Many surgeons treat giant cell tumor of bone (GCT) with intralesional curettage. Wide resection is reserved for extensive bone destruction where joint preservation is impossible or when expendable sites (eg, fibular head) are affected. Adjuvants such as polymethylmethacrylate and phenol have been recommended to reduce the risk of local recurrence after intralesional surgery. However, the best treatment of these tumors and risk factors for recurrence remain controversial.
We evaluated the recurrence-free survival after surgical treatment of GCT to determine the influence of the surgical approach, adjuvant treatment, local tumor presentation, and demographic factors on the risk of recurrence.
We retrospectively reviewed 118 patients treated for benign GCT of bone between 1985 and 2005. Recurrence rates, risk factors for recurrence and the development of pulmonary metastases were determined. The minimum followup was 36 months (mean, 108.4 ± 43.7; range, 36–233 months).
Wide resection had a lower recurrence rate than intralesional surgery (5% versus 25%). Application of polymethylmethacrylate decreased the risk of local recurrence after intralesional surgery compared with bone grafting; phenol application alone had no effect on the risk of recurrence. Pulmonary metastases occurred in 4%; multidisciplinary treatment including wedge resection, chemotherapy, and radiotherapy achieved disease-free survival or stable disease in all of these patients.
We recommend intralesional surgery with polymethylmethacrylate for the majority of primary GCTs. Because pulmonary metastases are rare and aggressive treatment of pulmonary metastases is usually successful, we believe the potential for metastases should not by itself create an indication for wide resection of primary tumors.
Level of Evidence
Level III, therapeutic study. See Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
Treatment of giant cell tumor of bone (GCT) often is complicated by local recurrence. Intralesional curettage is the standard of care for primary GCTs. However, there is controversy whether intralesional curettage should be preferred over wide resection in recurrent GCTs.
We investigated the rerecurrence-free survival after surgical treatment of recurrent GCTs to determine the influence of the surgical approach, adjuvant treatment, local tumor presentation, and demographic factors on the risk of further recurrence.
Patients and Methods
We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of 46 patients with recurrent GCTs of long bones treated with wide resection or intralesional curettage and compared these cohorts. Recurrence rates, risk factors for recurrence, and the development of pulmonary metastases were determined. The minimum followup was 37 months (mean, 134 months; range, 37–337 months).
The rate of rerecurrence after wide resection was 6%. Intralesional curettage showed an overall rerecurrence rate of 32%. Implantation of polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) instead of bone grafting was associated with a lower risk of subsequent recurrence in intralesional procedures (14% versus 50%). Extracompartmental disease did not increase the risk of rerecurrence. Pulmonary metastases occurred in seven patients and appeared independent of the surgical treatment modality chosen.
Intralesional curettage with methylmethacrylate for recurrent GCT provided equivalent tumor control compared with resection in this retrospective study. If joint salvage is possible, we advocate this treatment over resection in recurrent GCTs to preserve the native joint articulation.
Level of Evidence
Level III, therapeutic study. See Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
Giant cell tumor is an aggressive benign neoplasm of bone. A number of adjuvant agents have been used to supplement intralesional curettage to reduce the otherwise high local recurrence rate. High concentration ethanol is more readily available and less toxic to use than some common alternatives. No report on its use in a group of patients with giant cell tumor is available. Records were retrospectively reviewed for all giant cell tumors treated by intralesional curettage and high concentration ethanol irrigation as the only chemical adjuvant. Twenty-five primary excisional curettages and 12 repeat curettages for giant cell tumors of bone were performed in 31 patients. Patients were followed for a mean of three years and 10 months. There were five recurrences after primary excision procedures, and three after repeat excisions. Only use of a high-speed burr and lower Campanacci staging correlated with reduced recurrence rate, and these were not statistically significant. Most defects were filled with allograft or calcium sulfate. In the 11 patients treated primarily with curettage using a high-speed burr and adjuvant ethanol with minimum two-year follow-up, only one stage 3 lesion in a distal radius recurred. Multiple washes with high concentration ethanol, when used in conjunction with aggressive curettage including high-speed burring, is an effective and safe adjuvant. The necessity of any chemical adjuvant after appropriately aggressive curettage and burring can only be definitively demonstrated with a prospective, randomized, multi-center trial. Until such evidence becomes available, the use of adjuvant ethanol offers a compromise between higher toxicity adjuvants and no chemical adjuvant at all.
