Sarcomas are malignant tumors which originate in the connective tissues of the body in bone , cartilage , muscle blood vessels , fibrous tissue or fatty tissue . these malignant tumors are uncommon and in 2003 about 9000 individuals was diagnosed in the USA about 2000 in UK and over 500 in Australia . they are of two main types either soft tissue sarcomas that originate in muscle (myosarcoma ). Fibrous tissues (fibrosarcoma) fatty tissue (liposarcoma) or blood vessels (angiosarcoma) or solid connective tissue sarcomas that originate from bone ( osteosarcoma ) , or cartilage (chondrosarcoma ) research about the causes of sarcomas is not well advanced and there fore primary prevention is not well developed .simple screening tests are not available . soft tissue sarcomas and sarcomas in solid connective tissue are described together , because their causes , primary prevention and possibilities for screening overlap . there are some pre cancerous condition particularly for bone or cartilage tumors . the condition of paget’s disease of bone and benign cartilage growths which grow into the bone and which are called enchondromas, are pre cancerous conditions , the common cartilage and bone out growths (in contrast to enchondromas )are however not usually pre cancerous .A rare inherited condition with benign tumors of the skin . fibrous tissue and of nerve fibres called von reckling –hausen’s disease , is also a premalignant condition for sarcomas
EARLY WARNING SYMTOMS AND SIGNS OF SARCOMAS :
Persistent swelling , thickening or a lump in a bone cartilage , muscle , fat or fibrous tissue any where in the body needs to be regarded as an early symptoms or sign of a sarcoma , although in most cases these lumps , swellings and thickenings do not in fact turn out to be sarcomas
A PERSONAL RISK LIST FOR SARCOMAS :
Although in many cases is not identified , pre existing bone and cartilage abnormalities , radiation some viruses and some chemicals are the most important risks .
1.Inherited sarcoma : occasionally there is a family history or an inherited pre malignant syndrome such as von recklinghausen’s disease.
Occupational health risks , herbicides, wood preservatives radiation and defoliants.
3.personal health risks , history of paget’s disease of bone , cartilage growths in to the bone , von Recklinghausen’s disease radiation , chemotherapy and HIV progressing to AIDS.
4.Metallic surgical implants ,bullets and shrapnel in the body
5.Injury , local injury is probably not a risk but some times calls attention to a sarcoma which is already present but symptom less
6.personal life style risk male homosexuality , AIDS (for Kaposi sarcoma), possibly smoking.
EARLY DETECTION OF SARCOMAS USING SCREENING TESTS :
Screening tests available – there are no simple screening tests . any persistent lump , swelling or thickening in bone cartilage , muscle , fat or other tissues of the body requires a medical check up .
SCREENING RECOMMENDATIONS FOR SARCOMAS :
No specific screening recommendations can be made at present for average risk individuals . pre cancerous conditions of paget’s disease , or a family history of sarcomas need annual medical check ups , lumps, swellings or thickening any where persisting for longer than one month need a medical check up
SPECIFIC RECOMMENDATONS FOR PRIMARY PREVENTION OF SARCOMA’S :
1.use all necessary protection in the several at risk occupations
2.avoid or minimize exposure to radiation .
4.practice safe sex.