About Bone Cancer Treatment
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Like many cancers, bone cancer is also treated by a team of doctors and therapists called multidisciplinary team. Treatment options for brain cancer include surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy and biological therapy.
What are the treatment options for bone cancer?
Some cancers are treated with surgery or chemotherapy or a combination of both. Radiation therapy is used in cases where surgery is difficult. Biological therapy may also be used in some cancers in children and young adults.
- Surgery: Surgical treatment to remove bone cancer is the mainstay of bone cancer treatment. It can remove the cancer without amputation of the affected limb. Many times, removal of muscles or other surrounding tissue may be required. Surgical removal with reconstruction is done in cases where part of bone is removed or amputation is done. Rehabilitation with physical therapy follows amputation.
- Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy destroys cancer cells and prevents further cancer growth or recurrence. It is given into the blood stream via veins, either one drug or a combination is given in cycles. Sometimes, chemotherapy is given before surgery to shrink the cancer and helps easy removal.
- Radiotherapy: Radiotherapy uses high- energy x-rays or other particles to destroy bone cancer cells. It can be given as an internal beam or external beam radiation therapy. It can be used along with chemotherapy or alone, before or after surgery
- Biotherapy: Certain medications are targeted at specific cancer cells. They include monoclonal antibodies like denosumab.
What is the success rate of bone cancer treatment?
Chemotherapy increases the survival in bone cancer patients. Around 90% patients can be treated without the need for amputation.
Duration of procedure/surgery : Surgery lasts for 2- 3 hours depending on the cancer type and location in the bone
Days admitted : Stay in hospital usually takes 4-5 days
Anesthesia : Surgery is done under general anaesthesia
Risks : Risks due to anaesthesia, Haemorrhage, Amputation in certain bone cancers, Damage to nerves, Side effects due to chemotherapy like nausea, vomiting, hair loss, fatigue, loss of appetite etc., Side effects due to radiotherapy life skin irritation, stomach upset, fatigue etc.
After care : Regular follow up is required to identify any recurrence or side effects of treatment.
Learn more about Bone Cancer