Cancer

Chondrosarcoma

Description

Chondrosarcoma is a kind of sarcoma that has an impact on the bones and joints. It is an uncommon cancer that accounts for about 20 percent of the total bone tumour cases and is diagnosed in about 600 patients every year in the United States of America. Chondrosarcoma normally affects adults between the age of 20 and 60 years old, and it is more commonly seen in men.

Types of Chondrosarcoma

The different types of chondrosarcoma are named on the basis of the manner in which they look under the microscope. They are Conventional Chondrosarcoma, Clear cell chondrosarcoma, myxoid chondrosarcoma, Mesenchymal Chondrosarcoma and Dedifferentiated Chondrosarcoma.

Symptoms and Causes

 The disease generally starts in the bones of the arms, legs or pelvis, but it can be also found in other body parts that are comprised of cartilage.  The symptoms of chondrosarcoma contain

  • Large mass of the affected bone.
  • Pain that increases gradually over time and becomes worse at night.
  • Local swelling.
  • Pressure build-up around the mass.

The particular cause of chondrosarcoma is not identified. There may be a genetic or chromosomal constituent that makes certain people more open to this type of malignancy.

People with chondrosarcoma generally do not feel sick and some patients may experience pain, swelling or movement that is limited. A person who has undergone radiation therapy may also suffer from this disease.

Diagnosis

A bone tumour is frequently discovered on x-ray after a physical examination. It can be hard to tell the difference between a benign bone tumour and chondrosarcoma on x-ray. Added tests, containing a bone scan, CT scan, MRI and PET scan, can provide more information about the tumour.

Eventually, biopsy of the tumour is the only way to make a definite diagnosis of chondrosarcoma. After the biopsy technique, a pathologist watches the tumour cells underneath the microscope to determine the exact cause. Doctors make use of the outcomes of the biopsy to cultivate a patient's treatment plan.

Treatment

Surgery: The preferred treatment of chondrosarcoma is the entire surgical removal of the tumour along with a widespread margin of healthy tissue. Limb salvage surgery is a common treatment technique that is used to treat chondrosarcoma.

Chemotherapy: It refers to the use of anti-cancer drugs, which eliminates cancel cells from the affected area.

Radiation therapy: Radiotherapy involves using high dose of energy waves to cure the cancerous cells.

Physical therapy: This treatment aids in recovering the strength after the surgical treatment.

Complications

The surgical treatment of chondrosarcoma can include major surgery and this can affect patient’s long-term mobility. Late effects are problems from cancer treatments such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy that may show up weeks or months after treatment has finished. Chemotherapy drugs target cancer cells, but they can also harm the organs and kill healthy cells. In some patients, the cancer returns after treatment. This can be in the same bone or area as the original cancer (local relapse) or in a different place, often in the lungs (metastasis). If the cancer returns it will require further treatment.

Post Operative Care                                                       

After finishing treatment, chondrosarcoma patients need follow-up care. Outpatient hospital visits will be needed on a daily basis during the initial few years after treatment, and then probably yearly after that. Follow up care with an orthopaedic surgeon is also beneficial to look out for surgery-related complications and to make sure the limb is working well.