Everything You Need to Know About Bone Cancer and Its Treatment
: Get update with facts about bone cancer and treatment methods
Weak bones and painful joints can sometimes be symptoms of bone cancer. Bone cancer occurs when the cells within the bones start multiplying without any control. The multiplied cells infect the bone and weaken them, causing fractures. If these cells enter the bloodstream, they can reach other organs and multiply there, too. The cancerous cells can also destroy the cortex.
While no one yet knows the exact cause of bone cancer, doctors have been successful in identifying the risk factors which increase the possibility of getting this disease as well as the methods for bone cancer treatment.
The risk factors are as follows:
1. People with genetic syndromes like retinoblastoma, etc.
2. Older people with benign bone tumors (a condition called Paget's disease)
3. People exposed to chemotherapy or radiation.
TYPES OF BONE CANCERS
There are four types of bone cancers:
It is the most common type of bone cancer found, especially in young children. It usually starts at the tips of long bones and affects their outer layers made up of hard tissues.
2. Ewing Sarcoma
On the contrary, Ewing sarcoma affects the soft tissues encapsulating the bones or, in worst cases, might even harm the bone directly.
It does not begin in the bones, but in the subchondral tissue which connects various bones. Pelvis, thighs, and shoulders are the most affected areas by this type of cancer.
It is an extremely uncommon type of bone cancer that begins in the spinal cord. The tumors begin to form at the base of the spine and the skull.
SYMPTOMS OF BONE CANCER
The common symptoms of any bone cancer are:
1. Pain in the joints or bones
2. Swelling or formation of hard mass along the skin covering the bones
3. Persistent or recurring fractures
5. Weight Loss
TREATMENT METHODS OF BONE CANCER
Bone cancer if diagnosed at early stages, can easily be treated through the following methods:
In this type of process, the surgeons remove the entire mass infected with cancer. The tissue removed has negative margins, which means its edges are free of all the cancerous cells.
It is one of the most successful bone cancer treatment methods.
By using certain anti-cancer drugs and inducing them into the patient's body, Ewing sarcoma or osteosarcoma can be treated.
3. Radiation Therapy
The affected area is exposed to high-energy X-rays, which kills the cancer cells. It can be used for any bone cancers and is highly successful in case some cancerous part remains even after surgery.
Another method is introducing liquid nitrogen in the body to freeze and kill the tumor cells.
5. Targeted Therapy
The procedure involves the usage of a specific drug that interacts with a particular molecule, which is responsible for the uncontrolled growth of cells. Patients undergo this therapy when the tumor is large.
Bone cancer is a rare disease and constitutes less than 1% of all types of cancers. But one shouldn't worry since the diagnosis, and the treatment is extensively available at all cancer-treatment centers. All a person needs to do is watch out for symptoms, especially the people with the risk factors mentioned above.