Association of Short Duration From Initial Symptoms to Specialist Consultation With Poor Survival in Soft-Tissue Sarcomas

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The association of symptom duration with survival remains controversial in soft-tissue sarcoma (STS).

Materials and Methods:

We determined whether the length from initial symptoms to specialist consultation affects prognosis in STSs. We retrospectively reviewed 152 primary STS patients (with 142 non–small round cell sarcomas) who consulted our specialist hospital. The factors that affected the length of the period from the initial symptoms to specialist consultation and the length of the delay at the clinic before specialist hospital referral were investigated. The relation between the length of the period from symptom onset and overall survival was also analyzed.


Unplanned excision and superficial tumor were significantly associated with increasing duration from the initial symptoms to specialist hospital referral. Multivariate analysis revealed that tumors over 5 cm (P=0.002 and 0.005) and symptoms within 6 months (P=0.017 and 0.016) were independent poor prognostic factors of overall survival among the pretreatment factors when analyzing all and non–small round cell STSs.


This is a first report to show the independent prognostic role of symptom duration in STSs on multivariate analysis. Considering the impact of symptom duration on survival in these heterogenous tumors, careful follow-up and consideration of treatment are necessary for patients with short symptom duration.

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