm a soft tissue sarcoma diagnosis:
- Imaging tests, such as X-rays, CT scans, o rMRI scans
- Biopsy of the suspected area
What are the available treatments for soft tissue sarcoma?
The treatment options for soft tissue sarcoma are dependent on the size, type, and location of the particular tumor. They may be used in combination or as monotherapies, depending on the specific case. These options include:
- Surgery to remove the tumor
- Radiation therapy
- Chemotherapy drugs
- Targeted drug therapy treatment