Bone and Soft Tissue Cancer

Bone and soft tissue cancer is a type of cancer that primarily begins in the tissues that support or surround different body structures. It includes bones, fat, nerves, muscle, blood vessels, fibrous tissues, or deep skin tissues.

When body cells start growing out of control, they become cancerous with time. The body’s anatomy is complex; any cell in whichever part of the body can become cancerous and affect nearby healthy cells and tissues. Because of this, it is critical to consult a doctor as soon as you see any symptoms. One of the most common types of cancer today is bone and soft tissue cancer.

Bone and Soft Tissue Cancer – Overview

Bone and soft tissue cancercan develop in both adults and children. It refers to the growth of cancerous cells in the bones or the body’s soft tissues. Instead of spreading from the organ to the bones, it starts in the bones or soft tissues. While a human body consists of 206 bones that help in multiple functions, multiple soft tissues support significantly. These connective tissues include lymph vessels, blood vessels, muscles, nerves, tendons, and fat cells.

What Are Sarcomas?

Sarcoma is a rare, cancerous tumor that develops in the human body or soft tissue.The connective tissue includes fat cells, blood vessels, tissues, and nerves surrounding human bones and joints. It is significantly different from common carcinomas. Bone and soft tissue sarcoma is most common in the tissues of your arms and legs but can also develop in other parts of your body.

A sarcoma is malignant, meaning it can spread to nearby healthy organs and tissues. It can lead to the destruction of bone or tissue. If it starts developing in the blood vessels and gets into the bloodstream, it can spread quickly. Soft tissue tumors can also be found in the neck, head, and trunk regions.

What Are Bone Sarcomas?

Sarcoma cancer in the bone is primarily tumors that start developing in the bones. While many of these tumors are benign, which means they do not spread, there are still cases of these tumors spreading and affecting nearby tissues and organs. These tumors are common in children and can happen in the upper arm, thigh, or shin region.

Why APCC Oncologist’s for Bone and Soft Tissue Tumors?

Regarding bone and soft tissue tumors, histology is of the utmost importance. It helps in deciding the road of treatment for bone cancer sarcoma. Furthermore, the treatment should be done post-consultation with a multi-disciplinary tumor board, as it can significantly impact the treatment and recovery.

Treatment of bone and soft tissue cancer may involve several approaches, such as chemotherapy, targeted therapy, and proton therapy. In some cases, multimodal treatment, including surgery and other therapies, may be necessary. To receive optimal treatment, it is essential to consult oncologists who possess adequate experience and advanced technology. APCC has a team of experts with a diverse range of skills that collaborate to provide the best possible treatment for patients. Additionally, APCC offers the latest treatment options and has extensive experience in treating complex tumors, which is highly advantageous for patients.

Types Of Bone & Soft Tissue Tumors

There are different types of bone & soft tissue cancer, and identifying the right one helps doctors plan the treatment better and more effectively.


Osteosarcoma is a type of tumor that starts developing in the cells of the bone. It primarily occurs at the end of long bones. It is common in arms and legs and can also develop in the pelvis region, neck, or head in rare cases. The tumor is common in teens but can also develop in adults. It is one of the most common bone cancers and can sometimes also develop in the tissue outside the bone.

Ewing Tumor (Ewing sarcoma)

Ewing sarcoma can start developing in any bone of the human body. Moreover, it can also begin in soft tissues like the muscles or other connective tissues. Though it is widespread in children, adults are also prone to such tumors. The most common areas that the Ewing tumor affects are the lower leg, chest, upper arms, thighs, or pelvis. Signs and symptoms of Ewing sarcoma depen on the tumor location. For example, the patient will have trouble breathing if it starts developing in the chest wall.


It is a rare type of cancer that starts developing in the cartilage. Cartilage is a connective tissue present in adults between the bones. Chondrosarcoma is extremely common in the pelvis, leg, and shoulder region. People who develop this tumor can have pain and swelling in the affected area. Moreover, there are rare cases where it can also start growing in the bones of the spine.


