Sarcoma Cancer: All you need to know about the disease

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Sarcoma is a rare type of cancer that is unique from the more common cancerous tumor, known as carcinoma. 

Sarcomas can be found in the cells that connect other kinds of tissues in the body (connective tissue). Though sarcomas are everywhere in the body, they are mostly found in the bones, muscles, tendons, cartilage, nerves, fat, and blood vessels of arms and legs. 

Though there are at least 50 types of sarcoma, they are classified into two main groups; the soft tissue sarcoma and the bone sarcoma. The soft tissue sarcoma affects the soft tissues. They are more difficult to detect because they can grow anywhere in the body. The bone sarcoma affects the bone.

The causes of sarcoma are unknown but scientists believe that family history of sarcoma, Paget's disease, some genetic disorders, and exposure to radiation can increase your risk of developing the disease:

The first sign of sarcoma is often a painless lump. When the lump grows in size, it may press against nerves or muscles and create discomfort. Some types of sarcoma can also cause difficulty breathing, lingering pain in the affected bone, especially at night.

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It can also make it hard for the patient to breathe. There are no tests that can find these tumors before they cause noticeable symptoms. Osteosarcoma(bone sarcoma) often affects children and young adults. Sometimes, the symptoms can be mistaken as sports-related injuries or growing pain. 

The treatments for this disease may differ depending on the type, the location in the body, and how far it has spread or metastasized.

In most cases of osteosarcoma, cancerous cells can be removed by surgery, without amputating an arm or a leg. Radiation therapy can also be used to shrink the tumor before surgery or kill remaining cancerous cells after surgery. However, radiation will be the main treatment if surgery is not an option. Chemotherapy is advised if the cancer is at an advanced stage.

In the case of soft tissue, Tacoma surgery is usually the best form of treatment especially if the two more are not likely to spread to other parts of the body.

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