Dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans: a population-based cancer registry descriptive study of 66 consecutive cases diagnosed between 1982 and 2002.

Department of Dermatology, Orléans Hospital, Orléans, France.
Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology (Impact Factor: 2.69). 12/2006; 20(10):1237-42. DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-3083.2006.01780.x
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans (DFSP) is a rare malignant tumour of the skin, with an estimated incidence of 0.8 to five cases per 1 million people per year.
To study epidemiological, immunohistochemical and clinical features, delay in diagnosis, type of treatment and outcome of DFSP from 1982 to 2002.
Using data from the population-based cancer registry, 66 patients with pathologically proved DFSP were included (fibrosarcomatous DFSP were excluded). Each patient lived in one of the four departments of Franche-Comté (overall population of 1 million people) at the time of diagnosis. The main data sources came from public and private pathology laboratories and medical records. The rules of the International Agency for Research on Cancer were applied.
The estimated incidence of DFSP in Franche-Comté was about three new cases per 1 million people per year. Male patients were affected 1.2 times as often as female patients were. The trunk (45%) followed by the proximal extremities (38%) were the most frequent locations. DFSP occurred mainly in young adults between 20 and 39 years of age. Mean age at diagnosis was 43 years, and the mean delay in diagnosis was 10.08 years. Our 66 patients initially underwent a radical local excision. Among them, 27% experienced one or more local recurrences during 9.6 years of follow-up. There was one regional lymph node recurrence without visceral metastases. These recurrences were significantly related to the initial peripheral resection margins. We observed a local recurrence rate of 47% for margins less than 3 cm, vs. only 7% for margins ranging from 3 to 5 cm [P=0.004; OR=0.229 (95%, CI=0.103-0.510)]. The mean time to a first local recurrence was 2.65 years. Nevertheless, there was no death due to the DFSP course at the end of the follow-up, and the final outcome was favourable.
Our study emphasizes the importance of wide local excision with margins of at least 3 cm in order to prevent local recurrence. However, the recent development of inhibitors of signal transduction by the PDGFB pathway should soon modify the surgical strategy, which is often too mutilating.

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