Soft-tissue Sarcomas in the Asia-Pacific Region: A Systematic Review

  • Ngan, Roger (Department of Clinical Oncology, Queen Elizabeth Hospital) ;
  • Wang, Edward (Department of Orthopaedics, University of the Philippines, Philippine General Hospital) ;
  • Porter, David (Medical Oncology, Auckland Regional Cancer and Blood Service) ;
  • Desai, Jayesh (Department of Medical Oncology, Royal Melbourne Hospital) ;
  • Prayogo, Nugroho (Department of Medical Oncology, Dharmais Hospital National Cancer Center) ;
  • Devi, Beena (Department of Radiotherapy, Oncology and Palliative Care, Sarawak General Hospital) ;
  • Quek, Richard (Department of Medical Oncology, National Cancer Centre)
  • Published : 2013.11.30


Background: Soft-tissue sarcomas require tailored and multidisciplinary treatment and management. However, little is known about how sarcomas are treated and managed throughout the Asia-Pacific region. Materials and Methods: MEDLINE was systematically searched using prespecified criteria. Publications (previous 10 years) that reported tumour characteristics, treatment patterns, survival outcomes, and/or safety outcomes of patients with soft-tissue sarcoma were selected. Exclusion criteria were studies of patients <18 years of age; ${\leq}10$ patients; countries other than Australia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, or Thailand; >20% benign tumours; sarcomas located in bones or joints; gastrointestinal stromal tumour; Kaposi's sarcoma; or not reporting relevant outcomes. Results: Of the 1,822 publications retrieved, 35 (32 studies) were included. Nearly all patients (98%, 1,992/2,024; 31 studies) were treated with surgery, and more studies used adjuvant radiotherapy than chemotherapy (24 vs 17 studies). Survival outcomes and recurrence rates varied among the studies because of the different histotypes, sites, and disease stages assessed. Only 5 studies reported safety findings. Conclusions: These findings highlight the lack of specific data available about soft-tissue sarcomas in the Asia-Pacific region. Better efforts to understand how the sarcoma is managed and treated will help improve patient outcomes in the region.


Asia-Pacific;incidence;sarcoma;soft-tissue neoplasms;survival


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