One-year mortality in patients with bone and soft tissue sarcomas as an indicator of delay in presentation.
Nandra R., Hwang N., Matharu GS., Reddy K., Grimer R.
For many cancers, one-year mortality following diagnosis is a reflection of either advanced stage at diagnosis, multiple co-morbidities and/or complications of treatment. One-year mortality has not been reported for soft tissue or bone sarcomas. This study reports 1-year sarcoma mortality data over a 25-year period, investigates prognostic factors and considers whether a delay in presentation affects 1-year mortality.A total of 4,945 newly diagnosed bone sarcoma and soft tissue sarcoma patients were identified from a prospectively maintained, single institution oncology database. Of these, 595 (12%) died within 1 year of diagnosis. Both patient factors and tumour characteristics available at diagnosis were analysed for effect.There was significant variation in one-year mortality between different histological subtypes. There has been no significant change in mortality rate during the last 25 years (mean: 11.7%, standard deviation: 2.8 percentage points). Soft tissue sarcoma patients who survived over one year reported a longer duration of symptoms preceding diagnosis than those who died (median: 26 vs 20 weeks, p<0.001). Prognostic factors identified in both bone and soft tissue sarcomas mirrored those for mid to long-term survival, with high tumour stage, large tumour size, metastases at diagnosis and increasing age having the greatest predictive effect.One-year mortality in bone and soft tissue sarcoma patients is easy to measure, and could be a proxy for late presentation and therefore a potential performance indicator, similar to other cancers. It is possible to predict the risk of one-year mortality using factors available at diagnosis. Death within one year does not correlate with a long history but is associated with advanced disease at diagnosis.