The Pathway

Referrals from General Practice

If a patient presents to their GP with a soft tissue lump, the GP will arrange an ultrasound scan which should be done on an urgent basis if there is concern that this may be a sarcoma.

If the ultrasound scan shows a mass that needs further investigation under a specialist team, the GP should refer the patient to the Sarcoma service in Sheffield on an urgent basis. The scans will be reviewed in the next Sarcoma Multi-disciplinary meeting (MDT).

If the MDT feels the scans do not show any concerning features of a malignant lesion, a sarcoma out-patient appointment may not be necessary. The referring GP will receive an MDT outcome to inform them of this and we will advise on any further management that may be required.

If our review of the scans suggests further investigations are required, the patient will receive an appointment letter for these. Investigations may include MRI scan, CT scan and a biopsy. The biopsy involves taking a small sample of the lump to be looked at by our pathologists. This procedure is performed under local anaesthetic and the patient will be able to go home on the same day.

The results of these investigations will be discussed in the Sarcoma MDT and decision on the need for and type of treatment will be discussed between the different doctors at the meeting.

The patient will then be seen in clinic by members of the team to discuss results and the treatment plan we recommend.

Referrals from other hospital specialists

The sarcoma service often receives referrals from other hospital specialists who would like an opinion on a lump. In most cases the patient will be aware they they have a lump but sometimes the lump or mass is seen incidentally on a scan being done for another problem. The patient may not be aware they have the lump as it may be sitting within deeper tissue.

The referring specialist doctor will inform the patient of the referral to our service. The scan will be discussed in the Sarcoma MDT and we will then decide if we think further scans and a biopsy (as explained in section above) are indicated. We will contact the patient directly to arrange these.

Results of these additional investigations will then be discussed in the MDT and we will then arrange to see the patient in clinic with the results and to discuss the treatment plan we recommend.

Sarcoma Multi-disciplinary meeting (MDT)

The MDT takes place on a Thursday at Weston Park hospital and runs from 8am. All members of the team from all the specialties are present. New cases are discussed along with patients who are having follow-up under our care.

Scan and pathology results are discussed and we decide on a treatment plan for each patient. Letters are generated from the MDT discussion and sent to the patients GP and (if appropriate) the referring specialist to keep them updated. We will obviously see patients in clinic to discuss the results of MDT discussions where appropriate.


Additional Information

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