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Epithelioid sarcoma is a rare, slow-growing type of soft tissue cancer. Most cases begin in the soft tissue under the skin of a finger, hand, forearm, lower leg or foot, though it can start in other areas of the body.
Typically, epithelioid sarcoma starts as a small firm growth or lump that's painless. It usually starts out as a single growth, but multiple growths may occur by the time a person seeks medical help. Sometimes this sarcoma appears as ulcers that don't heal, looking like open wounds over the growths.
The classic form (distal-type) of epithelioid sarcoma mainly occurs in teenagers and young adults. A rarer form, called large-cell (proximal-type) epithelioid sarcoma, tends to be more aggressive and mainly affects adults.
Epithelioid sarcoma tends to have a high rate of recurrence and can spread to other areas. So if epithelioid sarcoma is suspected, it's best to seek care at a comprehensive cancer center that sees more cases of soft tissue sarcoma to ensure proper diagnosis and treatment, and to help prevent the cancer from recurring.
Epithelioid sarcoma can be difficult to diagnose because it may be confused with other conditions that have similar signs. For example, an ulcer on the skin that isn't healing could be mistaken for a skin infection.
Tests and procedures used in diagnosis of epithelioid include:
Surgery is the most common treatment for epithelioid sarcoma, but other treatments may be used in addition to surgery.
Last Updated May 5, 2020