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Mol Clin Oncol. 2017 Dec;7(6):1045-1052. doi: 10.3892/mco.2017.1456. Epub 2017 Oct 18.

En bloc resection, intraoperative extracorporeal irradiation and re-implantation of involved bone for the treatment of limb malignancies.

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Department of Orthopedics, Southwest Hospital, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing 400038, P.R. China.


Reconstruction of the defect following limb-sparing resection of malignant bone tumors is controversial and extremely challenging. Extracorporeal irradiation (ECI) and re-implantation have been used for limb salvage surgery for patients, with major advantages, including biological reconstruction, ready availability and preservation of bone stock, over replacement with a megaprosthesis. The purpose of the present study was to present our experience and details of all patients treated with this surgery. Between June 2005 and December 2014, we followed-up 23 patients with limb malignancies who were treated with en bloc excision followed by 50-Gy single dose ECI and re-implantation of involved bone segments. All cases were evaluated based on clinical and radiological examinations, complications and Musculoskeletal Tumor Society (MSTS) score. Mean follow-up period was 77.6 months (range, 17-116 months). A total of 17 patients (73.9%) demonstrated no evidence of disease, 5 (21.7%) patients succumbed to the disease and 1 (4.3%) patient was alive with the disease at the final follow-up. Local recurrence occurred in 3 patients (recurrence rate, 13.0%) in the bed outside of the irradiated graft, and 4 of the 5 patients that lost their lives did so due to associated metastatic disease. The mean value of the MSTS score was 78.8% (50-93.3%). The majority of patients demonstrated solid bony union; however, 3 patients had non-union (13.0%) and 1 had a delayed union (4.3%). Early or late complications occurred in 11 patients (47.8%). Although the complication rate (47.8%) and re-operation rate (39.1%) were high, ECI and re-implantation may be a useful and cheap technique following en bloc resection for limb salvage in appropriately selected patients.


extracorporeal irradiation and re-implantation; limb salvage; musculoskeletal tumors

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