Musculoskeletal tumours throughout history and beyond: Clinical features, imaging, staging and biopsy

Akbar Jaleel Zubairi, Obada Hussein Ali Hasan, Mohammad Mustafa, Masood Umer

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Over the last century, there has been a remarkable development in the study of bone and soft tissue sarcomas. This is primarily due to the improved knowledge of the nature of these lesions and the improved imaging technology. In literature there are many protocols that are being used and all of them have reported various advantages and disadvantages of each technique used. However, there is no set guideline and whatever has been proposed has been developed on the basis of the experience of different centres and different surgeons. Objective: The current systematic review was planned to thoroughly evaluate the levels of evidence on which we base decisions for surgical management of lower extremity bone tumours. Methods: The review included descriptive studies published in the English language. Studies included case reports, case series and experiences of different centres for the surgical management of lower extremity bone tumours. Articles reporting all levels of evidence – Level I to V – were included. PubMed, ERIC, MEDLINE, EMBASE and Cochrane Reviews databases from 2002 to 2012 were searched. Results: Information was gathered and thoroughly studied from 63 articles. There were no Level I studies, 2(3.2%) Level II studies, 47(74.6%) Level III, and the remaining 14(22.2%) studies were Level IV and Level V. Conclusion: Sarcomas are rarely occurring neoplastic conditions which are present in all age groups but commonly affect young age population. Most are asymptomatic but can present with pain or pathological fracture. These lesions are commonly diagnosed with plain radiographs. CT scan and MRI may be used to delineate anatomy and to quantify the extent of soft tissue involvement. Various advantages and disadvantages associated with each aspect in the management of patients starting from the basic history-taking, physical examination, imaging, biopsy principles, peri-operative laboratory work-up and staging of the cancer were studied. Treatment ranges from conservative to en-block resection including extended curettage. Aggressive tumours should be closely followed up for recurrence and metastasis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1605-1610
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the Pakistan Medical Association
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2020


  • History
  • Musculoskeletal
  • Orthopaedic
  • Staging
  • Tumour


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