Treatment options for giant cell tumors of the distal tibia include curettage and cement packing, curettage and bone grafting, or resection and reconstruction for aggressive tumors. Curettage of aggressive tumors often leads to severe bone loss requiring reconstruction. Allograft and autograft may be effective options for reconstruction, but each is associated with drawbacks including the possibility of infection and collapse. We present a case of giant cell tumor of the distal tibia treated with curettage and arthrodesis using a porous tantalum spacer. Complete removal of the tumor and successful arthrodesis of the ankle were accomplished using the spacer. The patient returned to pain-free walking along with eradication of the giant cell tumor. We believe porous tantalum spacers are a reasonable option for reconstructing the distal tibia after curettage of a giant cell tumor with extensive bone loss.
Giant cell tumour (GCT) is a benign, but aggressive, primary tumour of the bone. The recurrence rate after surgical treatment has been reported to be as high as 50%. Many surgical techniques have been employed in the treatment of this tumour. More aggressive interventions, such as en bloc resection and bulk allograft or prosthetic reconstruction, are generally understood to be associated with lower rates of local recurrence. However, because of lessened morbidity, intralesional techniques have come to be favoured for this condition. In addition to curettage, various adjuvant procedures and packing materials have been advocated in order to control and reconstruct long bone defects secondary to this neoplasm. We report our experience with 40 long bone GCT patients treated with curettage, burring, bone grafting and no adjuvants between 1997 and 2002. There was a local recurrence rate of 32.5%, with most recurrences noted within the first 30 months after surgery. Minor complications were found in 18% of patients. The risk of local recurrence in this study is acceptable (within the range that has been historically reported for curettage and bone grafting). In cases where more resources are available, the addition of adjuvant therapies, as noted in the recent literature, may be beneficial. The results of this study should be considered when designing multicenteric studies in the future.
Giant cell tumors (GCTs) of bone often are treated with curettage, adjuvant therapy, and cementation. Phenol is a commonly used adjuvant associated with local control rates ranging from 9% to 25%. However, it is corrosive to the eyes, skin, and respiratory tract. Ethanol is readily available and does not cause chemical burns on contact, but it is unclear whether ethanol can achieve similar local control rates as phenol for treating GCTs.
We evaluated (1) the recurrence rate and recurrence-free Kaplan-Meier survival function, (2) Musculoskeletal Tumor Society (MSTS) functional score (1993 version), and (3) complications of two groups of patients with GCTs treated with extensive curettage, local adjuvant therapy with phenol or ethanol, and cement reconstruction, to determine if ethanol was a reasonable alternative to phenol.
Patients and Methods
We retrospectively reviewed all 26 patients with GCTs in the long bones of extremities treated with curettage, high-speed burring, phenolization, and cementation between May 1995 and November 2001, and 35 patients treated with the same protocol, except phenol was replaced with 95% ethanol, between November 2001 and November 2007. The recurrence rates, Kaplan-Meier recurrence-free survival curves, and MSTS functional scores of these two treatment groups were compared with Fisher’s exact test, Tarone-Ware test, and Mann-Whitney U test, respectively. The minimum followup was 36 months (mean, 58 months; range, 36–156 months).
Local recurrence rates were similar in the two groups: 11% in the ethanol group and 12% in the phenol group. The survival curves (using local recurrence as an endpoint) of the two groups were similar. The mean MSTS functional score was 27.3 (91%) for the ethanol group and 26.9 (90%) for the phenol group.
Ethanol is a reasonable alternative to phenol when adjuvant therapy is considered in the treatment of GCTs of long bones.
Level of Evidence
Level III, therapeutic study. See Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
Giant cell tumor (GCT) of bone though one of the commonest bone tumors encountered by an orthopedic surgeon continues to intrigue treating surgeons. Usually benign, they are locally aggressive and may occasionally undergo malignant transformation. The surgeon needs to strike a balance during treatment between reducing the incidence of local recurrence while preserving maximal function.
Differing opinions pertaining to the use of adjuvants for extension of curettage, the relative role of bone graft or cement to pack the defect and the management of recurrent lesions are some of the issues that offer topics for eternal debate.
