Shoulder Cancer Symptoms
Shoulder cancer occurs mostly in older adults who have crossed their forties. The risk of shoulder cancer increases as a person gets older. Here, in this factsheet we are going to discuss the causes and shoulder cancer symptoms thoroughly.
Cancerous tumors that start in the bone tissue are called primary bone cancer. These cancerous tumors of the bone kill normal bone tissues. However, not all the bone tumors are cancerous and noncancerous tumors are more commonly diagnosed than malignant ones. Both noncancerous and cancerous tumors may grow and apply pressure on healthy bone tissues.
The cancer that spreads (metastasizes) to the bones from other parts of the body such a
s the prostate, lung, or breast cancer is called metastatic or secondary bone cancer. The name is given to the part or tissues in which it started. Secondary or metastatic bone cancer is more frequently detected as compared to the primary bone cancer.
The bones are made up of a combination of three different tissues namely fibrous, osteoid, and cartilaginous with inputs from components of bone marrow. Shoulder cancer occurs due to the second type of the primary bone cancer. Osteosarcoma and the Ewing sarcoma family of tumors (ESFTs) are the two types of bone cancer apart from chondrosarcoma.
Chondrosarcoma the type of the primary bone cancer is the cause of shoulder cancer. The
cancer starts in the cartilaginous tissue. Cartilage cushions the endings of the bones and lines the joints. The
disease mostly strikes in the shoulder, upper leg, and pelvis. In the pelvic region the cancer starts in the location between the hip bones. In some cases, a chondrosarcoma encloses cancerous (malignant) bone cells and the doctor would classify the tumor as osteosarcoma.
Shoulder Cancer Symptoms
- Pain in the tumor
- Sleepless nights due to pain
- Bone fractures
- Weakened bones
- Night sweats
- A painless mass
- A benign tumor due to a rotator cuff or strained ankle problem
- Swelling in or close to a bone
It is advisable to consult a doctor if any of the symptoms persist due to shoulder cancer or health conditions. The primary bone cancer accounts only for one percent of all cancers. Every year in the United States only 2300 cases of the primary bone cancer are detected.
Chondrosarcoma take places mostly in older adults who are over forty years of age. The risk of shoulder cancer increases as the person progresses day-by-day. This disease is hardly ever diagnosed in adolescents and children.
A doctor may start the diagnosis of the shoulder cancer by asking some vital questions regarding the patient’s personal and medical history. It helps them in planning proper diagnostic tests for the patient. The doctor will perform physical examination of the patient and will recommend following diagnostic tests.
Blood tests are ordered to find out the level of the enzyme alkaline phosphates. A large amount of the enzymes are always present in the blood and the test is under inspection for the reliability in diagnosing the bone cancer.
A biopsy is performed for the confirmation of the cancer. It is the removal of the tissue sample drawn from the bone tumor. The doctor may perform a needle or an incisional biopsy. During an incisional biopsy the sample is taken directly from the tumor and in a needle biopsy the doctor makes a tiny hole in the bone and withdraws a sample of tissue. A pathologist observes the sample under a microscope for cancer cells.
The x-rays show the size, shape, and the location of the tumor. Several bone scan techniques are used to determine the tumor which includes a bone scan, an MRI, a CT, and PET scan methods along with an angiogram of the blood vessels.
Shoulder cancer is considered as rare by doctors due to the arrangement of the shoulder joints. So far, we have covered the topic shoulder cancer symptoms in detail.