Bone Cancer: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

According to the research reports of the National Cancer institute of USA, almost 1460 people died of bone cancer in 2010. Even more shockingly, there was a significant rise in number of new cases reported with the institute. There have been 2650 such new bone cancer cases which have been recorded. Not to mention the unreported cases or cases in which patients do not know if they are suffering from cancer.

Cancer which is a deadly disease in itself is caused due to uncontrolled growth of body cells that was initially meant to replace old and dying cells. A cancer is named by the area it has affected. So a bone cancer may be cancerous growth of bone cells that may lead to formation of a tumor or dis-formation of a bone. It may also be noted that cancer can reach to bones from other cancer affected areas of the body. The most common types of cancer triggering a bone cancer are lung and breast cancer. In certain extreme cases, a patient may pick up bone cancer from blood cancer.

Types of Bone Cancer

Bone cancer can be classified into two major types. This classification is done on the basis of origination of cancer and growth of cancer cells from an affected area.Secondary Cancer from other parts of the body: Bone cancer can be caused due to traveling of cancer cells from an affected body part to the bones via body fluids such as blood or bone marrow. In fact more than ninety percent of cases are caused due to this reason only.Primary Cancer originating from bones: A very minor percentage of bone cancer patients actually suffer from a bone cancer that has originated from their bones. This is relatively easier to treat as the cancerous cells are restricted to a smaller area.Causes of Bone Cancer

While the actual cause of cancer is unknown, it is believed that it is due to an uncontrolled growth of cells. The growth may be triggered by any of the following reasons:Radiation/Toxic Substances – Being subjected to radiation or harmful substances can also trigger cancerous growth of cells. Watch workers in 19th century were affected by bone cancer due to involvement of uranium in their work.Genetic mutations – Mutation can be either due to inherent factors present in one’s DNA or may be due to external factors. They cause the body cells to grow rapidly and be different from cells of a normal human being.Reaction of medicines – Certain medicines may not perform as expected causing side effects which could lead to formation of tumors. These tumors may later develop cancer.Symptoms of Bone Cancer

Common symptoms of bone cancer include:Unbearable pain in the boneOccasional swelling and formation of hard massWorsening of pain during an activity or at night while sleepingFormation of tumors/ Disfiguration of bonesTreatment of Bone Cancer

While medicines are believed to relieve the patient, no medicine can completely stop the growth of cancerous cells. They only reduce the cell growth or might slow down the process with prolonged use of medication.

If detected in an early stage, one can also opt for a surgery in which doctors remove the part of the body in which cancer cells are multiplying. This also does not ensure permanent remedy for cancer but can be greatly beneficial. In severe cases, even after surgery, a patient may need to get rid of such cells via chemotherapy which kills all such cells. This is done with the help of radio waves that can penetrate the body.

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