What is Osteosarcoma?
Osteosarcoma is a type of bone cancer that begins in the cells that form bones.
Most often found in the long bones. Most commonly in the legs but sometime in the arms.Very rarely occurs in soft tissue outside the bone.
What are the causes and risks?
Exact cause is unknown. But it is believed to be due to DNA mutation inside bone cells, either inherited or acquired after birth.
- Age: teenegers who are having a growth spurt are most likely to get it
- Gender: -males more often than females
- Height: -taller kids have higher risk
- Treatment history: -radiation therapy for other types of cancer or cancer medicines called alkylating agents
- Health conditions tied to your age
Where is it found?
Most often happens at the end of long bones, where bone grows fastest.
- Most tumors start around the knee, in either the lower part of the thigh bone or the upper part of the shinbone.
- Also may grow in the upper arm bone close to the shoulder
- But osteosarcoma can happen in any bone include pelvis, shoulder and skulls.
- High grade sarcoma: – Fastest growing type. Most osteosarcoma in children and teens are high grade.
Most often kinds are
- Osteoblastic osteosarcoma
- Chondroblastic osteosarcoma
- Fibroblastic osteosarcoma
- Low grade osteosarcoma: – This types grows slowly
- Para osteal
- Intramedullary or intraosseous well differentiated osteosarcoma
- Intermediate grade osteosarcoma: – This is in between high and low grade tumors.
Who is at greatest risk of osteosarcoma?
The risk of osteosarcoma is highest for those between the age of 10 and 30 especially during the teenage growth spurt.This suggest these may be a link between rapid bone growth and risk of tumor formation. Risk grows down in middle age, but raise again in older adults (over the age of 60)
What are the symptoms of osteosarcoma?
- Bone pain or joint pain or soreness. This pain may come and go for a month
- Swelling or lump around the bones or the ends of the bones
- Bone injury or bone break without a clear reason
- Pain at night
- Pain after exercise
- Swelling or redness at the site of tumor
- Increased pain with lifting
- Limited movements
How is osteosarcoma diagnosed?
A disease is diagnosed by biopsy but bone scan , CT, MRI and PET CT help in proper staging. Biopsy should be done by expert team.
- A bone scan
- Computerized tomography (CT)
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Positron emission tomography (PET)
- Needle biopsy
- Surgical biopsy
What are the treatment options?
- Chemotherapy ,often recommend before the surgery (neo adjuvant therapy)
- Surgery to take out the tumor
Usually successful when the disease is diagnosed early before it can spread
- Surgery to remove the affected limb (amputation)
- Surgery to remove the lower portion of the leg (rotationplasty)
- Radiation therapy: -might be an option in certain situation, such as when surgery is not possible or surgeon can’t remove all of the cancer during an operation
- Chemotherapy after surgery is called adjuvant chemotherapy.