Malignant sarcomatoid tumor of the pleura - 1242620

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Malignant sarcomatoid tumor of the pleura - 1242620

My 75-year-old father was recently diagnosed with a localized malignant sarcomatoid, stage III, high grade in the pleura with chest wall attachment. He had surgical resection of the tumor; however, they could not resect all of it. He begins radiation treatments next week, 7 weeks, 5 days per week. We have been told this is a very rare cancer.

What is the prognosis this type of cancer or overall life expectancy? Are there other treatment options out there if radiation does not work.

Dr West
Reply To: Malignant sarcomatoid tumor of the pleura

The prognosis of sarcomatoid carcinoma tends to be relatively unfavorable compared with other subtypes, in parts because the limited evidence suggests that it is not very likely to be responsive to the chemotherapy that can be more effective for other subtypes.

I'm afraid that we couldn't speculate on life expectancy, since there just aren't good data to address this, particularly if it is localized and can potentially be cured with surgery and subsequent radiation.

Chemo can certainly be pursued. Just because the probability of success is on the lower side doesn't mean that it isn't reasonable to consider. I must say that I have very little direct experience with sarcomatoid carcinoma, as it is quite a rare cancer, so I can't speak from the standpoint of much personal experience.

Good luck.

-Dr. West

Dr. Howard (Jack) West
Associate Clinical Professor
Medical Oncology
City of Hope Cancer Center
Duarte, CA

Founder & President
Global Resource for Advancing
Cancer Education