Sarcomas are bone and soft tissue cancers – which impact connective tissue (tendons) and muscles – and are a rare condition in children. They account for less than 3,000 new cases annually in the US., and account for approximately 11% of all tumors.
Advances in imaging and chemotherapy have dramatically increased the long-term survival of sarcoma patients. MRI has improved our ability to see the tumor and evaluate its response to chemotherapy. Chemotherapy and radiotherapy have resulted in an increased survival rate.
With preoperative chemotherapy and surgery the five-year survival rate for osteosarcoma and Ewing's sarcoma approaches 70 to 80%. Genetic advancements are still evolving, and will likely play a significant role in treatment in the near future.
The doctor will use X-rays and a MRI of the entire area, including the joint above and below the tumor. They may recommend a CT scan of the chest to view if there if there is cancer (metastatic lesions) or perform a bone scan to identify other conditions (skip lesions or other bony metastases). Your child may need a bone marrow biopsy to determine if there is soft tissue and Ewing’s sarcoma.
If a surgical amputation is necessary, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta doctors can provide many reconstruction options. Before any surgery is performed, your doctor will carefully explain and help you plan the best course for your child.
We will help you compare location, type, and surgical procedures. Our team of specialists will care for your child, including radiologists, pediatric pathologists, oncologists, prosthetists, physical therapists, social workers and surgeons.
Your child will have several options when it comes to tumor resection. This will depend on the tumor type, location, spread to other regions (metastasis), and response to chemotherapy. There are three main options: limb sparing, amputation or rotationplasty.