Mathilde Aalling

Head and neck sarcomas: the first report addressing the duration of symptoms and diagnostic work up

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Background: Head and neck sarcomas are rare and difficult to diagnose and manage. Aim: To describe a population of patients with head and neck sarcomas focusing on the effect of symptom duration and time to diagnosis on mortality and recurrence risk. Materials and methods: Fifty-one patients treated in our department between 1998–2013 were retrospectively included. Patient and tumour characteristics as well as dates of interest were obtained from sarcoma registries, charts and pathology records. The effect of symptom duration and time to diagnosis on mortality and risk of recurrence was tested by multivariate analysis. Results: There was a wide range in symptom duration (1–144 months, median 5) and time for diagnosis (0–234 days, median 14) without significant effect on overall mortality, disease-specific mortality or risk of recurrence. Chondrosarcomas in the larynx dominated among the patients with the longest diagnostic duration. Conclusion and significance: The diagnostic process is challenging and in some cases of extremely long duration without effect on mortality. The symptom duration and time to diagnosis in relation to mortality and risk of recurrence has not previously been described. Early biopsy, better imaging and advanced pathological techniques can hopefully speed up the diagnostic process and reduce morbidity and mortality.

Original languageEnglish
JournalActa Oto-Laryngologica
Pages (from-to)521-525
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020

    Research areas

  • cancer, Head and neck, neoplasm, sarcoma, symptom duration, time to diagnosis, SURGERY, SOFT-TISSUE SARCOMAS, MANAGEMENT, PROGNOSTIC-FACTORS

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