What is included in long-term monitoring of patients with dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans (DFSP)?

Updated: Mar 06, 2020
  • Author: Raman K Madan, MD; Chief Editor: William D James, MD  more...
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Answer

Because of the high local recurrence rate of dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans (DFSP), patients require close follow-up care after treatment. Most recurrences occur within 3 years of the primary excision. Patients should be seen every 6 months during this period and annually thereafter. [14]

A literature review of DFSP case series treated with Mohs surgery shows that 50% of recurrences appear within the first 3 years after operation and 25% of local recurrences are detected after 5 years. A large case review from a series of 159 patients treated at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (New York) showed the medium time to the development of a local recurrence was 32 months. The indolent nature of DFSP requires lifelong surveillance for recurrence. [18]

In each follow-up visit, a complete history and a review of systems, as well as complete physical examinations, including skin examination and palpation of the excision site and regional lymph nodes, should be performed. An extensive workup is not warranted unless metastatic disease is suspected.


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