Lifespan Orthopedics Institute
The Most Comprehensive Orthopedic Care in the Region

Orthopedic Oncology

Orthopedic oncology services at Lifespan provide patients with the most current diagnosis and treatment options for tumors of the bone and soft tissue. Combining the expertise of both the Orthopedics Institute and the Lifespan Cancer Institute, our specialists provide a multidisciplinary approach to treating musculoskeletal cancer in adult and pediatric patients.

Led by Richard Terek, MD, FACS, we offer comprehensive treatment plans customized to your individual needs and conditions.

What is Orthopedic Oncology?

A medic and patient look at a medical image.

Orthopedic oncology is the diagnosis and treatment of primary benign and malignant tumors of the musculoskeletal system – the bones and soft tissues, as well as metastatic disease to the skeleton.

Bone and soft tissue sarcomas are some of the rarest malignant tumors treated. This means that orthopedic oncologists must be highly specialized and expertly trained. It also means that treatment plans should be individualized to the exact case and circumstances of the patient. Due to the rarity of this type of cancer, there are a limited number of orthopedic oncologists practicing in the United States.

Metastatic disease is more common.  These are tumors that have started in another organ and have spread to the bone.  Sometimes bones affected by metastatic disease need to be reinforced or replaced.

Orthopedic Oncology Treatments

Because some tumors of the musculoskeletal system can be cancerous, while others can be benign, a biopsy may be needed to determine if further treatment is needed.

Treatment can include removing the tumors and reconstructing the bones to help restore mobility and relieve symptoms. Limb salvage surgeries to reconstruct the limbs, pelvis, bones, and joints are often performed with combinations of artificial joints and bone grafts.