Annals of Surgical Oncology

, Volume 22, Issue 9, pp 2824–2830 | Cite as

The Influence of Time Interval Between Preoperative Radiation and Surgical Resection on the Development of Wound Healing Complications in Extremity Soft Tissue Sarcoma

  • Anthony M. GriffinEmail author
  • Colleen I. Dickie
  • Charles N. Catton
  • Peter W. M. Chung
  • Peter C. Ferguson
  • Jay S. Wunder
  • Brian O’Sullivan
Bone and Soft Tissue Sarcomas



The aim of this study was to determine the relationship of the time interval between completion of preoperative radiation therapy (RT) and surgical resection on wound complications (WCs) in extremity soft tissue sarcoma (STS).


Overall, 798 extremity STS patients were managed with preoperative RT and surgery from 1989 to 2013. WCs were defined as requiring secondary operations/invasive procedures for wound care, use of vacuum-assisted closure, prolonged dressing changes, or infection within 120 days of surgery.


Mean tumor size was 8.8 cm. A total of 743 (93 %) tumors were primary presentations, 565 (71 %) patients had lower extremity tumors, and 238 patients (30 %) had a prior unplanned excision. Of 242 patients (30 %) who developed a WC, 206 (37 %) had lower extremity tumors and 36 (15 %) had upper extremity tumors. Mean time from RT completion to surgery was 41.3 (range 4–470) days; 42.0 (range 4–470) days for upper extremity cases, and 41.1 (range 4–109) days for lower extremity cases. Similarly, mean time interval for patients who developed a WC was 40.9 (range 4–100) days, and 41.5 (range 4–470) days for those who did not develop a WC (p = 0.69). Thirty-nine cases (5 %) had surgery within 3 weeks of RT; 15 (38 %) patients developed WCs versus 227 (30 %) patients who had their tumors excised after 3 weeks (p = 0.28). One hundred and twenty-nine (16 %) patients had surgery within 4 weeks, and 39 (30 %) patients developed WCs versus 203 (30 %) patients who had their tumors excised after 4 weeks (p = 1.0). A trend towards a higher rate of WCs was seen for those patients who had surgery after 6 weeks (28 % prior vs. 34 % after; p = 0.08). There was no difference in WCs with intensity-modulated RT (IMRT) versus non-IMRT cases (p = 0.6).


The time interval between preoperative RT and surgical excision in extremity STS had minimal influence on the development of WCs. Four- or 5-week intervals showed equivalent complication rates between the two groups, suggesting an optimal interval to reduce potential WCs.


Postoperative Radiation Therapy Preoperative Radiation Therapy Malignant Fibrous Histiocytoma Myxoid Liposarcoma Wound Healing Complication 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



Anthony M. Griffin, Colleen I. Dickie, Charles N. Catton, Peter W.M. Chung, Peter C. Ferguson, Jay S. Wunder, and Brian O’Sullivan have no disclosures to declare.


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Copyright information

© Society of Surgical Oncology 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anthony M. Griffin
    • 1
    Email author
  • Colleen I. Dickie
    • 2
    • 3
  • Charles N. Catton
    • 2
    • 3
  • Peter W. M. Chung
    • 2
    • 3
  • Peter C. Ferguson
    • 1
    • 4
  • Jay S. Wunder
    • 1
    • 4
  • Brian O’Sullivan
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.University Musculoskeletal Oncology UnitMount Sinai HospitalTorontoCanada
  2. 2.Department of Radiation OncologyPrincess Margaret Cancer CentreTorontoCanada
  3. 3.Department of Radiation OncologyUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada
  4. 4.Division of Orthopaedic Surgery, Department of SurgeryUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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