Treatment for Sarcoma

When treating a complex condition like sarcoma, we believe the best outcomes result from a multidisciplinary approach to your care. At Fox Chase Cancer Center, our sarcoma team of surgical oncologists, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, orthopedic oncologists, radiologists and pathologists work together seamlessly to assess your cancer and help you understand your options. We value our role in helping you and your loved ones make informed decisions about your treatment.

When you contact Fox Chase, you will be connected with a nurse navigator. The nurse navigator will match you with the right specialists and help you see as many members of your treatment team as possible in one day. Together, your care team weighs in on your case, creates a tailored plan, and meets to discuss treatment strategies.

Once we have determined where your sarcoma is located and whether it has spread, we will recommend a personalized treatment plan, which may include clinical trial options to consider. The Fox Chase sarcoma team is a world leader in developing many new therapies for this disease, and offers a variety of clinical trial options for sarcoma patients.

We strive to treat your condition in the least invasive way possible with innovative surgical techniques and combination therapies that give you the best chance of a successful outcome.

Your Treatment Options

After consultations with multiple physicians on our multidisciplinary team, we will create your personalized treatment plan based on the following factors:

  • The stage, type and grade of your tumor
  • Whether it has spread to other organs
  • Your age, health history and personal treatment goals

Depending on your unique circumstances, your sarcoma treatment plan at Fox Chase may include one or more of the following options:

Clinical Trials

Fox Chase doctors are not just clinical specialists — they are also world-renowned cancer researchers. The results of studies we conduct at Fox Chase have been crucial in advancing the understanding of sarcoma diagnosis and treatment worldwide. In particular, our research and advancements in the clinical management of gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) have brought a high volume of GIST patients to Fox Chase.

In addition to offering the latest treatments for sarcoma, we are actively developing and evaluating new therapies, often before they are available anywhere else. We encourage eligible patients to participate in clinical trials that are available and appropriate for their stage and type of sarcoma.

Order of Treatments

Many patients with sarcoma will undergo more than one treatment. You may hear your physicians use certain terms to refer to those treatments and when they are administered. Following is an explanation of those common terms:

  • Neoadjuvant: Treatment to shrink the tumor before surgery
  • Primary/First-line: The first and main treatment given to rid the body of cancer
  • Adjuvant: Given after primary surgery to kill any remaining cancer cells
  • Second-line: The next set of treatments given after the first or previous treatments were not sufficiently effective
“We not only have detailed conversations with our patients about treatment goals as we see them, but also what their own goals are in terms of their disease and the rest of their life. Because, although you are a sarcoma patient, your life is more than just having cancer.”
Margaret von Mehren, MD, Medical Oncologist and Chief, Division of Sarcoma Medical Oncology