Object. This is a retrospective review of 146 surgically treated benign and malignant peripheral non—neural sheath tumors (PNNSTs). Tumor classifications with patient numbers, locations of benign PNNSTs, and surgical techniques and adjunctive treatments are presented. The results of a literature review regarding tumor frequencies are presented.
Methods. One hundred forty-six patients with 111 benign and 35 malignant PNNSTs were treated between 1969 and 1999 at the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center (LSUHSC). The benign tumors included 33 ganglion cysts, 16 cases of localized hypertrophic neuropathy, 12 lipomas, 12 tumors of vascular origin, and 11 desmoid tumors. There were four each of lipofibrohamartomas, myositis ossificans, osteochondromas, and ganglioneuromas; two each of meningiomas, cystic hygromas, myoblastoma or granular cell tumors, triton tumors, and lymphangiomas; and one epidermoid cyst. The locations of benign PNNSTs were the following: 33 in the brachial plexus region, 39 in an upper extremity, one in the pelvic plexus, and 38 in a lower extremity.
The malignant PNNSTs included 35 surgically treated carcinomas, 15 of which originated in the breast and nine in the lung. There were two melanomas metastatic to nerve and one tumor each that had metastasized from the bladder, rectum, skin, head and neck, and thyroid, and from a primary Ewing sarcoma. There was a single lymphoma that had metastasized to the radial nerve and one chordoma and one osteosarcoma, each of which had metastasized to the brachial plexus.
Conclusions. There were more benign PNNSTs than malignant ones. Benign tumors were relatively equally distributed in the brachial plexus region and upper and lower extremities, with the exception of the pelvic plexus, which had only one tumor.