(Cartilage Cancer; Cancer of the Cartilage)
by Diana Kohnle
Chondrosarcoma is a type of cancer. It grows in cartilage cells in the body. Cartilage is the connective tissue. Most bones are created from cartilage.
This cancer is typically found in the cartilage cells of the femur, arm, pelvis, knee, and spine. Rarely, the ribs and other areas may also be affected.
Cancer occurs when cells in the body divide without control or order. If cells keep dividing uncontrollably, a mass of tissue forms. This is called a growth or tumor. The term cancer refers to malignant tumors. They can invade nearby tissue and spread to other parts of the body.
Certain factors seem to be common among individuals who develop chondrosarcoma, these include:
Symptoms will vary from person to person. The location and severity of the tumor will affect them. The most common symptoms of chondrosarcoma include:
Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done.
Tests may include the following:
Treatment can vary based on your age, overall health, and stage of the disease. Talk with your doctor about the best plan for you. Treatment options include:
Surgery may be used to remove the tumor. Physical therapy may be used to help the area heal after surgery.
High energy x-rays may be used to target and kill cancer cells.
Drugs that kill tumor cells may be used. The use of chemotherapy may depend on the type of chondrosarcoma that you have.
The cause of chondrosarcoma is not fully understood. There are no known preventive steps for this condition.
Children's Hospital Boston
National Cancer Institute
BC Cancer Agency
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DeGroot H. Chondrosarcoma. Bonetumor.org website. Available at: http://www.bonetumor.org/tumors/pages/page39.html . Accessed January 31, 2013.
What is chondrosarcoma? The Liddy Shriver Sarcoma Initiative website. Available at: http://sarcomahelp.org/chondrosarcoma.html . Updated October 2012. Accessed January 31, 2013.
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Last reviewed September 2012 by Igor Puzanov, MD