Bone Cancer: 8 Signs That Should Raise Alarm

Written by Henrik Rothen

Dec.05 - 2023 7:09 PM CET

8 Signs That Should Raise Alarm.

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The primary symptoms of bone cancer can be almost non-existent or not very specific at the onset of the disease, but knowing them enables timely consultation, detection, and initiation of appropriate treatment as early as possible.

Detecting primary bone cancer by recognizing the symptoms is crucial.

The most common form of this cancer is osteosarcoma, a rare and aggressive malignant tumor that often affects long bones like the knee, femur, tibia, or shoulder. Osteosarcoma accounts for 30% of primary bone cancer cases in adults.

Ewing's sarcoma, a rare malignant tumor that develops from mesenchymal cells, and chondrosarcoma, a malignant tumor of the cartilages, are the other two primary bone cancers.

According to the Canadian Cancer Society, there are four main symptoms of primary bone cancer:

  • Persistent bone or joint pain that intensifies during physical exertion, often more pronounced in the evening.

  • Swelling or a palpable mass on a bone.

  • Difficulty moving a limb or using it, for example, some patients may limp.

  • Bone fractures: bones break more easily as they are weakened by the tumor.

Additionally, there are four other less common and non-specific symptoms that could be warning signs:

  • Fatigue.

  • Sweating.

  • Fever.

  • Weight loss.

If you notice several of the eight symptoms mentioned in the article, talk to your doctor. They will conduct the necessary examinations to make a diagnosis.

In more than 80% of cases, in children, adolescents, and adults, the treatment of bone cancer primarily involves surgery to remove the tumor. Chemotherapy may be prescribed to the patient before or after the surgical intervention.