By: Lindsey Meyer
Osteosarcoma is a cancerous "malignant" bone tumor that usually develops in teenagers and It occurs when a teen is growing rapidly.
The most comman symptoms of Osteosarcoma are pain and swelling in a childs arm or leg. It occurs most often in the longer bones of the body such as above or below the knee or in the upper arm near the shoulder.
The exact cause of osteosarcoma is not known, but it is believed to be due to multiple imaging studies of the tumor and sites of possible metastasis.
When trying to figure out the best course of treatment, doctors often use a simple system that divides osteosarcomas into 2 groups localized and metastatic.
Combination therapy uses more than one type of chemo at a time and is commonly used for the treatment of osteosarcoma. Chemo is critical for treating osteosarcoma and in patients who had their tumor removed by surgery but did not receive chemotherapy, 80% developed new disease in the lungs and other bones.
When treated appropriately, patients with high grade osteosarcoma in one location have a survival rate of about 70%, and the survival rate is higher for patients with low grade tumors, and it is lower for those whose disease has spread throughout the body, and for those whose tumors have a poor response to chemotherapy.