Current literature suggests that intralesional curettage strikes the best balance between controlling disease and preserving optimum function in the majority of the cases though there may be occasions where the extent of the disease mandates resection to ensure adequate disease clearance.
An accompanying treatment algorithm helps outline the management strategy in GCT.
Curettage; giant cell tumor; treatment
Giant cell tumour of bone (GCTB) is an expansile osteolytic tumour which contains numerous osteoclast-like giant cells. GCTB frequently recurs and can produce metastatic lesions in the lungs. Bisphosphonates are anti-resorptive drugs which act mainly on osteoclasts.
In this study, we have examined clinical and radiological outcomes of treatment with aminobisphosphonates on 25 cases of aggressive primary, recurrent and metastatic GCTB derived from four European centres. We also analysed in vitro the inhibitory effect of zoledronic acid on osteoclasts isolated from GCTBs.
Treatment protocols differed with several different aminobisphosphonates being employed, but stabilisation of disease was achieved in most of these cases which were refractory to conventional treatment. Most inoperable sacral/pelvic tumours did not increase in size and no further recurrence was seen in GCTBs that had repeatedly recurred in bone and soft tissues. Lung metastases did not increase in size or number following treatment. Zoledronic acid markedly inhibited lacunar resorption by GCTB-derived osteoclasts in vitro.
Our findings suggest that bisphosphonates may be useful in controlling disease progression in GCTB and that these agents directly inhibit GCTB - derived osteoclast resorption. These studies highlight the need for the establishment of standardised protocols to assess the efficacy of bisphosphonate treatment of GCTB.
The optimal treatment of aneurysmal bone cysts remains an area of debate. Curettage, with or without adjuvant therapy, has been advocated for tumors in most locations. To evaluate argon beam coagulation as adjuvant therapy to curettage, we retrospectively analyzed the complication and recurrence rates in 40 consecutive patients with a diagnosis of aneurysmal bone cyst. For our analysis of recurrence, we excluded six of the 40 patients who were lost to followup or had less than 18 months followup; five patients treated with resection also were excluded. Of the remaining 29 patients, 17 were treated with curettage and argon beam coagulation and 12 were treated with curettage with or without phenol. None of the 17 patients treated with curettage and argon beam coagulation had a recurrence, whereas four patients treated without argon beam coagulation had recurrences. There were no differences between patients treated with or without argon beam coagulation regarding frequencies of intraoperative complications, neurovascular injury, or bone graft incorporation. Argon beam coagulation seems to offer favorable control rates when compared with curettage with or without phenol. No complications have been experienced thus far with its use.
Level of Evidence: Level IV, therapeutic study. See Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
The solid variant of aneurysmal bone cyst (solid ABC) is rarely encountered in long bones and appropriate treatment for this disease remains unclear. We experienced a 13-year-old boy suffering from pain in his left knee caused by solid ABC. Simple curettage of the bone lesion without any adjuvant therapy and a bone graft gave immediate pain relief. Histological examination of the surgical specimen showed typical features of solid ABC, and cycloxygenase-2 (COX-2) expression was confirmed in giant cells with a background of spindle cells by immunohistochemistry. Magnetic resonance imaging showed that soft tissue edema surrounding the lesion was improved two months after surgery and there was no indication of recurrence two years after surgery.
If COX-2 secreted from the tumor induces soft tissue edema, simple curettage of the bone lesion seems to be a reasonable treatment for solid ABC and is able to minimize invasive treatment of the patients.
aneurismal bone cysts; curettage; cyclooxygenase 2
We reviewed 87 patients with giant-cell tumor treated between 1992 and 2001. The mean follow-up was 62 (28–138) months. Fifty-six lesions were treated with intralesional curettage with adjunctive phenol treatment and reconstructed with autograft and allograft. Thirty-one lesions were treated with wide resection and reconstructed with prosthesis, osteochondral allograft, or alloprosthetic composite. Overall recurrence was 12%. Recurrence rate after curettage was 18% and 3% after wide excision. Complication rate after wide excision was higher than that after curettage. Functional outcome was evaluated using the Enneking scoring system. Average rating was 86% for the lower extremity and 83% for the upper extremity. The overall satisfactory rate was 88%.
Curettage and wide resection are accepted methods of treatment of giant cell tumor (GCT) of bone. The success rate with curettage in different reports varies widely. There is a paucity in the literature regarding selection of cases for curettage. Present study is an analysis of outcome of 34 cases treated by curettage and bone grafting.
