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Uterine leiomyosarcoma: A review of the literature and update on management options

  • Maureen E. Roberts
    Correspondence
    Corresponding author.
    Affiliations
    Division of Gynecologic Oncology, Department of Surgical Oncology, Fox Chase Cancer Center/Temple University Hospital, 333 Cottman Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19111, United States of America
    Search for articles by this author
  • Jason T. Aynardi
    Affiliations
    Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, 3400 Spruce St, 6 Founders, Philadelphia, PA 19104, United States of America
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  • Christina S. Chu
    Affiliations
    Division of Gynecologic Oncology, Department of Surgical Oncology, Fox Chase Cancer Center/Temple University Hospital, 333 Cottman Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19111, United States of America
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Published:September 20, 2018DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ygyno.2018.09.010

      Highlights

      • Uterine morcellation should be discouraged due to the risk of intraperitoneal dissemination of malignant tissue.
      • Adjuvant therapy for uterine-confined disease remains controversial as no improvement in survival has been demonstrated.
      • Adding olaratumab to doxorubicin for the treatment of advanced disease improves survival compared to doxorubicin alone.

      Abstract

      Uterine leiomyosarcoma is the most common type of uterine sarcoma. It is an extremely aggressive malignancy associated with a poor overall prognosis. Women affected may vary in age, but are most often diagnosed in their perimenopausal years. Presenting symptoms may be vague and mimic other benign uterine conditions. Preoperative diagnosis of leiomyosarcoma is difficult and often only made at time of surgical resection. These rare mesenchymal tumors are characterized by cytologic atypia, a high mitotic index, and tumor necrosis on histologic inspection. Management of early stage disease entails hysterectomy and complete surgical resection of gross tumor, though routine oophorectomy or lymph node dissection do not appear to confer much clinical benefit. Adjuvant therapy for early stage disease remains controversial as multiple clinical trials have failed to demonstrate benefit on overall survival. Recently, progress has been made in regards to therapy for advanced and recurrent disease. Novel chemotherapeutics, targeted therapies such as olaratumab and pazopanib, and new immunotherapies such as nivolumab and pembrolizumab have demonstrated promise in these previously difficult drug-resistant patients. In this article, we provide a detailed review of uterine leiomyosarcoma including epidemiology, clinical presentation, diagnosis, and pathologic characteristics. We then go on detail management strategies, including options for adjuvant therapy, and highlight new and developing regimens in the field.

      Keywords

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