UW Medicine's sarcoma specialists are nationally recognized healthcare professionals with extensive clinical knowledge and surgical expertise. This multidisciplinary team offers personalized treatment plans based on the type and stage of disease, and each patient's genetics, life circumstances, and other factors unique to the individual.
In addition to being UW Medicine healthcare professionals, our sarcoma specialists work as part of the
Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (SCCA), a cooperative alliance of UW Medicine,
Fred Hutchison Cancer Research Center, and
Seattle Children's. Sarcoma patients at UW Medicine can expect to have a team of healthcare professionals who work collaboratively to find the best comprehensive approach for each individual.
Sarcoma is a cancer that originates in the connective tissues of the body. Sarcomas are divided into two main categories: soft tissue sarcomas and bone cancers. The most common soft tissue sarcomas in adults are gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST), leiomyosarcoma, liposarcoma, and pleomorphic sarcoma. The most common bone cancer is osteosarcoma. While rare among adults, sarcoma is often hard to diagnose and treat. For this reason, it's critical that sarcoma patients are treated at a multidisciplinary cancer center where a team of experts collaborates to determine the best treatment approach. We focus on integrated, patient-centered care to maximize quality of life and opportunity for cure. Our team includes sarcoma experts from surgery, medical oncology, radiology, radiation oncology, social work, nursing, nutrition, physical therapy, psychiatry and pain medicine all working together to provide the best possible care.
Sarcomas are generally treated with a combination of therapies that may include chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation. Your treatment will depend on the size and location of your tumor, its grade, its subtype, whether the cancer has spread, and the possible impact of the treatment on your body and your general health.
Surgery is the most common treatment for sarcoma. Radiation therapy, chemotherapy, or a combination of both may be given before or after surgery to reduce the risk of the cancer returning. If your tumor cannot be removed surgically due to its size or location, doctors may use radiation and chemotherapy to reduce the size of the sarcoma or to relieve pain and other symptoms.
Many patients may also have the opportunity to participate in clinical trials. These trials broaden patients' treatment options to include the latest and most innovative therapies.
Where You Will Be Seen
Deciding on where to receive treatment is the most important decision a patient with cancer will make. Studies have shown that patients who begin their treatment at a top regional cancer center have better outcomes than those who start their treatment elsewhere.
Patients will be seen at either UW Medicine Bone and Joint Surgery Center or SCCA Sarcoma Clinic, depending upon their specific cancer diagnosis or suspected diagnosis. Rest assured that our goal is to have you seen by the right people in the right place for your specific circumstance.
If you have a confirmed sarcoma diagnosis or a bone or soft tissue tumor suspicious for sarcoma, you may self-refer by calling the SCCA's Patient Intake Office at 206.288.SCCA (7222) or the Bone and Joint Surgery Center at UWMC at 206.598.4288.