What is the role of medical therapy in the treatment of mesenchymal tumors in the mediastinum?

Updated: Feb 16, 2021
  • Author: Mary C Mancini, MD, PhD, MMM; Chief Editor: John Geibel, MD, MSc, DSc, AGAF  more...
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Answer

In most cases, surgical resection, if possible, is the treatment of choice. Radiation therapy has been used postoperatively with some benefit in cases of malignant fibrous histiocytoma. It has also been used in rhabdomyosarcoma, with uncertain results.

Chemotherapy has been used in some cases of liposarcoma preoperatively to downsize a previously inoperable tumor. It has also been attempted in angiosarcoma, with uncertain benefit. Chemotherapy, with or without radiotherapy, is the recommended treatment for cases of localized mediastinal rhabdomyosarcoma and is shown to improve the disease-free survival rate. In the remaining mesenchymal tumors of the mediastinum, chemotherapeutic treatment either has proved ineffective or has not been studied.


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