Materials and Methods:
Thirty-four cases of GCT of bone, 28 fresh and six with recurrence were treated by curettage and bone grafting. All cases of Campanancci grade 1, 2 and grade 3 which on computerized tomography scan showed break in the cortex confined to one surface and cortical break less than one third of circumference were treated by curettage and bone grafting.
4 (14%) of these lesions treated primarily by us showed recurrence after one and half year.
Curettage and bone grafting is a reliable method in the treatment of GCT, provided guidelines regarding selection of cases and principles of tumor surgery are strictly adhered to.
Computerized tomography scan; curettage and bone grafting; wide resection
Giant cell tumor (GCT) of the bone is a relatively common primary bone tumor. Treatment with simple curettage often results in a high local recurrence rate. Tumor resection and reconstruction with prosthesis or an allograft has a low rate of local recurrence; however, the patient’s native joint function becomes significantly impaired. With the development and usage of aggressive curettage, it is a priority to treat GCT with a method that reduces the local recurrence rate and preserves the native joint. To evaluate the feasibility of treating GCT with aggressive curettage and cement filling using internal fixation and oral bisphosphonates, 16 patients with GCT of the bone located in the distal femur and treated in our department from January 2008 to June 2011, were followed up. The patients had received aggressive curettage, bone cement filling, internal fixation and oral administration of bisphosphonates.There were seven males and nine females in total, with a mean age of 38 years. All patients were carefully assessed prior to surgery in order to determine the integrity of the tumor cavity. Subsequently, patients were treated with aggressive curettage by high-speed burring and cementation with internal fixation, and were administered postoperative oral alendronate sodium tablets (10 mg/day) for two years. The median follow-up time was 25 months. None of the patients were lost to follow-up. No local recurrence or metastasis was observed in the last follow-up. The Enneking limb function score range of the affected limb was 24–29 (average, 26.7). At the last follow-up, all patients exhibited solid fixation without fracture of the subchondral bone in plain radiographs. Based on these data, we suggest that patients with distal femoral GCT may be treated with aggressive curettage and cement filling, with internal fixation and oral bisphosphonates. The advantages of this method are its safety and efficacy. However, the long-term outcomes require further investigation.
giant cell tumor; cement filling; internal fixation; bisphosphonate
Phenol is widely used for years as local adjuvant treatment for bone tumours. Despite its use for a long time, no information is available about the local concentration of phenol that is achieved in an individual patient, and the most sufficient and safe procedure to wash out the phenol after using it as local adjuvant.
1. What is the initial local concentration of phenol in the tissue of the cavity wall after the application of phenol? 2. How quickly is phenol 85% diluted by washing the bone cavity with ethanol 96% solution? 3. Is the degree and speed of dilution influenced by the size of the cavity? 4. How many times should the cavity be rinsed to obtain sufficient elimination of phenol?
A basic science study was performed at respectively 16 and 10 patients, treated by intralesional curettage and adjuvant therapy for low-grade central chondrosarcoma of bone. Test 1:in 16 patients ten samples were collected of the mixture of phenol and ethanol from the bone cavity. Test 2:in ten patients, two biopsy samples were taken from the cavity wall in the bone during surgery.
Phenol concentrations had wide variety in different patients, but all decreased by rinsing with ethanol.
Ethanol 96% is effective to wash out local applicated phenol, by rinsing the bone cavity six times. The local concentration of phenol diminishes to an acceptable concentration of 0.2%. This study provides new insights to safely further improve the surgical technique of intralesional treatment of bone tumours.
