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Desmoid Tumor Essay

796 words - 4 pages

Desmoid tumors are tumors that appear from cells that are called fibroblasts. Fibroblasts can be found throughout the body, and their role is to help supply support and protection to organs such as the lungs, liver, blood vessels, heart, kidneys, skin and intestines. Fibroblasts also have a vital role in wound healing. Desmoid tumors frequently occur in women in their 30’s, but can turn up in anyone of any age. Desmoid tumors can sometimes be slow growing, but can also be extremely aggressive. Desmoids do not spread to other parts of the body but they can invade structures, affix to and destroy bones. Desmoid tumors are rare tumors that are commonly located in the abdomen, have a high ...view middle of the document...

This compression can cause abdominal pain, alter bowel habits and cause rectal bleeding. To diagnose a desmoid tumor, you need to have a biopsy. They often do an ultrasound to look at the soft tissue tumor. If they see a solid mass, they will do an MRI to see if the tumor adheres to close structures and determine if it can be removed safely. There are many options for biopsying a possible desmoid. Core needle biopsy takes a small section of the tumor (1 mm wide by 10 mm long), surgical biopsies take a piece of the tumor, or they can remove all of the tumor that is visible. It is very uncommon to remove all evidence of the tumor; there is usually a positive margin left.
According to Dr. Pollock, a professor and a head of the Division of Surgical Oncology, each of the treatment options (systemic therapy, radiation therapy and surgery) all have a role in the treatment of these tumors. Finding the correct therapy or combination of therapies for a patient should include a whole team. Surgery is the recommended treatment for localized desmoid tumor patients. The goal is to acquire tumor free, negative margins while protecting functionality. Obtaining negative margins is very difficult. With surgery alone, desmoid tumors can have a high rate of recurrence. Statistics vary, but 25-40 percent of patients who have surgery can...

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