What are the AJCC GTNM stages of soft-tissue tumors?

Updated: Dec 03, 2018
  • Author: Vinod B Shidham, MD, FRCPath; Chief Editor: Omohodion (Odion) Binitie, MD  more...
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Answer

The G, T, N, and M values are combined to derive the stage grouping (see Table 2 below).

Table 2. AJCC GTNM Classification and Stage Grouping of Soft Tissue Sarcomas (Open Table in a new window)

Stage Groupings

Tumor Grade

Primary Tumor

Regional Lymph Node Involvement

Distant Metastasis

Stage IA

GX, G1

T1

N0

M0

Stage IB

GX, G1

T2

N0

M0

Stage IIA

G2, G3

T1

N0

M0

Stage IIB

G2

T2

N0

M0

Stage III

G3

Any G

T2

Any T

N0

N1

M0

M0

Stage IV

Any G Any T Any N M1

The GTNM system, which is clinically very useful, stratifies patients into groups with distinct prognostic patterns.

The size of the tumor also is of prognostic significance. The risk of metastasis and death is higher with larger primary sarcomas. According to the current American Joint Commission on Cancer (AJCC) system, tumors with a greatest dimension of 5 cm or less are designated as T1, and those exceeding 5 cm are categorized as T2. Although they are not a part of the AJCC system, tumors larger than 10 cm have a worse prognosis than do those larger than 5 cm. [35]

The site of the tumor is another important prognostic factor. Superficially located tumors (those situated entirely superficial to the deep or muscular fascia) have a relatively better prognosis than that characterizing deeper sarcomas. Alternative staging systems incorporate site into their classification strategy.


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