Have you or a loved one been diagnosed with chondrosarcoma? If so, consider this a helpful guide to the disease, designed to give you a practical knowledge of chondrosarcoma so that you can have an informed discussion with your medical provider about treatment and prognosis.
In addition, we have included a list of reasons that you might want to pursue medical malpractice or tort actions if you believe that your chondrosarcoma diagnosis was mishandled by medical professionals.
What is Chondrosarcoma?
A sarcoma is a malignant (or cancerous) tumor of connective tissue. Chondrosarcoma is a specific kind of this cancer that is located in your bones and joints. Sarcomas themselves are rare, accounting for less than one percent of cancer diagnoses, and chondrosarcoma is therefore even rarer.
The most common chondrosarcoma patients are adult men between the ages of 20 and 60 (although chondrosarcoma can also affect women). Chondrosarcoma typically begins in the arms, legs or pelvis of a patient, although it can be found in any cartilage, a firm, whitish, flexible connective tissue that can be found in places like the nose and outsides of the ears.
Chondrosarcoma can strike bones that are otherwise healthy or have benign tumors on them.
There is a variety of subtypes of chondrosarcoma. Some of these types are:
- Clear cell
What Causes Chondrosarcoma?
Like many other types of cancers, the exact cause of chondrosarcoma is unknown. However, doctors and researchers have noticed that people with certain medical conditions are at an increased risk for chondrosarcoma. According to the Liddy Shriver Sarcoma Initiative, these conditions include:
- Ollier’s Disease
- Maffucci Syndrome
- Multiple Hereditary Exotoses
- Wilms’ Tumor
- Paget’s disease
- Diseases in children that required chemotherapy and/or radiation treatment
What Are the Symptoms of Chondrosarcoma?
The answers here are mixed. Typically, cancers with undetectable symptoms have poor prognoses, as they have already metastasized before they are located.
Chondrosarcoma is one of these cancers. It rarely makes patients feel sick and mostly presents itself as a boney bump, which of course could be a number of other benign and/or temporary conditions. Ultimately, patients typically notice chondrosarcoma after experiencing pain, swelling or limited movement caused by the tumor.
However, there is good news. Most chondrosarcomas are low-grade tumors that tend to stay in place and not metastasize. The two exceptions to this rule are dedifferentiated and mesenchymal chondrosarcomas, which are high-grade tumors that tend to spread aggressively.
How is Chondrosarcoma Treated?
As with most sarcomas, surgery with complete removal and a wide surgical margin is recommended to eliminate the tumor(s) and prevent local recurrence. In addition, chemotherapy and/or radiation are sometimes used as a supplement. Amputation is used only occasionally and only for advanced or recurrent cases.
Do You Have a Medical Malpractice Claims
Did your doctor miss signs of chondrosarcoma? Are you now left with poor or no treatment options? Did your surgeon botch your chondrosarcoma operation, failing to combat the disease as aggressively as was possible? Alternatively, do you believe that your doctor(s) recommended an unwise course of treatment? If so, you might have a medical malpractice claim.
In addition, if you were prescribed chemotherapy medication as a part of your course of treatment, you might be entitled to a tort claim against the drug manufacturer and/or distributor and a medical malpractice claim against the prescribing doctor if you suffered adverse affects from the medication or experienced severe, unadvertised side effects as a result of taking the medication.