J Natl Compr Canc Netw 2013 Jun;11(6):726-31
Department of Neurological Surgery, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia 22908, USA.
Chordoma is a primary bone cancer arising on the midline from the skull base to the sacrum. Diagnosis is often delayed because of insidious onset and nonspecific symptoms. Chordomas appear histologically low-grade but are highly invasive and often recur locally. Management centers primarily on radical en bloc surgical resection when possible. Radiation therapy using protons and/or photons is often necessary because complete resection is seldom possible due to critical location and invasion of the cancer cells into surrounding structures. No approved medical therapy exists. The high rate of recurrence is reflected by a median survival of 6 to 7 years. This article reviews the clinical management of chordoma and discusses ongoing research in the field.