Recurrence after and complications associated with adjuvant treatments for sacral giant cell tumor

Pietro Ruggieri, Andreas F. Mavrogenis, Giuseppe Ussia, Andrea Angelini, Panayiotis J. Papagelopoulos, Mario Mercuri

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Background: The best treatment of giant cell tumor of the sacrum is controversial. It is unclear whether adjuvant treatment with intralesional surgery reduces recurrences or increases morbidity. Questions/purposes: We therefore asked whether adjuvants altered recurrence rates and complications after intralesional surgery for sacral giant cell tumors. Methods: We retrospectively studied 31 patients with sacral giant cell tumors treated with intralesional surgery with and without adjuvants. Survival to local recurrence was evaluated using Kaplan-Meier analysis. The differences in survival to local recurrence with and without adjuvants were evaluated using multivariate Cox regression analysis. Complications were recorded from clinical records and images. The minimum followup was 36 months (median, 108 months; range, 36-276 months). Results: Overall survival to local recurrence was 90% at 60 and 120 months. Survival to local recurrence with and without radiation was 91% and 89%, with and without embolization was 91% and 86%, and with and without local adjuvants was 88% and 92%, respectively. Adjuvants had no influence on local recurrence. Mortality was 6%: one patient died at 14 days postoperatively from a massive pulmonary embolism and another patient had radiation and died of a high-grade sarcoma. Fifteen of the 31 patients (48%) had one or more complications: eight patients (26%) had wound complications and seven patients (23%) had massive bleeding during curettage with hemodynamic instability. L5-S2 neurologic deficits decreased from 23% preoperatively to 13% postoperatively; S3-S4 deficits increased from 16% to 33%. Conclusions: Adjuvants did not change the likelihood of local recurrence when combined with intralesional surgery but the complication rate was high.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2954-2961
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Orthopaedics and Related Research
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Medicine(all)


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