Understanding Osteosarcoma – Osteosarcoma is one type of cancer that develops in the bone. This cancer belongs to the serious musculoskeletal cancer category and can cause death. Osteosarcoma can metastasize or spread to the lung organ.
This cancer usually affects children and young adults, aged 10-30 years. Among these age ranges, adolescents are most often affected by osteosarcoma.
The occurrence of osteosarcoma according to WHO appears in about 4-5 per 1,000,000 population. Osteosarcoma is also more common in men than women with a ratio of 3: 2.


Diagnosis Of Osteosarcoma

Determination of osteosarcoma diagnosis is determined by medical interview, physical examination, and investigation. On physical examination, it is likely to encounter the presence of localized pain that weighs, lumps in certain areas, easy fractures (pathological fracture), and weight loss.
The initial investigation that can be done is a radiological examination. On examination of plain photographs, bones can be seen with lesions or lytic lesions of moth-eaten, blastic lesions, cortical destruction, aggressive periosteal-type reactions (Codman’s triangle, sunburst, hair on end), soft tissue mass, and matrix formation.
A CT scan and MRI scan can also be performed to give a more detailed picture of the tissue around the bone. A biopsy is a diagnostic step for osteosarcoma to know for certain types of osteosarcoma cells.

Symptoms Of Osteosarcoma

Those who suffer from osteosarcoma may complain of a painful lump in certain parts of the body. Other symptoms of osteosarcoma are:

  • The mass of the growing body part
  • Pain in tumor
  • Fractures occur in the tumor area (pathologic fracture)
  • Limitations of gestures
  • Weight loss
  • Anemia

Treatment Of Osteosarcoma

Treatment of osteosarcoma may be surgical therapy, as well as chemotherapy with or without radiotherapy. The right therapeutic choice for this disease also requires the discussion of multi-disciplinary doctors for the most optimal therapy.
Giving chemotherapy is generally intended to control the spread and facilitate surgery (amputation). Surgery is the main therapy of osteosarcoma through the principle of resection by maintaining body functions as much as possible.
Surgery can be done with the preceding method of chemotherapy (neoadjuvant chemotherapy). Neoadjuvant chemotherapy can be done to reduce tumor size and facilitate surgery. Some of the chemotherapy regimen options are with cisplatin and doxorubicin, or docetaxel and gemcitabine.
Surgical therapy is performed on tumors without neurovascular involvement. After surgery, the patient can undergo chemotherapy again. In osteosarcoma, radiotherapy plays a relatively small role because this type of cancer is not sensitive to radiotherapy. However, radiotherapy measures may be considered in certain tumor types or in bone tumors with locations that are difficult to reach by surgery.

Cause Of Osteosarcoma

Osteosarcoma is a condition of malignancy with a multifactorial cause. This type of cancer can be caused by several factors, such as

  • Chemical compounds. There are several types of chemical compounds associated with the occurrence of osteosarcomas, such as anthracyclines and pencil compounds. These various compounds are thought to cause genetic changes.
  • Rous sarcoma virus containing the V-Src gene is a type of proto-oncogene virus or virus that can cause malignancy.
  • This cause is associated with an increased incidence of secondary sarcomas in those who have received radiation for cancer therapy.
  • This is an incidence of tumor suppressor gene loss (or retinoblastoma / RB gene). Mutation P53 (tumor suppressor gene) is also associated with osteosarcoma.


Prevention Of Osteosarcoma

Prevention of bone cancer can be done by understanding the process of cancer itself. Cancer usually results from carcinogens and free radicals in the body. Therefore we can do prevention by applying a healthy lifestyle such as avoiding smoking habits, consuming alcohol, and foods that contain lots of fat and carcinogenic substances. Get used to eating foods and drinks that contain antioxidants and other essential nutrients, and do regular health checks.