Fibrosarcoma of the childhood mandible
© Gosau et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2008
Received: 18 April 2008
Accepted: 16 September 2008
Published: 16 September 2008
A case of low-grade intraosseous fibrosarcoma of the mandible in a 9-year-old girl is described. The patient underwent pre-surgical chemotherapy which was abandoned as unsuccessful after two cycles. Radical tumour resection and mandibular reconstruction with a titanium bar were performed 3 months after diagnosis. No adjuvant therapy was given and lymph node dissection was not performed. No signs of recurrences or metastasis have been observed after a follow up time of 3 years so far. This article is presented to document the rarity of fibrosarcomas in the jaws of children and emphasizes the possible changes in the appearance of radiological imaging under tumour progression.
Fibrosarcoma is a malignant neoplasm of mesenchymal origin. Its occurrence in the jaw especially in childhood is very rare. An infantile and an adult form are described showing identical histopathological features but differing in survival prognosis. The presented case describes an fibrosarcoma originating in the mandible of a young girl. Of special interest is the change in radiological appearance of the tumour during treatment.
3 Years after the primary operation the patient shows no sign of recurrence or metastasis. The pulmonary finding shows no change or growing.
Fibrosarcoma is a very rare malignancy with possible occurrence in the whole head and neck region . It accounts only for one percent of all tumours in this region [2–4]. Due to location the more frequently seen periostal form is differentiated from the intraosseous fibrosarcoma. The periostal form shows a better overall 5-year survival rate of 75% . The intraosseous form in the head and neck region mainly occurs in the mandible . The WHO reports an overall 10-year survival of 83% in low grade and 34% in high grade sarcoma of the bone .
The mean age for the occurrence of fibrosarcoma is between the 2th and 6th decade with equal gender distribution . Fibrosarcomas rarely occur before the 3rd decade . The adult fibrosarcoma is differentiated from the infantile type which occurs according to WHO-definition before the 3rd year of age. Although infantile and adult fibrosarcoma are histologically identical, the infantile form carries a much more favourable prognosis. The infantile form meastasizes rarely and has a natural history similar to that of fibromatosis [4, 6].
Typically, the tumour presents with swelling, associated with pain and paraesthesia [1, 3, 8]. Radiological imaging of fibrosarcomas reveals radiolucent lesions with a geographical, moth-eaten or permeative pattern of bone destruction [5, 6, 9]. The absence of tumoural calcification or ossification can be of importance in differentiating fibrosarcomas from other malignancies such as chondrosarcomas and osteosarcomas. In contrast, the change of appearance in radiographic imaging, in the presented case, is striking. Whilst the initial radiographic findings were a purely osteolytic process with ill-defined borders, the radiographic follow up after 3 months revealed a completely different pattern with a high degree of radio-opacity resulting from increased mineralisation of the tumour mass due to new bone formation under chemotherapy.
Fibrosarcomas are graded from low to high malignancy after the FNCLCC grading system, depending on the number of mitotic figures, tumour differentiation and the presence of tumour-necrosis [6, 9, 10].
The prognosis is highly dependent on the tumour-grading and the success of complete resection [1, 2, 4, 6, 11]. The need for adjuvant radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy is still unclear but there is normally an indication in high-grade tumours because these tumours may present with subclinical or microscopic metastases at the time of diagnosis. The need for prophylactic neck dissection is controversially discussed and it is not performed in all cases [3, 12, 13]. The presented case was treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy, surgical resection and alloplastic mandibular reconstruction. Having regard to the age of the patient, the histological grade of the tumour and the absence of metastasis, it was decided that neither adjuvant therapy nor prophylactic neck dissection are indicated.
Written informed consent was obtained from the patient for publication of this case report and accompanying images. A copy of the written consent is available for review by the Editor-in-Chief of this journal.
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