Osteosarcoma is a type of bone cancer that occurs in the cells that creates the bones, typically found in teenagers and young children, although, it may also show in younger or older people. It commonly occurs in the long bones like legs or sometimes the arms, but any bone in the body may have it as well.
Treatment for osteosarcoma is based on the size, the location where it begun, the type and grade of osteosarcoma and if the cancer has spread to other areas of the body. Chemotherapy, surgery and, sometimes, radiation therapy are the common treatment options for osteosarcoma.
The latest technologies in osteosarcoma treatment has helped with its prognosis. Once it has been treated, it should still be regularly checked because there may be a tendency for the effects of aggressive treatment to show at a later time.


The following signs and symptoms may occur with osteosarcoma:

  • Bone fracture or injury with no cause
  • Swollen area near a bone
  • Pain in the bone or joint

If you constantly notice this signs and symptoms on your child and it worries you, consult a doctor. There are a lot of common diseases such as sports injuries that has the same symptoms with osteosarcoma.


The cause of osteosarcoma is unknown. This type of cancer begins when the cells that creates the bone undergo an unusual change.
Osteosarcoma starts with the changes in the DNA of the cells of the bone making them produce more bone uncontrollably and later on creates a tumor. This tumor is composed of abnormal cells that can damage other nearby tissues that are healthy or break and spread to other areas of the body (metastasis).

Risk factors

The following are the risk factors that may lead to osteosarcoma:

  • Hereditary: Having hereditary disorders such as retinoblastoma, Werner syndrome, Bloom syndrome, Li-Fraumeni syndrome and Rothmund-Thomson syndrome.
  • Other diseases: Having Paget’s disease or fibrous dysplasia which are other types of bone disorder.
  • Radiation: Undergoing radiation treatment in the past.