Although rare, sarcoma presents a significant diagnostic and treatment challenge, especially for physicians who do not specialize in treating the disease. In this article, one expert in Ireland, Dr. Charles Gillham, emphasized the importance of treatment centers that have physicians who specialize in the treatment of sarcoma. For instance, he said, people with sarcoma who experience the best outcomes receive care at large multidisciplinary centers. Additionally, many general practitioners, while knowledgeable and experienced in the care of many different types of patients, may only encounter one or two patients with sarcoma throughout their careers, thereby limiting their experience with the disease. Unfortunately, this may mean missed diagnoses, which is critical because catching sarcoma in its early stages means better outcomes for the patient. A national facility or facilities that streamline care for these patients would therefore optimize treatment, Dr. Gillham said. Fortunately, the inaugural meeting of a national sarcoma group in Ireland will meet with experts from around the world that will help patients have access to the best care possible.
Sarcoma is a very rare form of cancer, with only 150 to 200 cases a year in Ireland, but a specialist national treatment facility to deal with it is needed, a specialist in the condition has said. Dr. Charles Gillham, consultant radiation oncologist at St Luke’s Hospital in Dublin, said the best outcomes for people with sarcoma were among those treated in a large multidisciplinary center.