Scalp Leiomyosarcoma: Diagnosis and Treatment During a Global Pandemic With COVID-19

Hebah Hassan, Amit Elazar, Kazuaki Takabe, Rajiv Datta, Hideo Takahashi, Eric Seitelman


Leiomyosarcoma is an aggressive, uncommon sarcoma effecting smooth muscle tissue. Prompt tissue diagnosis and staging workup are keys to preventing distant metastasis. Identification of this rare sarcoma has become increasingly difficult with decreased ability to seek out non-coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) medical care. The pandemic has caused a widespread healthcare demand with providers reaching their full capacity causing care and resources to be shifted to the pandemic. We have experienced an 83-year-old male who significantly delayed to seek any medical attention for his scalp lesion for several months due to a combination of fear and decreased available appointments. Since the patient presented with a delayed scalp leiomyosarcoma, he required an extensive excision and flap reconstruction for the lesion. This case sheds light on the importance of weighing the risks and benefits associated with cancer management during the pandemic for both patients and healthcare providers. The healthcare system's response to the pandemic also played a role in this case as well, with shorter appointment times and decreased frequency of follow-up. As a result, the pandemic has had a catastrophic impact on the diagnostic pathway for cancer. This case report discusses the difficulties in diagnosing and treating a rare cancer such as scalp leiomyosarcoma amidst the global pandemic and the importance of telemedicine in improving future outcomes.

World J Oncol. 2021;12(4):132-136


Scalp leiomyosarcoma; COVID-19; Pandemic; Telemedicine

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