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Bone Cancer

What is Bone Cancer?

Bone cancer or bone sarcoma is caused by an abnormal and uncontrollable growth of the bone cells and cartilage. Bone cancer can develop in any bone in the body. Secondary or metastatic bone cancer originates from another part of your body but is spread to the bone. The condition affects people of all ages. 


What are the types of Bone Cancer?

The usual types of bone cancer that affect both children and young adults are osteosarcomas which affect the cells that form bone tissue. Ewing sarcoma is rare for adults, but can be common in children and young adults with growing bones. The condition has a high cure rate.

What are the symptoms of Bone Cancer?

Some people may not present with any symptoms at all until much later when the cancer has progressed. The main symptoms are extreme with persistent pain in bones or joints which does not improve even with pain relief medicines.

  • Bone fractures with minimal or no injury
  • Fever which is more common with Ewing sarcoma
  • Limping
  • Weight loss
  • Swelling or lump over the affected part of the bone or soft tissue

How is Bone Cancer diagnosed?

Physical Examination
Physical examination will be done to check for any swelling or lumps and movement on the affected arm, leg or joint.

Imaging Tests
Your doctor may order imaging scans such as X-rayCT scan, and MRI  to assess your condition. The bone scan is an outpatient procedure in the nuclear medicine department of a hospital. A small amount of radioactive dye will be injected into the veins and travels to the affected areas.

Laboratory Tests
A complete blood count will be done to evaluate your red and white blood cells and platelets. It is also used during treatment for bone cancer. During a bone marrow aspiration and biopsy, the doctor removes tissues or cells from the bone marrow so they can be tested in a lab. This test is used to see if cancer has spread to the bone marrow.

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