Doctors, nurses and other caregivers from the Bone and Soft
Tissue Tumor Program care for children and teens with benign and malignant
tumors, from diagnosis to treatment to follow-up. Our team uses the latest
diagnostic approaches to identify treatments that improve your child’s quality
of life now and into adulthood.
If your child’s tumor is benign, she will be cared for by an
expert orthopedic group within Boston Children’s Hospital. Our pediatric orthopedic
surgeons are nationally recognized for their expertise in caring for pediatric
bone tumors and soft tissue tumors.
If your child’s tumor is malignant, the Bone and Soft
Tissue Tumor Program at the Dana-Farber/Boston
Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center combines the expertise of
Boston Children's Hospital and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute for the
comprehensive medical and surgical care of malignant bone and soft tissue
tumors in children and teens.
We consider you and your child integral parts of the care
team. We will work together with you to customize a state-of-the-art,
multidisciplinary plan of care based on your child’s specific needs and
Your child’s care team may include pediatric:
We’re here to answer your questions and to support you and
your family every step of the way.
As you consider where to seek care for your child, it may
help to know that research shows that children have better outcomes when
surgeons with expertise in treating these conditions provide care.
Bone and soft tissue tumors form in the body’s connective
tissue, which includes bone, cartilage, blood and fat. Some, but not all, of
these tumors are malignant or cancerous, meaning they have the ability to
spread to other parts of the body. Malignant tumors are often called sarcomas.
The Bone and Soft
Tissue Tumor Program treats children with benign and malignant conditions. For
information on a particular condition, please see the list of conditions we treat below.
As one of the nation’s
largest referral centers, and one of the few centers in the country with
extensive experience in limb salvage surgery, our renowned team of
radiologists, pathologists, oncologists and surgeons collaborate to provide the
best care possible for children with benign musculoskeletal tumors, as well as
comprehensive pediatric cancer treatment.
Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center
offers a multidisciplinary treatment approach to care for children with
malignant tumors. Because we are New England’s Phase I referral center for the
Children’s Oncology Group—an international consortium of cancer treatment
centers that conducts studies of pediatric cancers—we also offer clinical
trials that are unavailable at other regional centers. Further, we provide long-term pediatric
cancer treatment and support through Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s David B. Perini, Jr. Quality of Life Clinic.
Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center was one of the first childhood
cancer care centers in the country to use adjuvant chemotherapy and to perform
limb salvage surgery for pediatric oncology patients with osteosarcoma, an
aggressive bone tumor.
Over the last three
decades, our center has led groundbreaking research and offered advanced
treatments for children with all types of bone and soft tissue tumors. For
example, our team is researching the effectiveness of non-invasive vs. open
treatments for aneurysmal bone cysts and desmoids fibromatosis.
In addition to
providing state-of-the-art multidisciplinary care, we incorporate genomic
characterization of all bone and soft tissue tumors in order to advance
knowledge and identify genetic alterations that could inform personalized precision treatments.
Our center also has
been involved in a long-term follow-up study to learn about quality of life and
outcomes for limb salvage surgery, rotationplasty and amputation for children
who have had sarcoma of the lower leg.
Our doctors are experts in the treatment of children with benign and malignant bone and soft tissue tumors.
A quick and accurate diagnosis of cancer means that treatment can begin sooner rather than later. Our pediatric solid tumor specialists may perform a number of different tests to diagnose a musculoskeletal tumor. These include special diagnostic imaging studies such as X-rays, ultrasound and MRI, PET and CT scans, as well as magnetic resonance spectroscopy, a special test to detect metabolic changes in tissue, particularly muscle. We also perform bone scans, biopsies (including minimally invasive CT-guided core needle biopsies), bone marrow aspiration, and molecular diagnostic and genetic testing, which can help confirm the diagnosis.
Benign bone and soft tissue tumors are primarily treated with surgery. Malignant tumors are typically treated with a combination of chemotherapy, surgery or radiation therapy. We provide the following types of procedures:
Our orthopedic surgeons, clinicians, and families discuss rotationplasty, a surgical option for treating certain bone tumors. It allows a child to avoid full amputation of the leg.
Katherine Janeway, MD, talks about caring for children with solid tumors. She is always inspired by the resilience of children with cancer, and their families.