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Cancer Res Treat. 2019 Feb 18. doi: 10.4143/crt.2018.476. [Epub ahead of print]

Characteristics and Treatment Patterns of Patients with Advanced Soft Tissue Sarcoma in Korea.

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Division of Medical Oncology, Department of Internal Medicine, Yonsei Cancer Center, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
Department of Preventive Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
Department of Preventive Medicine, Eulji University College of Medicine, Daejeon, Korea.
Department of Biomedical Systems Informatics, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
Department of Public Health, Yonsei University Graduate School, Seoul, Korea.
Parc Sanitari Sant Joan de Déu, Fundació Sant Joan de Déu, CIBERSAM, Universitat de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain.
Eli Lilly and Company, Seoul, Korea.
Eli Lilly and Company, Windlesham, UK.



A soft tissue sarcoma (STS) is a rare type of cancer, accounting for 1% of adult solid cancers. The aim of the present study is to determine the incidence of localized and advanced STS in Korean patients, their treatment patterns, and the survival of patients by disease status.

Materials and Methods:

The STS patient cohort was defined using National Health Insurance Service medical data from 2002 to 2015. Incidence, distribution, anatomical location of tumors, survival rates (Kaplan-Meyer survival function) and treatment patterns were analyzed by applying different algorithms to the STS cohort containing localized and advanced STS cases.


A total of 7,813 patients were diagnosed with STS from 2007 to 2014, 4,307 were localized STS and 3,506 advanced STS cases. The total incidence of STS was 2.49 per 100,000 person-years: 1.37 per 100,000 person-years for localized STS and 1.12 per 100,000 person-years for advanced STS. The 5-year survival rate after diagnosis was 56.4% for all STS, 82.4% for localized, and 27.2% for advanced STS. Half (49.98%) of the advanced STS patients received anthracycline-containing chemotherapy as initial treatment after diagnosis.


This study provides insights into localized and advanced STS epidemiology, treatment patterns and outcomes in Korea, which could be used as fundamental data in improving clinical outcomes of STS patients in the future.


Advanced soft tissue sarcoma; Epidemiology; Korean population; Modality; Treatment pattern

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