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Pulmonary artery sarcoma masquerading as pulmonary embolism: an under-recognised entity
  1. Swati Chand1,
  2. Sangharsha Thapa2,
  3. Soham Upadhye1 and
  4. Soidjon Khodjaev1
  1. 1Department of Cardiology, Rochester Regional Health, Rochester, New York, USA
  2. 2Department of Neurology, University of Minnesota Medical School Twin Cities, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Sangharsha Thapa; sthapa{at}


Pulmonary artery sarcoma is a rare disease with only a handful of cases reported. It is histologically classified as leiomyosarcoma, spindle cell sarcoma, fibrous histiocytoma or undifferentiated sarcoma. The disease is mostly misdiagnosed as pulmonary thromboembolism and carries a grim prognosis with an average survival of only a few months. Misdiagnosis often results in patients being treated inappropriately and diagnosed in later stages of the disease. This delay in diagnosis can be associated with significant mortality in the setting of an already poor prognosis. Early aggressive surgery targeting complete surgical resection is the standard treatment. Chemotherapy and radiation therapy have been tried with variable outcomes. Given the aggressive nature of pulmonary artery sarcoma, regular post-surgery follow-up is indicated.

  • Pulmonary embolism
  • Respiratory cancer

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  • Contributors SC—conception and design, drafting of the manuscript, manuscript revision, visualisation, writing, reviewing and editing the article. ST—critical revision of the manuscript, literature review, writing, reviewing and editing the article. SU—supervision, literature review and manuscript revision. SK—literature review, manuscript revision, reviewing and editing the manuscript.

  • 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.

  • Case reports provide a valuable learning resource for the scientific community and can indicate areas of interest for future research. They should not be used in isolation to guide treatment choices or public health policy.

  • Competing interests None declared.

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