Fibrosarcoma, sometimes called fibroblastic sarcoma, is a rare malignant tumor that appears in fibrous connective tissue of the bone, usually found in males between 30-50 years of age.
This condition most commonly appears in the soft tissue anywhere in the body, but is also commonly found in the long and/or flat bones of the lower extremities, such as the femur, mandible, and tibia.
Fibrosarcomas comprise 10 percent of musculoskeletal sarcomas and account for 5 percent of bone cancers overall. Approximately 1 in every 2 million people is diagnosed with fibrosarcoma.
Signs & Symptoms
Symptoms can vary from patient to patient depending on the area of the body affected. The most common symptoms can include:
- Bone pain and/or tenderness
- Bone and tissue swelling
- Arm pain and/or tenderness
- Leg pain
Diagnosis & Treatment
Usually a scan is performed to determine the presence of abnormal cells. Any of these scans may be ordered:
- Blood scan: If the patient does have fibrosarcoma, their alkaline or calcium levels in the blood may be unusually high.
- Bone x-rays: An x-ray can detect the presence of a bone tumor.
- Bone biopsy: A sample of bone cells is collected and examined under a microscope to determine the presence of malignant cells. This is the only way to make a definitive cancer diagnosis.
- Diagnostic imaging: CT or CAT scans or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans can provide detail of the soft tissue and show any abnormalities in the bone. These scans can help to determine the location and size of the tumor.
The most common forms of treatment are chemotherapy, radiation, and possibly surgery to remove any malignant cells. In severe cases, a bone marrow transplant may be needed.
A patients’ prognosis depends on the size, location, and stage of the tumor. If caught and treated early enough, a patient has a 60 percent chance of a 5-year survival rate from the time of diagnosis. Children diagnosed with fibrosarcoma have an excellent prognosis, especially when they are treated with a combination of neoadjuvant (treatment given before the primary treatment) and adjuvant (primary) therapies.