Soft tissue sarcomas, the Hospital enters the EURACAN network

13/01/2022

The Campus Bio-Medico University Hospital, a landmark for the treatment of sarcoma patients in central and southern Italy, has been accredited by the European Union as a centre specialising in the treatment of this rare but extremely aggressive type of carcinoma. The recognition, which came after a long evaluation process, places the Campus Bio-Medico University Hospital among the ERN/EURACAN centres, the European reference network for the diagnosis and treatment of rare tumours, and rewards the quality of patient care and scientific research.

Doctors, nurses and researchers from across the European Union, brought together in the EURACAN network, are committed to sharing knowledge and developing research projects to ensure sarcoma care for patients based on shared standards and a multidisciplinary approach.

Few institutions in Italy are accredited as reference centres according to the strict quality standards required by the EURACAN evaluation system. The Campus Bio-Medico University Hospital is one of the two in Rome together with the Hospital Physiotherapy Institutes (IFO) and has been scientifically and clinically collaborating for years with the Cancer Institute of Milan and the Don Gnocchi Institute.

Soft tissue sarcomas are rare tumours and account for only 1 per cent of solid tumours. However, they are very heterogeneous diseases and can present in more than 100 histological subtypes, each with distinctive biological and clinical features. Sarcomas originate from tissues of mesenchymal origin, such as muscle adipose tissue and other connective tissues, and can therefore occur anywhere in the body. A swelling the size of a golf ball and growing in size can be an alarm bell which requires immediate examination by a specialist.

Every year in Italy, around 5-6 persons per 100,000 are affected by a sarcoma, a total of around 3500 cases. Sarcomas are insidious tumours because they do not present any specific symptoms, especially in the early stages of their development. It is therefore a good idea to detect them immediately because, when they metastasize, the prognosis becomes very severe

“This is a very important milestone for us”, said Prof. Giuseppe Tonini, Director of Medical Oncology. “The work undertaken over years has been rewarded and it represents a guarantee of better care for all patients. For years now, our hospital has shone with a multidisciplinary team that is now recognised nationally and internationally as a reference point. Our commitment to scientific research, both clinical and translational, which we have been carrying out for years thanks to collaborations with the most prestigious international institutes, is also recognised”.

Equipped with a dedicated Diagnostic Therapeutic Treatment Pathway, the Hospital has amply surpassed all the standards assessed for EURACAN accreditation both structurally and organisationally. The scheduling of weekly meetings of the multidisciplinary team that brings together oncologists, surgeons, radiotherapists, anatomo-pathologists, radiologists and other specialists aiming at assessing individual cases and providing personalised and timely treatment to achieve the best possible results was particularly appreciated.