Ewing’s sarcoma is a type of cancerous growth that originates in the bone and may also involve the soft tissue surrounding the bone such as cartilage and nerves. It is commonly seen in children and adolescents. Bones most commonly involved are the pelvis, thigh, shin, shoulder blades, and ribs.
Chromosomal changes that occur after conception are thought to be responsible for Ewing’s sarcoma. Symptoms of Ewing’s sarcoma include pain, swelling, and tenderness at the location of the tumor, the presence of a warm, soft lump near the skin surface, persistent fever, and weakened bones that fracture for no apparent reason.
In addition to discussing symptoms and performing a physical examination your doctor may also order blood tests to identify any abnormal levels of cells or enzymes indicating the presence of Ewing’s sarcoma. Imaging studies to further evaluate the tumor include X-rays, bone scans, computed tomography, positron emission tomography, and magnetic resonance imaging. A bone marrow aspiration and biopsy may also be performed to microscopically identify Ewing sarcoma cells.
Treatment for Ewing’s sarcoma usually includes intravenous or intramuscular chemotherapy to destroy the tumor cells, surgical removal of the tumor, radiation therapy, as well as stem cell transplantation which involves removal of the cancerous bone marrow and replacing it with stem cells. Palliative therapy with medication, nutritional changes, relaxation techniques, and other supportive measures helps keep your child comfortable.