Bone cancer

Bone cancer

Bone cancer is a malignancy that forms in the bone cells which includes the primary and secondary types of bone cancer

the test

Risk factors and possible causes

Risk factors increases the chances for getting bone cancer which include genetic disorders, osteosarcoma, chondrosarcoma, chordoma, paget disease,multiple enchondromatosis, radiation, transplantation of bone marrow and injuries. However, the presence of a risk factor is not a direct implication that the individual will have the disease. Apparently, majority of bone cancer victims do not have (Bone Cancer Home Page). An insignificant bone cancer cases arise from mutation defects in some genes and this implies a risk factor of genetic disorders among others.

Statistics on bone cancer

About 2,570 individual have been positively diagnosed of bone cancer according the data of American Cancer Society. Out of this figure, it was estimated that about 1,200 would succumb to death due to bone cancer. Further statics indicated that, 38 years was median age of bone cancer diagnosed cases and most people affected died at the age of 59. The table below indicates bone cancer victim in percentage.



















The figure below shows mortality rates due to bone cancer based on race.





All Races

0.5 / 100,000

0.4 / 100,000


0.6 /100,000

0.4 /100,000

African Americans

0.6 / 100,000

0.3 /100,000

Asian/Pacific Islander

0.3 /100,000

0.2/ 100,000


0.5/ 100,000

0.3  / 100,000

Signs and symptoms

Pain is the most conspicuous symptom associated with bone cancer but there are other varied symptoms based on location and malignant size. Tumors may appear around joints resulting to tenderness and swelling of affected region. Bones become weak and the victim develops impaired movement and may lead to fracture. Other victims may develop symptoms of fever, anemia, fatigue as well as loss of weight. It is however important to consult a medical professional since the symptoms may not be sure cancer symptoms and other conditions with less severity may also manifest the presence of cancer.

Detection, diagnosis and prognosis

Diagnosis for bone cancer starts with the medical history of the victim and the family which is then followed by a medical examination. Blood test may be imperative for analysis of the level of alkaline phosphatase enzyme, which indicates the level of activity of the bone cells. The enzyme is in high levels for growing children, broken bone or tumor.

X-rays can also be conducted which indicate exact location, shape as well as size of tumor. An indication that a tumor is cancer after x-ray may lead to a recommendation of special imaging including angiogram, MRI or a CAT scan. Biopsy may also be needed to ascertain the presence of cancer and it involves extracting some sample tissue from the tumor.

Type of bone cancer

The most common type of bone is the multiple Myeloma affecting the bone marrow and affects 5-7 individuals in every 100, 000 people per year. Most victims are in the age bracket of 50-70 years. Osteosarcoma follows in prevalence affecting every 2-3 individuals in every one million individuals yearly. Most victims are teenagers and its target includes the shoulder, knee as well as the hip. Ewing’s Sarcoma is also common among people of 5-20 years and affects the ribs, legs, pelvis, the upper arm and the lower leg. Another type of bone cancer is the Chondrosarcoma affecting people of 40-70 years (Bone Cancer: MedlinePlus).


Stages of bone cancer and how it metastases

According to Enneking system, 3 stages are known as indicated below



Stage 1

Low grade cancer

Stage 2

High grade cancer

Stage 3

Cancer spread to other body parts (metastasized)

TNM system categorizes cancer on tumor size resulting to 4 stages as indicated below

Stage 1

Low grade cancer

Stage 2

High grade cancer

Stage 3

Multiple cancer areas

Stage 4

Cancer spread to other body parts e.g. lungs

The occurrence of metastases means that cancer which develops in multiple body parts may proliferate beyond a single site hence invading other body parts


Common treatment for cancer includes chemotherapy, surgery, radiation therapy and cryosurgery. Surgery is the most common treatment approach. Amputation, radiation and chemotherapy are also widely applied in bone cancer treatment.

Other treatment options are also applicable based on several factors such as tumor location, the size of malignant, location, age of the victim, health status and the stage of tumor

Complementary and alternative therapy

Comprehensive plan of treatment requires complementary and alternative therapy which include intake of herbs as well as supplements and they should be revealed to health care provider. Some of the supplements may affect conventional therapies and revealing them the care provider is important (Bone cancer).

Nutrition and supplements

Food suspected to cause allergies should be eliminated from the diet and it is important to involve the care provider to test the food for potential allergies. Eating of antioxidant foods such as fruits is encouraged. Refined foods and stimulants such caffeine, alcohol and tobacco should be avoided. Use of healthy cooking fats and lean meat is encouraged.

Nutritional deficiency may be addressed by use of supplements Probiotic supplement Omega-3 fatty acids and Melatonin

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