The treatment of soft tissue sarcomas with focus on chemotherapy: A review

H. M. Pinedo, J. Verweij

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Radical surgery remains the most effective treatment of soft tissue sarcomas. The postoperative addition of radiotherapy appears to reduce local recurrence in extremity lesions. To date, there are still only two drugs with major activity as a single agent in the treatment of soft tissue sarcomas: doxorubicin (DX) and ifosfamide (IFX). Doxorubicin should be administered preferably as 3-weekly bolus injections at doses higher than 60 mg/m2 because of its dose-response relationship. In combination chemotherapy ADIC and CYVADIC are probably the best choice. Although there are no definite data on increased activity with the addition of cyclophosphamide (CTX) and vincristine (VCR) to ADIC, we prefer CYVADIC because of the higher reported complete response rate. A limited number of patients with soft tissue sarcomas achieving a complete response with chemotherapy, will probably be cured, and for this reason it is important to aim at achieving a complete response. Preoperative intraarterial chemotherapy in locally advanced soft tissue sarcomas may further improve survival results, but before definite conclusions can be drawn, this technique should be investigated in randomized studies. Postoperative adjuvant chemotherapy should still be considered investigational, as no advantage has been observed in head, neck and trunk lesions, while data on extremity lesions are still conflicting.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)193-205
Number of pages13
JournalRadiotherapy and Oncology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1986
Externally publishedYes


  • Chemotherapy
  • Soft tissue sarcomas

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Urology


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