Sarcoma: Seeking Care for a Rare Cancer

Sarcoma – a cancer most people have never heard of….it’s rare; only 1% of all cancers diagnosed in adults and 15% of childhood cancers are sarcoma.

There are numerous types of sarcoma classified according to where the tumor originates in the body.  For example, bone sarcomas begin in the bone; soft tissue sarcoma may start in the muscle, tendons, fat or other tissues that support, connect or surround organs, joints, blood vessels or nerves.

It’s not surprising when the diagnosis is a rare cancer- like sarcoma, that patients and family can experience a wide range of emotions including:

  • Shock- if the person is not feeling  ill or having pain
  • Distress and vulnerability with the realization of facing a life threatening illness
  • Confusion surrounding understanding complex medical information

Many people with a new diagnosis of sarcoma are not sure what to do, or what kind of doctor to see.

According to the National Cancer Institute, research has shown that patients have better outcomes when they are referred to a specialized sarcoma treatment center. So seeking care from a dedicated team of sarcoma experts like those found at the U-M Sarcoma Clinic is an important first step. Even though rare, U-M sees and treats hundreds of cases each year…we are very familiar with this disease.

Fortunately chemotherapy, targeted therapy, radiation, and surgery (or a combination of these) are treatments that continue to demonstrate remarkable treatment success. And research for new therapies continues. Our Sarcoma Program has an active clinical trials program dedicated to advances in sarcoma treatment.

Learn more about sarcoma by visiting:

American Cancer Society Adult Sarcoma and Osteosarcoma information.

Have you or someone you care for been diagnosed with sarcoma? If so, leave a comment and let us know what you found most helpful when seeking care or deciding on treatment.

back to top