What is Sarcoma?
Sarcoma is a cancer of the bone or connective tissue, such as nerves, muscles, cartilage, tendons, fat, and blood vessels. These malignancies can occur in the arms, legs, chest, abdomen, head or neck. There are over 150 subtypes of sarcoma, with each having a distinctly different genetic makeup. Sarcomas comprise less than 1% of adult cancers and 15% of pediatric cancers. Approximately 15,000 individuals are diagnosed with bone or soft-tissue sarcoma in the U.S. each year.
- Approximately one-half of bone sarcomas and about one-fifth of soft tissue sarcomas are diagnosed in people under the age of 35.
- The overall relative 5-year survival rate of people with soft tissue sarcoma is 50%, a statistic that has not changed in decades.
- Sarcoma is curable by surgery about 20% of the time, or by surgery with chemotherapy and/or radiation 30% of the time, yet today nearly half of the time they remain totally resistant to all of these approaches.
Sources: National Cancer Institute, Sarcoma Foundation of America, and Sarcoma Alliance