Definition

What are bone tumors?

Bone tumors happen when cells in bone develop uncontrollably, forming a mass of tissue. This mass is called a tumor.

Most bone tumors are actually benign. They are not cancerous and they can’t spread. However, that doesn’t mean they won’t do harm to your bones. They can weaken the affected area and make it more vulnerable to collision.

Another type of bone tumors is malignant. They are cancer. They can spread to throughout your body and damage normal bone tissue.

How common is bone tumors?

This health condition is extremely common. It can affect patients at any age. It can be managed by reducing your risk factors. Please discuss with your doctor for further information.

Symptoms

What are the symptoms of bone tumors?

There are many symptoms of bone tumors, such as:

  • A peculiar mass of tissue growing somewhere on the body.
  • You sweat at night.
  • You have a fever.
  • Your pain becomes constant and more severe from time to time.

With benign bone tumors, you may not feel any pain at all. You may not know it’s there unless an imaging scan reveals it. Since it’s benign, it doesn’t necessarily do harm to your body. If it does, then treatments are required.

When should I see my doctor?

If you have any signs or symptoms listed above or have any questions, please consult with your doctor. Everyone’s body acts differently. It is always best to discuss with your doctor what is best for your situation.

Causes

What are the causes of bone tumors?

Till this day, people haven’t known exactly what causes bone tumors. Oftentimes, a part of the body develops so fast that causes malfunctions in the development process, which leads to a potential tumor. Some other are indirect causes. It means bone tumors are caused as a consequence of radiation treatment (overdose), injuries to the bones (as the undiscovered tumor may have weakened that part of the bones, therefore injuries reveal the tumor), or genetics.

There are also anticancer drugs used with children that could potentially grow a bone tumor. Furthermore, metastasis (or secondary bone cancer) could be the culprit.

 

Risk factors

What increases my risk for bone tumors?

From children, adolescents to adults, older people, mostly everyone are likelihood to have a bone tumor. Fortunately, there is only 1% of having a malignant primary bone cancer which originates from the bone itself. The rest is benign. However, people with other cancer in the body are at higher risk of having a malignant bone cancer (metastasis).

Diagnosis & treatment

The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. ALWAYS consult with your doctor for more information.

How are bone tumors diagnosed?

You will be asked about your family medical history. Then, a range of mini tests is conducted to determine if you have the tumor or not. You will do a physical exam on the suspected area, then doctor will check your bone tenderness and your body motion. Then, he will run several tests like blood and urine tests (to diagnose if there is any bone growing strangely), imaging tests (X-ray, MRI or a PET), or biopsies (to examine a piece of tissue in the affected area).

How are bone tumors treated?

With benign bone tumors, the tumors can grow and disappear (happens to most children on their way of growing up). If there are any signs that indicate the tumor could aggressively grow and turn into a malignant one, then surgery is needed. Otherwise, the periodical visit to the doctor is recommended. There are also medications to help ease the tumors.

However, malignant tumors are different. If left untreated, complications are likely to occur. Treatment will depend on how far cancer has come. Cancer cells that are currently staying in the bone tumor are at a localized stage. The ones that have spread to other areas are at a metastasis stage (more serious). Often, treatments will involve surgery to take out cancer. A metallic implant (prosthesis) is then placed to the removed bone for normalized motions. If cancer has been more severe, then amputation may be the choice. Along with surgery, radiation therapy could also help by shrinking the tumors and killing the cancer cells as well as chemotherapy.

 

Lifestyle changes & home remedies

What are some lifestyle changes or home remedies that can help me manage bone tumors?

The following lifestyles and home remedies might help you cope with bone tumors:

  • Frequent visits to the doctor post-surgery are recommended. Also, avoid doing extreme exercise that can hurt your bones.
  • Your recovery rate depends on the type of tumors, of course, the malignant ones will take more time.
  • You may also join a cancer group as it is known to be helpful.

If you have any questions, please consult with your doctor to better understand the best solution for you.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnose or treatment.

 

Sources

Review Date: January 4, 2017 | Last Modified: January 4, 2017

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