What is Ewing’s Sarcoma?
This is a bit boring but thought I would cover a bit about the type of cancer I was diagnosed with. Sarcomas are a rare type of cancer that develop in supporting tissue in the body and there are about 520 cases diagnosed each year in the UK. There are two types; Bone Sarcomas which develop in the bones and soft tissue around the bone, and then there are soft tissue sarcomas that can develop in fat, blood vessels or any other tissue that supports, protects or surrounds the organs. Ewings Sarcoma is a very rare, specific type of bone cancer which is most common in teenagers and is named after the man that described it in the 1920s, Dr James Ewing. It mostly develops in long bones like the legs, arms and also the pelvis, ribs and collar bone. The cause of it is unknown but research is being done and its thought that it could occur in mainly teenagers because of rapid bone growth. The most common symptom is pain and a growth or swelling all depending on where it is located. The tumour in my shoulder had caused a lot of swelling which resulted in a lot of pain! As ive mentioned in my previous post, it is diagnosed using different types of imaging and ultimately a biopsy to confirm it. All bone cancers are classed as aggressive and mine was a high grade as it had spread to my lungs.
Its best treated with an aggressive course of chemotherapy drugs, radiotherapy and an operation to remove the tumour. In some cases, and only when necessary ,amputation of the limb is used but medical advancement has come on leaps and bounds and we live in a time when developments are always being made. Thirty years ago I may not have kept my arm.