Background: Malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors (MPNSTs) are rare soft tissue sarcomas, with approximately 50% occurring in patients diagnosed with neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF-1). NF-1 occurs in approximately 1/3000 individuals, and given that the lifetime prevalence of MPNST is estimated at 8%–13%, synchronous development of separate MPNSTs is plausible. We sought to report the incidence of synchronous MPNST in a cohort of pathology-proven cases since 1994. Methods: Records since 1994 were queried and identified 192 patients with pathology-proven MPNST. Medical records of these patients were reviewed to search for patients with synchronous MPNSTs. Results: Retrospective review of 192 patients treated for MPNST at our institution (including 71 patients with NF-1) revealed only 1 patient with synchronous MPNSTs. A 48-year-old woman with NF-1 presented with progressive right upper and lower extremity pain and radicular symptoms. Biopsies of right sciatic and median nerve lesions revealed high-grade MPNST, and she underwent radiotherapy and complete resection of both masses. Due to initial nonspecific biopsy results and patient preference, treatment of the median nerve lesion was delayed by 8 months. She did not have recurrence of her disease at the 18-month follow-up. Conclusions: Synchronous development of MPNST is unusual, with an incidence of 1.4% in our cohort of NF-1 patients with MPNSTs. Given the reported incidence of synchronous MPNST, the rate of malignant transformation in NF-1 may be overestimated. However, heightened suspicion for malignant transformation should continue in patients harboring a diagnosis of MPNST.
- Malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology