Introduction: Synovial sarcoma ranks as the fourth most common sarcoma, but it is uncommon in the hand. Most Synovial Sarcomas arise in para-articular soft tissue such as tendon, tendon sheath and bursa adjacent to the large joints capsules. Arround 60–70% of these tumors involve lower extremity and they frequently affect knee, thigh and foot. The reported incidence for Synovial Sarcoma in hand is only 8.5%.

Material and methods: We carried out a retrospective study of 6 hand and forearm sarcomas, of a series of 35 synovial sarcomas surgically treated in our center from 1991 to 1997, with a 6 years follow up (3y.–11y.). 3 patients were male and 3 female, with a mean age of 54 years at the moment of initial diagnosis. Histologically all of them were synovial sarcomas: 4 monophasic and 2 biphasic. The inmunochemistry showed that the neoplasic cells were positive for vimentin, epithelial membrane antigen and cytokeratin. 2 of them were localized in the palmar aspect of the hand (2 ulnar cases and 2 eminence tenar cases), an 2 cases were dorsal. 2 cases were misdiagnosed as benign lesions and treated with tumor excision at another center.

Results: Primary treatment consisted of radical local excision of synovial sarcoma of the hand. 5 patients received adjuvant chemotherapy with CYVADIC and radiotherapy. 2 cases of recurrence received a second surgical treatment with forearm amputation. The mean time to recurrence was 12 months. At the end of the follow-up 3 patients developed metastatic disease and 2 of them died.

Discussion: Synovial Sarcoma in hand is a highly malignant tumor; due to its morphology they can be misdiagnosed as benign lesions such as aggressive fibromatosis or ganglion cysts. If we diagnose a soft tissue tumor in hand we must practice complementary tests to achieve early diagnosis. It is also important the multidisciplinary treatment of Synovial Sarcoma.


  • Theses abstracts were prepared by Professor Roger Lemaire. Correspondence should be addressed to EFORT Central Office, Freihofstrasse 22, CH-8700 Küsnacht, Switzerland.