Chordoma is a rare bone cancer that develops in the skull or spine. It can also start in the lower region of the spine, which is known as the sacrum. It is a type of tumor that is not common and can have symptoms depending on its location. For example, anyone with a chordoma in their spine can have backache or numbness in the legs or arms.

Signs And Symptoms of Bone and Soft Tissue Sarcoma

The signs and symptoms of bone and soft tissue sarcoma might vary depending on location. These tumors might not be detectable early and can start as a painless lump under the skin. Some of the common symptoms are:

  • A lump under the skin that may not hurt
  • Pain in arms, legs, pelvis, or abdomen
  • Trouble in routine arm and leg motion
  • Back pain
  • Loss of weight and appetite
  • Blood while vomiting or passing stool
  • Stiffness in joint areas
  • The above list is not exhaustive; depending on the tumor's stage and location, a patient can experience other symptoms.

How To Diagnose Bone and Soft Tissue Cancer?

Diagnosing bone and soft tissue cancer involves different modes of checkups and tests. First, the doctor can look at the signs and symptoms and combine them with the patient’s age and health condition. Along with the physical examination, blood tests, X-rays, bone scans, CT scans, MRI, or PET-CT scans can also be helpful.

Risk Factors of Bone and Soft Tissue Sarcoma

While there is no way to know if anyone will have sarcoma, one should avoid a few risk factors.

  • Avoid excessive exposure to radiation
  • Damage to the lymph nodes or surgical removal of the nodes can also be a possible factor
  • High exposure to chemicals
  • History of sarcoma in the family
  • Neurofibromatosis history in the family
  • Li-Fraumeni syndrome also increases the chances of getting sarcomas
  • Patients of retinoblastoma are also susceptible to sarcomas

Prevention Of Bone and Soft Tissue Sarcoma

The only way to prevention from bone & soft tissue cancer is to avoid the risk factors as much as possible. While there are cases where patients get sarcomas despite not having any exposure to risk factors, one can only do limited things for prevention. There are chances when there is no way to prevent sarcomas. One can only avoid the risk factors to reduce the chances of developing tumors.

Proton Therapy and Its Benefits for Bone and Soft Tissue Cancer Treatment

Proton therapy is a targeted radiation treatment method that utilizes high-intensity proton beams to attack cancerous cells. It uses high-energy beams to destroy the cancerous cells, so they do not divide and mutate further.

Some of the most significant benefits of proton therapy for bone and soft tissue treatment are:

  • Low risk of radiation damage: Proton therapy is a targeted therapy that ensures maximum radiation is delivered to cancerous cells and tissues with minimum impact on nearby healthy tissues. It helps in reducing the risk of radiation damage to the healthy surrounding tissues.
  • Controlled, precise, and higher radiation dose: Proton therapy provides better control of the amount of radiation and precision. It helps in destroying the cancerous cells in a better way.
  • Low side effects: As the impact on the nearby healthy tissues is minimal, proton therapy has comparatively lesser side effects than other traditional methods.
  • Personalized approach to treatment: The cancer care team at APCC analyzes every case individually and plans the ideal treatment for the patient. Our team considers multiple factors before determining the best treatment plan for the patient.

How Can Bone and Soft Tissue Cancer Patients Prepare for The Proton Therapy Treatment?

Proton therapy requires proper planning before the actual treatment can start. The patient can follow a few steps to ensure they are ready for treatment.

  • Ensure that you work with your care team to plan a simulation session that will give you with an idea about the real session. Feel free to discuss the session while providing the care team with feedback about how you feel during the simulation.
  • Discuss with your cancer management team the necessary tests like MRI or CT that will be needed during or after the session.
  • Get information about the treatment plan from the care team. Check about the entire treatment process, the number of sessions required, and expectations from each session.
  • Understand the different side effects you can have after the proton therapy treatment for bone and skin tissue and how to deal with them.
  • It is essential to get the complete details, including medications, tests, and appointments that must be planned before, during, and after the treatment.
  • Focus on your health while consuming the proper diet that will provide the necessary nutrients.
  • APCC has excellent resources that can assist the patient and their families throughout. Do not hesitate to ask for help or assistance, including childcare, transportation, and others.

