Angiosarcoma of the scalp: treatment with liposomal doxorubicin and radiotherapy
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Purpose: Angiosarcoma of the scalp and face is a rare malignant endothelial tumor arising mainly in elderly people. The prognosis is poor. Effective and safe treatments are warranted. Methods: A 79-year-old woman with an angiosarcoma of the scalp larger than 5 cm in diameter was treated with intravenous liposomal doxorubicin, 20 mg per square meter body surface (i.e., 30 mg) once per month followed by radiotherapy. Results: After 12 infusions of liposomal doxorubicin, we observed a partial remission with a >50% decrease of affected area and disappearance of ulceration. After 21 infusions, however, there was no further improvement. We decided to discontinue chemotherapy but move on with radiotherapy with an electron beam using fractionated doses of 2 Gy five times per week for up to a total of 40 Gy. To ensure a maximum dose in the upper layer of the dermis a bolus technique was used. Radiotherapy was terminated due to a temporary circumscribed epidermolysis. At the end of treatment a remarkable regression of the cutaneous lesion was noted. During the subsequent 24 months she has not developed any metastatic spread. Conclusion: Sequential therapy of bad prognosis angiosarcoma with liposomal doxorubicin followed by radiotherapy showed a marked clinical improvement and prolonged relapse-free survival in this patient.
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