Bone cancer is an uncommon type of cancer that begins when cells in the bone start to grow out of control. To understand bone cancer, it helps to know a little about normal bone tissue.
Types of primary bone cancers
Primary bone cancers (cancers that start in the bone itself) are also known as bone sarcomas. (Sarcomas are cancers that start in bone, muscle, fibrous tissue, blood vessels, fat tissue, as well as some other tissues. They can develop anywhere in the body.)
Causes, Risk Factors, and Prevention
A risk factor is anything that raises your chances of getting a disease such as cancer. Different cancers have different risk factors. Some risk factors, like smoking, can be changed. Others, like a person’s age or family history, can’t be changed.
But having a risk factor, or even several risk factors, does not mean that you will get the disease. Many people with one or more risk factors never get cancer, while others who get cancer may have had few or no known risk factors.
There are different types of primary bone cancers (cancers that start in the bones), and while they might have some things in common, these different cancers do not all have the same risk factors.
Many bone cancers are not linked with any known risk factors and have no obvious cause. But there are a few factors that can raise the risk of some types of bone cancers.
Can Bone Cancer Be Prevented?
Most known risk factors for bone cancer (such as age and certain bone diseases and inherited conditions) cannot be changed. Other than exposure to radiation (usually during radiation therapy), there are no known lifestyle-related or environmental causes of bone cancer, so at this time there is no way to protect against most of these cancers.