Bone Tumor: Types and Treatment

bone tumor
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A tumor is an unusual mass of tissue that manifest when the cell grows uncontrollably and divide more than it should and doesn’t die when it should.

And as time passes, these abnormal tissues cause hindrances in the growth of healthy tissue.

In bone tumor cells present in bone divide unusually which forms a lump or mass of abnormal tissue.

There are two types of bone tumors: benign bone tumors and malignant bone tumors.

Benign bone tumors are not cancerous, they stay in the same place but can grow and compress healthy tissue around bone while malignant bone tumors are cancerous and can cause cancer to spread throughout the body.

Now, let’s talk about both types of brain tumors.

What are the Types of Benign Bone Tumor?

Following are the types of benign bone tumors:

Giant cell tumor: Giant cell tumors usually occur in adults and are found in the rounded end of the bone. These non-cancerous tumors are very rare.

Osteochondromas: According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS), osteochondromas is the most common benign bone tumor. This type of benign tumor can occur in both adolescents and teenagers and covers between 35 to 40 percent of all benign bone tumors.

Osteochondromas tumor is made up of bone and cartilage and grows near the growing ends of long bones such as legs and arms, and can affect the low end of the thigh bone (femur), the upper end of the lower leg bone (tibia), and the upper end of the arm bone (humerus).

Nonossifying fibroma unicameral: Nonossifying fibroma unicameral occurs mostly in children and adolescents and can form in the leg.

Enchondroma: Enchondroma benign bone tumor is part of a syndrome called Ollier’s and Mafucci’s syndrome. This tumor occurs in a person when they are only a child and persists in them as an adult also and can affect the hand, feet, and long bones of the arm and thigh.

Aneurysmal bone cyst: An aneurysmal bone cyst is a problem in blood vessels that begins in the bone marrow. This tumor can affect the growth plates of the bone.

Fibrous dysplasia: Fibrous dysplasia is a condition of a gene mutation that makes bones fibrous and vulnerable which can lead to a fracture.

Types of Malignant Bone Tumors

Following are the types of malignant bone tumors:

Osteosarcoma: Osteosarcoma is the second most common type of bone cancer and usually occurs in children and adolescents. This tumor forms around the shoulder, hip, or knee and then grows rapidly and spreads to other parts of the body. Osteosarcoma usually chose to spread on the areas where bones are actively growing such as the lower end of the thigh bone and the upper end of the lower leg bone.

Chondrosarcoma: Chondrosarcoma usually occurs in middle age people and older adults and develops around areas like the hip, shoulders, and pelvis.

Ewing sarcoma family of tumors (ESFTs): Ewing sarcoma family tumor usually occurs in adolescents and young adults but in some cases, it can also affect children of age 5 years. This bone cancer can be seen around the areas such as the backbone, ribs, upper arms, legs or long bones, and the skull.

Not only this but also ESFTs can forms in soft tissue like fat, muscles, and blood vessels.

According to NCI, in very rare cases African-American children can develop ESFTs and it is a high chance for males than females to develop this bone cancer.

Secondary bone cancer: When one talks about secondary bone cancer then it means that cancer forms somewhere else in the body and spread to the bone. This usually forms in adults.
Cancers that can affect bones are as follows:

  • Breast
  • Lung
  • Thyroid gland
  • Prostate
  • Kidney

Multiple myeloma: Multiple myeloma is the most common secondary type of bone cancer which forms as a tumor in the bone marrow and usually occurs in older adults.

Now let us proceed further in this article where we will talk about the symptoms of bone tumors.

Symptoms of Bone Tumor

Non-cancerous/benign none tumor symptoms:

  • Pain that increases with intensity and even hurt while you rest
  • Fractures or breaks due to weaker bones
  • Swelling or lump
  • Malignant bone tumor symptoms
  • Continuous pain in the bone that gets worse over time
  • Lump over bone
  • Swelling or redness which can make movement difficult
  • The weak bone can fracture more easily

Less common symptoms of the bone cancer

  • Fatigue
  • High temperature
  • Weight loss

What are the Causes of Bone Tumors?

It is still not known what can cause bone tumors but some possible causes such as genetics, injuries to the bone, and radiation treatment can form tumors around the bone.

Diagnosis of bone tumor: When you go to a doctor for a diagnosis of a bone tumor then they can suggest you do the following:

  • X-rays
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Computed tomography (CT). or positron emission tomography with CT (PET-CT)Bone scan
  • Biopsy

If your tumor is because of cancer then your doctor might do one of the following biopsies:

  • Open biopsy
  • Core biopsy
  • Aspiration biopsy

Treatments for Bone Tumor

How are benign bone tumors treated?

As we told you earlier benign bone tumors grow, stay the same, and then disappear eventually but you need to go to a doctor as they will keep an eye on this if they are changing or not.
Sometimes your doctors can also suggest you do the bone tumor surgery as it can latter might turn into malignant tumors.

How are malignant bone tumors treated?

If you have a malignant bone tumor ten it is a cause of concern but doesn’t worry too much as people with this type of bone tumor are improving after getting the treatment assigned for it.
The main treatment for malignant bone tumors is radiation, surgery, and chemotherapy.


In surgery treatment, your surgeon will carefully remove your entire tumor from the body while making sure that they don’t leave any cancer cells there.
There is also a surgery named limb salvage surgery in which your surgeon will replace cancerous bone from your body with a metal implant.

Radiation therapy

In this treatment high doses of X-rays are passed and which cause your tumor to shrink before surgery and kill cancerous cells.
Radiation therapy can also aid to reduce pain and the chance of bone fracture.


Chemotherapy uses anticancer drugs to kill growing cancer cells but it has some side effects also which are as follows:

  • Irritability
  • Hair loss
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Cryosurgery

In Cryosurgery treatment for bone cancer, cancer cells were killed by freezing them with the help of liquid nitrogen.


If you think that benign bone tumor doesn’t cause any problem then you are wrong because as time passes they can turn into cancer. So go and consult your doctor if you feel any kind of uneasiness around your bone.

People who had bone cancer can develop other cancer. So we recommend you always try to be in touch with your doctor even if your bone tumor is treated.

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