Results of treating primary pulmonary sarcomas and pulmonary carcinosarcomas

Lary A Robinson, Nalan Akgul Babacan, Tawee Tanvetyanon, Evita Henderson-Jackson, Marilyn M Bui, Mihaela Druta
Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery 2020 June 17

OBJECTIVE: Primary pulmonary sarcomas (PPS) and pulmonary carcinosarcomas (PCS) are rare aggressive lung malignancies. We reviewed our 21-year experience with the surgical and nonsurgical treatment of both tumors, comparing their clinical, histopathologic, and treatment results.

METHODS: All patients with PPS or PCS who underwent surgical and nonsurgical treatment between 1998 and 2019 at our cancer center were retrospectively reviewed. Multivariable Cox proportional hazards model was constructed.

RESULTS: In total, 100 patients were analyzed: 45 with PPS and 55 with PCS. Among patients with PPS, 31 of 45 (69%) underwent surgery with 1 (3%) operative mortality. For patients with PCS, 29 of 55 (53%) underwent surgery with no operative mortality. Patients with PPS were younger than PCS (P < .01). Fewer patients were smokers among PPS (58%) versus PCS (93%) (P < .01). For resected PPS, mean tumor size was 8.2 ± 4.1 cm (range 2.2-18.0) compared with 10.1 ± 5.0 cm (range 3.9-17.0) for unresected PPS. Tumor size for resected PCS was 6.2 ± 2.6 cm (range 2.0-10.5) versus 6.8 ± 3.5 cm (range 1.2-13.5) for unresected PCS. Of resected patients, 5 of 31 (16%) with PPS and 9 of 29 (31%) with PCS were node positive. Overall survival estimates were as follows: for PPS, median survival and 5-year overall survival for resected versus unresected cases were 39.6 months/28.7% versus 4.9 months/7.8%. For PCS, survival estimates were 23.6 months/31.0% versus 14.9 months/28.2%, respectively. In multivariable analyses (N = 100), age, smoking history, histology, and surgery were risk factors of survival.

CONCLUSIONS: At initial evaluation, PPS and PCS presented with large-sized tumors and usually were not stage I. Surgery had a positive impact on survival among patients with PPS. Whenever feasible, surgical resection, even in locally advanced disease, may yield long-term survival in these aggressive lung tumors, although the level of evidence is low.

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