Prevalence

Sarcomas compose less than 1% of all adult and 15% of pediatric malignancies.1 The shoulder girdle is a relatively common site for malignant bone and soft tissue tumors. Chondrosarcomas are the most common primary malignancy of the scapula. The proximal humerus is the site of 12% of these tumors. This also is the third most common site of osteosarcomas. Moreover, Ewing's sarcomas occur in the proximal humerus 7% of the time, and in the scapula 4-5% of the time. Other less common bone tumors of the shoulder girdle include multiple myeloma, lymphoma, and hemangiopericytoma.3

Thirteen percent of soft tissue sarcomas occur in the upper extremities. These often include malignant fibrous histiocytoma, liposarcoma, leiomyosarcoma, fibrosarcoma, and synovial sarcoma.1

Metastases from cancers such as renal cell carcinoma, melanoma, lung, and breast cancer have also been reported to metastasize to the shoulder girdle.

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