Why raising awareness for Bone Cancer is so important

We were recently very honoured to attend the Bone Cancer Research Trusts annual ball, as guests of the Daniel Barnett Arts Foundation.

The ball was held at The Royal Armouries in Leeds. The theme of the event was ‘Put on the Ritz’, so all glitz and glam, with lots of 1920’s flapper dresses.

The event raised over a staggering £70,000 on the night to help further BCRT’s mission to save lives and improve outcomes for people affected by primary bone cancer through research, information, awareness and support.

The Bone Cancer Research Trust was created in 2004, by a group of families who had lost children and young people to primary bone cancer came together. They wanted to tackle head-on the alarming fact that there was virtually no accessible bone cancer information, and practically no funding for research into this disease. Determined to change this and help others with the disease, the families pooled funds they had already raised, and together with guidance from Professor Ian Lewis (Consultant Paediatrician and Adolescent Oncologist at St James’s University Hospital, Leeds), the Bone Cancer Research Trust became a registered charity in 2006.

Primary bone cancer also referred to as a bone sarcoma, is very rare and makes up approximately 0.2% of all cancers diagnosed in the UK(1,2). However, some tumours of the bone can be benign (non-cancerous) and these are not included in this statistic.

85% of all primary bone cancers diagnosed are of the 4 most common types, which are: Osteosarcoma, Ewing Sarcoma ,Chondrosarcoma and Chordoma.

Every year, around 380 people in England alone, and around 35 people in the Republic of Ireland will develop the disease In 2015, there were a reported 531 cases of primary bone cancer in the UK and a larger 3,300 cases in the U.S.A.

There are approximately 51,658 cases of primary bone cancer cases reported each year worldwide, and a diagnosis is made every 10 minutes somewhere in the world.

Symptoms can be very general and often appear similar to the symptoms of sports injuries, growing pains or many other common conditions such as tendonitis or arthritis.

The most common symptoms of primary bone cancer are:

  • Bone pain
  • This can be constant (there all the time) or intermittent (comes and goes). Painkillers may not help and the pain can be worse at night
  • The area may be tender to touch
  • A lump or swelling may be seen or felt. In other places (e.g. the pelvis) a lump or swelling may not be visible
  • Problems with mobility such as stiff joints or reduced movement
  • Development of an unexplained limp
  • Easy bruising

There are less common symptoms which may also occur in some patients, including:

  • Tiredness
  • Sweats/fever
  • Weight loss

You can find out more about the wonderful work BCRT does here.

Written by Kelly McFarland

Likes to post in black and white on Instagram. Avid Tea drinker, preferably Yorkshire Tea or Lipton Iced Tea and lover of Pop Culture. Contact: kelly@celebmix.com