There are two categories of sarcomas:
Soft tissue sarcomas
The term soft tissue refers to tissues that connect, support, or surround other structures and organs of the body. Soft tissue includes muscles, tendons (bands of fiber that connect muscles to bones), fibrous tissues, fat, blood vessels, nerves, and synovial tissues (tissues around joints).
Malignant (cancerous) tumors that develop in soft tissue are called sarcomas, a term that comes from a Greek word meaning “fleshy growth.” There are many different kinds of soft tissue sarcomas. They are grouped together because they share certain microscopic characteristics, produce similar symptoms, and are generally treated in similar ways. (Bone tumors [osteosarcomas] are also called sarcomas, but are in a separate category because they have different clinical and microscopic characteristics and are treated differently.)
Non-soft tissue sarcomas
Non-Soft Tissue Sarcomas – The most common type of bone cancer is osteosarcoma, which develops in new tissue in growing bones. Another type of cancer, chondrosarcoma, arises in cartilage. Evidence suggests that Ewing’s sarcoma, another form of bone cancer, begins in immature nerve tissue in bone marrow. Osteosarcoma and Ewing’s sarcoma tend to occur more frequently in children and adolescents, while chondrosarcoma occurs more often in adults.
The Sarcoma Foundation of America has attempted to create location for patients, caregivers, and healthcare professionals to quickly learn about a particular sub-type of sarcoma. The number of subtypes of sarcomas is often debated. We have attempted to create a list that encompasses most of the sarcoma subtypes.
We hope this list will be a living document, and we will make every attempt to update it as new treatments and therapies become available for each subtype.
Alveolar Soft Part Sarcoma (ASPS)
Gastrointerstinal Stromal Tumor (GIST)
Malignant Fibro Histiocytoma (MFH)
Malignant Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumor (MPNST)