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Pediatrics. 2012 Oct;130(4):e1019-25. doi: 10.1542/peds.2011-1307. Epub 2012 Sep 3.

Congenital fibrosarcoma and history of prenatal exposure to petroleum derivatives.

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  • 1Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Unit, Department of Pediatrics, University Hospital Virgen of Arrixaca, Murcia, Spain.


Congenital fibrosarcoma (CFS) is a rare fibrous tissue malignancy that usually presents in the first few years of life. It is unique among human sarcomas in that it has an excellent prognosis. We describe a temporal clustering of a number of cases of CFS and investigate the possible associated prenatal risk factors. The Pediatric Environmental History, a questionnaire developed in our clinic that is instrumental in determining environmental risk factors for tumor-related disease, was essential in documenting the presence or absence of risk factors considered as human carcinogens. We found a history of exposure to petroleum products in four cases of CFS that occurred at a greater than expected rate in a short time frame-an apparent cancer cluster. We call attention to the possibility that exposure to petroleum products raises the risk of developing CFS. While future studies should focus on systematic investigation of CFS and its underlying mechanisms, this report suggests the need for proactive measures to avoid exposure to solvents and petroleum products during pregnancy.

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