Which Bone and Soft Tissue Cancer Patients Benefit the Most From Proton Therapy?

The nature of the bone and soft tissue cancer patients makes them highly suitable for proton therapy treatment. Sarcoma cancers are usually present in sensitive locations and require precision and high doses. Thus, treating them with the most precise treatment method is essential.

Proton therapy is a great treatment option for sarcomas patients with locally advanced disease. If cancer has spread to distant areas in the body, then proton therapy might not be that efficient. Moreover, oncologists often recommend proton therapy and other treatment methods like chemotherapy, surgery, and others.

It is advisable to consult bone and soft tissue cancer specialists before making any decision. The treatment method depends on individual cases, and the care team needs to evaluate the patient thoroughly before making any decision. They need to look at the cancer location, stage, and patient’s overall health, along with the risks and benefits of different treatment options.

You can get the complete picture of proton therapy for bone and soft tissue cancer by consulting with your cancer treatment team. Moreover, you can also learn about the potential risks and benefits of different treatment options that will be suitable.

Duration of Proton Therapy in Bone and Soft Tissue Cancer?

The exact duration of the proton therapy treatment for bone and soft tissue cancer will depend on several factors. The care team will evaluate the current stage of cancer, overall health, the treatment's objectives, and location.

Ideally, the treatment can go on between 4-6 weeks. Every week will have around three to five sessions. And each session will last between 15-30 mins. The entire duration of the treatment might vary depending on the patient's exact condition.

It is critical to note that oncologists can also suggest other treatment methods in combination with proton therapy. Thus, the exact treatment plan for an individual patient will depend on the combination of treatments prescribed.
















FAQs About Bone and Soft Tissue Cancer

Soft tissue is rare cancer that starts in the tissues which support, connect, or surround different body structures. It can include blood vessels, fat, muscle, tendons, nerves, and the linings of the joints.

Common bone and soft tissue cancer symptoms include lumps under the skin, joint pain, difficulty in physical activities, loss of weight, loss of appetite, back pain, or pain in the legs and hands.

Some common risk factors of bone and soft tissue cancer are exposure to radiation or harmful chemicals, damage to lymph nodes, sarcoma in family history, patients of retinoblastoma, etc.

Proton therapy is a type of radiation therapy that uses highly intense proton energy beams to target cancerous cells. These are focused beams that do not exit through the other side of the body and also have minimal impact on the nearby healthy tissues.

Proton therapy can be used to treat bone and soft tissue sarcomas in several ways. If the cancerous cells are localized, the cancer management team can use it as a standalone treatment. They can also use it with other treatment methods like surgery or chemo.

While there is no common consensus that proves that proton therapy is more effective than other traditional treatment methods for treating sarcomas, some studies suggest that it is indeed more effective. There are many other studies to determine the relative difference between the effectiveness of various treatment methods for bone and soft tissue cancer treatment.

Sarcomas are treated using various methods like surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, and other methods. The cancer care team might include specialists for different treatment methods. The treatment method is finalized depending on the cancer stage and the patient’s state. Moreover, the treatment can be a combination of multiple treatment methods.

While bone and soft tissue sarcomas are rare, the survival rate depends on whether the cancer is metastasized or benign. For metastasized cancer, the chances of survival are lower than for cancer that has yet to spread. Many other factors, like a patient’s health and cancer stage, play a significant role in overall survival.

If one notices any unusual signs or symptoms in the body, one should immediately consult a doctor. While most signs and symptoms often interwind with other general health conditions, it is always advisable to consult a physician to avoid any risk.