Synovial sarcoma occurs around the large joints, usually that of the knee, but it does not usually affect the fluid and synovial tissue inside the joint. It is a slow-growing type of cancer that is not common and is usually found in young adults (between 15 to 40 years old).
A painful or tender lump may be the first sign of synovial sarcoma. It may occur anywhere in the body but most commonly found in the throat, arms and legs.
Synovial sarcoma may be asymptomatic but these symptoms may occur as the tumor grows:
- A swelling or lump that can be easily seen
- Pain due to nerve or muscle compression
Consult a doctor if you notice the following:
- A lump (big or small) inside the muscle
- A painful lump or a lump that has gotten bigger
- A lump that came back even after removal
The cause of synovial sarcoma is unknow accoding to researchers but it may be due to chromosomal changes.These changes occur when chomosomes are sometimes broken and when they connected again, their sequencing are disrupted. Some genes may be put back on a spot where they do not actually belong. The SYT gene has been puzzled in the wrong spot in synovial sarcoma. This leads to a genetic mutation and the body develops abnormalities causing synovial sarcoma.
These are the risk factors which can cause the development of a sarcoma:
- Hereditary factor. Having syndromes that are inherited such as retinoblastoma, Li-Fraumeni syndrome, familial adenomatous polyposis, neurofibromatosis, tuberous sclerosis and Werner syndrome increases that chance of acquiring a sarcoma.
- Exposure to chemical. Chemicals such as arsenic, dioxin and herbicides can lead to a sarcoma.
- Exposure to radiation. If you have had a radiation treatment for cancer in the past, this may also be a factor of having a sarcoma.