Your Chondroblastoma: What You Should Know

When you go to the doctor and get diagnosed with a benign tumor in the bone known as a chondroblastoma, you may find yourself quite confused and unsure of how this happened to you. Because this type of tumor isn't particularly common, you likely feel unsure and uneasy leaving the doctor's office. Before you allow yourself to become discouraged about the whole situation, get to know the facts about your chondroblastoma (also known as a Codman's tumor) and what treatment options are available to you. Then, you can get this tumor taken care of and continue on with your life, happy and healthy. 

What Causes A Chondroblastoma?

When you are diagnosed with any medical condition, particularly a tumor, you wonder what caused it and what you possibly could have done to prevent it. However, in the case of your chondroblastoma, the causes are entirely unknown. 

What doctors do believe is that these tumors originate in the cartilage in the joints. It may be due to the cartilage tissue being underdeveloped or immature. These cells, known as chondroblasts begin growing unchecked and uncontrollably and thus form a tumor. 

The important thing to know is that a chondroblastoma does not form because of anything that you did wrong, and there are no known steps that you could have taken to prevent the development of this bone tumor. 

What Are The Treatment Options Available For Your Chondroblastoma?

When you are diagnosed with a chondroblastoma, you will likely be referred to an orthopedist for a consultation. They will analyze your scans and take higher resolution scans to get a good look at the tumor. 

The next step in treatment is almost always orthopaedic surgery. Surgery to remove the tumor will relieve the symptoms you experience such as pain and muscle deterioration, and is the best way to prevent the tumor from growing even larger causing further symptoms. 

The most common orthopaedic surgery option for a chondroblastoma is known as curettage. In this case, the tumor is scraped away from the bone. This allows the surgeon to remove the tumor without having to remove the bone. Following the curettage, the surgeon will perform bone grafts to fill the hole that the tumor removal caused.

The other option aside from curettage is surgical resection. This means that a section of the bone is removed entirely. The bone is then reshaped or reconstructed to maintain proper function. 

Radiation therapy can also be used to shrink chondroblastomas, particularly in very rare cases where it has expanded into other organs. However, the most effective means of treatment is surgical tumor removal.

Do Chondroblastomas Come Back?

Once you receive treatment for your chondroblastoma, you may wonder whether or not the tumor will ever grow back. While curettage usually completely removes all tumor cells from the body, it is possible that your chondroblastoma will recur. 

Because of this fact, you should maintain contact with your orthopedist and go in for follow-up appointments to get the tumor checked. This will help you to find out if the tumor has grown back sooner rather than later. 

Now that you know more about your chondroblastoma, you can proceed with confidence and knowledge in the treatment and recovery process. So, get in contact with an orthopedist right away and get down to the process of healing.