Orthopaedic Oncology Patient Information
Signs, Symptoms & Treatment Options
Orthopaedic Oncology, also known as Musculoskeletal Oncology, encompasses a broad spectrum of conditions involving tumors originating from various tissues within the body, including bones, muscles, nerves, tendons, and blood vessels. These tumors can range from non-cancerous (benign) to cancerous (malignant), with malignant tumors posing a significant threat to a patient’s life. In recent years, the incidence of these tumors has been on the rise, with sarcomas alone accounting for more than 20% of all solid malignant cancers diagnosed in pediatric patients.
Fortunately, the management of musculoskeletal tumors has witnessed substantial progress in recent decades. While amputation was often the sole treatment option in the past, modern treatments now prioritize preserving function through surgical resections and complex limb reconstructions. Early detection and prompt intervention play a pivotal role in enhancing the prospects of successful outcomes.
It is crucial, however, to recognize the warning signs associated with these tumors, which may encompass symptoms like pain, swelling, fractures, weakness or loss of limb function, and in advanced cases, weight loss and fatigue. If you experience any of these symptoms, seeking immediate medical attention is imperative.
The diagnostic process typically involves a thorough physical examination, blood tests, and various imaging procedures such as X-rays, ultrasounds, MRIs, or CT scans. Treatment options can encompass surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy, with rehabilitation playing a vital role in the recovery journey.
Regular follow-up appointments are also essential to monitor for potential metastases or recurrence, as these may necessitate further medical intervention. By raising awareness about the symptoms, signs, and available treatment options, we aim to improve the outcomes and quality of life for individuals dealing with musculoskeletal oncology disorders.