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Uterine leiomyosarcoma: a rare clinical entity
  1. Louise Dunphy1 and
  2. Gemma Sheridan2
  1. 1Department of Surgery, Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust, Reading, UK
  2. 2Department of Gynaecology, Liverpool Women's Hospital, Liverpool, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Louise Dunphy; Louise.Dunphy{at}


Leiomyosarcoma is a rare aggressive malignant mesenchymal tumour, accounting for 1% of all uterine malignancies. It spreads rapidly through the intraperitoneal and haematogenous pathways. It is often diagnosed postoperatively following myomectomy, hysterectomy or supracervical hysterectomy for presumed benign disease. It has a predilection for perimenopausal women with a median age of 50 years. Individuals may describe symptoms of vaginal or abdominal pressure. Physical examination may reveal a large palpable pelvic mass, which may haemorrhage. Surgery remains the mainstay of treatment. Hysterectomy and a bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy may be considered, depending on the individual’s menopausal status. Ovarian preservation can be considered in young patients. Adjuvant systemic treatment and radiotherapy are of no benefit. Gemcitabine/docetaxel and doxorubicin have shown benefit in the treatment of advanced or recurrent disease. The authors present the case of a 44-year-old woman with lower abdominal pain, vaginal bleeding and a uterine fibroid. Laboratory investigations confirmed a leucocytosis, neutrophilia and a thrombocythaemia. Further investigation with an MRI pelvis showed a very large, heterogeneous, malignant appearing pelvic mass compressing the right ureter and it appeared uterine in nature. Her staging CT showed multiple lung metastases. The diagnosis of uterine leiomyosarcoma was subsequently established. Due to the aggressive behaviour of this sarcoma subtype, novel early detection strategies and targeted therapies are required.

  • cancer - see oncology
  • gynecological cancer

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  • Contributors LD: wrote the case report. GS: edited the case report.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.