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Soft Tissue Sarcoma

​​​Soft tissue sarcoma is cancer that develops in the body's connective tissue like fat, muscle, nerves, tendons, and joints.

The cancer occurs when cells grow abnormally and form tumors. Soft tissue sarcoma can start small but spread throughout the body.

Marshfield Clinic has cancer specialists who are experts in the treatment of soft tissue sarcoma.


The treatment of sarcoma depends on the size and location of the tumor, its grade, its subtype, whether the cancer has spread, and the person's overall health. 

In many cases, a team of specialists will work with the patient to determine the best treatment plan.


Surgery is the common treatment for soft tissue sarcoma. The goal is to remove the tumor and about one inch of healthy tissue around it to ensure all the cancer is gone. 

Larger sarcomas are often treated with a combination of surgery and radiation therapy. 

Radiation or chemotherapy may be used before surgery to shrink the tumor, or during and after surgery to remove any remaining cancer cells.


Chemotherapy uses drugs to kill cancer cells. The medication will travel through the body and attack cancer cells that have spread from the initial melanoma site to the lymph nodes and other organs.

Radiation Therapy

This treatment​​ uses high-energy X-rays to kill cancer cells. A team of trained personnel determines if this type of treatment is right for your cancer. Marshfield Clinic uses these radiation therapies for sarcoma:

  • IMRT - Intensity Modulation Radiation Therapy (IMRT). This allows the radiation oncology team to:
    • Customize a patient's treatment to the size, shape and location of the tumor.
    • Minimize the amount of healthy tissue that is exposed to radiation.
    • Treat tumors previously considered untreatable.
  • TomoTherapy® - a form of IRMT that delivers highly precise radiation therapy from all angels which can be used for many tumors, including those that are hard to reach. TomoTherapy targets tumors using built-in CT scanning to confirm the shape and position of the tumor before each treatment.
  • External beam radiation - refers to radiation targeted at cancer cells from outside the body.​​

Contact us for care

If this is a medical emergency, call 911.

Call: 1-866-520-2510

(Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.)

Test Your Knowledge of Cancer's Warning Signs

Early detection of cancer is important because it is usually easier to treat—and possibly cure—when caught early. Do you know what signs to look for? Take this quiz to find out more.

1. Any sudden or progressive change in a mole's appearance could be a sign of skin cancer.
2. A new mole or a change in an existing mole may be a sign of skin cancer.
3. One sign of malignant melanoma is a mole with shades of tan, brown, black, or blue.
4. Changes, lumps, or hard masses in the testicles are signs of testicular cancer.
5. A change in bowel habits—blood in the stool or chronic constipation—is a common symptom of stomach cancer.
6. Lumps, hard knots, or a thickening in the breast could mean breast cancer.
7. A nagging cough or hoarseness could be signs of lung cancer.
8. Prostate cancer often has no symptoms in its early stages.
9. Symptoms of mouth or tongue cancer include a sore inside the mouth that doesn't heal and mouth pain that doesn't get better or go away.
10. Bladder cancer has no symptoms.