Living with Bone Cancer
Bone cancer is a rare cancer that affects both adults and children. It is distinguished as cancer that begins in the bone cells themselves, as opposed to bone marrow (leukemia), or metastatic cancer that has spread from elsewhere in the body. Chondrosarcomas develop in cartilage cells and are most common in adults. Osteosarcomas develop in the bone cells and are more common in children. Survival rates for bone cancer vary widely depending on type and stage, but the average five-year survival rate is approximately 70%.
Risk factors for bone cancer also vary widely but are often associated with other diseases, such as Rothmund-Thomson syndrome; other disease treatments, such as radiation for other cancers; and age. Symptoms of bone cancer include pain, swelling, and possibly a lump in the area of the tumor. The stages of bone cancer range from I to IV depending on tumor size and the extent to which it has spread. The most common treatment for bone cancer is surgery. Most bone cancers do not respond strongly to radiation treatments, though they are occasionally used in conjunction with surgical treatment.
For more information on bone cancer, read the American Cancer Society's detailed guide.
Don't forget to view our Beginner's Guide to Cancer.
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