What causes spine tumors, and how are they diagnosed?
Spine tumors are usually metastatic or primary. Metastatic are more common, usually arising from breast, lung, and prostate cancers. Primary tumors are less common, and they include osteoblastomas, giant cell tumors, chordomas, aneurismal bone cysts, and osteosarcomas.
The cause for most spine tumors is currently unknown. However, it is known that some metastatic tumors are affected by familial genetics, such as breast cancer. Researchers are still just discovering many of the genes that impact primary tumor development.
What are the symptoms and how are the tumors treated?
Pain that may become more severe at night usually accompanies spine tumors. The discomfort usually occurs in the lower back and extends into the arms and legs. After a physical exam to evaluate your symptoms, one of our orthopedists might recommend diagnostic studies – MRI, CT, myelograms, bone scans PET scans, and a biopsy – before coming to a final conclusion.
Depending on the type of spine tumor, its location, and your symptoms, your orthopedist might recommend radiation therapy alone or with additional treatments.