Giant cell tumor of bone (GCTB) is a benign but locally aggressive bone tumor of young adults. It typically presents as a large lytic mass at the end of the epiphysis of long bones. Grossly it is comprised of cystic and hemorrhagic areas with little or no periosteal reaction. Microscopically areas of frank hemorrhage, numerous multinucleated giant cells and spindly stromal cells are present. Telomeric fusions, increased telomerase activity and karyotypic aberrations have been advanced as a proof of its neoplastic nature. However such findings are not universal and can be seen in rapidly proliferating normal cells as well as in several osseous lesions of developmental and/or reactive nature, and the true neoplastic nature of GCTB remains controversial. The ancillary studies have generally not reached to the point where these alone can be taken as sole diagnostic and discriminatory criteria. While giant cells and stromal cells have been extensively studied, little attention has been paid to the overwhelming hemorrhagic component. If examined carefully intact and partially degenerated red blood cells are almost invariably seen in many giant cells as well as in the stroma. While hemorrhage in many patients may be resolved without leaving any trace over time, in some it gives rise to giant cell formation, and in others it may lead to proliferation of fibroblasts and histiocytes. At times one sees xanthomatous cells due to intracytoplasmic cholesterol deposits and sharp cholesterol clefts. Individual genetic makeup, local tissue factors as well as the amount of hemorrhage may play a key role in the final effects and outcome. Malignancy usually does not occur in GCTB and when discover, it usually represents primary bone sarcomas missed at original diagnosis. Embolization therapy to curtail hemorrhage and insertion of cement substance to support matrix are helpful in reducing recurrences. Aneurysmal bone cyst (ABC) shares many features with GCTB. There had been unique karyotypic changes in some aneurysmal bone cysts making it distinct from GCTB. However these changes may be in the endothelial cells which are quite different from stromal or giant cells. It had been concluded that the poor matrix support to the vessels may lead to frequent and profuse intraosseous hemorrhage attracting blood-derived monocytes with active conversion into osteoclasts, resulting in GCTB formation. On the other hand, dilatation of the thin-walled blood vessels results in formation of ABCs. If hemorrhagic foci are replaced by proliferation of fibroblasts and histiocytes, then a picture of fibrous histiocytic lesion is emerged. Enhanced telomerase activity and karyotypic aberrations may be necessary for rapid division of the nuclei of the giant cells in order to be able to deal with significant in situ intraosseous hemorrhage.
Giant cell tumor; bone; osteoclastoma; aneurysmal bone cyst; osteoclast; hemorrhage; bone matrix; telomerase
Local control rates for Giant Cell Tumor of Bone (GCT) have been reported in a large number of retrospective series. However, there remains a lack of consensus with respect to the need for a surgical adjuvant when intralesional curettage is performed. We have systematically reviewed the literature and identified six studies in which two groups from the same patient cohort were treated with intralesional curettage and high-speed burring with or without a chemical or thermal adjuvant. Studies were evaluated for quality and pooled data was analyzed using the fixed effects model. Data from 387 patients did not indicate improved local control with the use of surgical adjuvants. Given the available data, we conclude that surgical adjuvants are not required when meticulous tumor removal is performed.
Giant cell tumor of bone (GCT) is a benign lesion with great propensity for local recurrence. This study aimed to analyse the rates of local recurrence and its possible predisposing factors in Campanacci’s Grade III and II GCT of long bones following intralesional curettage and bone cementing.
Materials and Methods:
32 cases of either sex with Campanacci’s Grade II (n= 14), and Grade III (n=18) with intact articular surface, operated between 1995 and 2007 in form of intralesional curettage and bone cementing were studied. All the cases were followed up for 2.5-12 years (mean, 6.5), after primary treatment. The mean age at operation was 32.4 years (range, 18.5-40 years). The proximal tibia was involved in 13 cases (40.6%), followed by distal femur (n=11)34.4% distal tibia (n=3) 9.4%, proximal femur (n=2) 3.2% and distal radius (n=3) 9.4%.
Eleven patients (34.4%) had local recurrence, of which eight were of Campanacci’s Grade III. The mean recurrence time was 14 months (range, 3-34 months). The two-year recurrence-free survivorship was 71.9% (n=23/32). Post-recurrence mean follow-up was 4.2 years (range, 2-6.5 years).
We observed higher rate of local recurrence with Campanacci’s Grade III GCTs. We recommend selective use of this procedure in Grade III lesions, particularly with extensive soft tissue involvement.
Bone cementing; GCT; recurrence
Chondrosarcomas of bone traditionally have been treated by wide or radical excision, procedures that may result in considerable lifelong disability. Grade 1 chondrosarcomas have little or no metastatic potential and are often difficult to distinguish from painful benign enchondromas. Curettage with adjuvant cryosurgery has been proposed as an alternative therapy for Grade 1 chondrosarcomas given the generally better function after the procedure. However, because it is an intralesional procedure, curettage and cryosurgery may be associated with higher rates of recurrence.
We asked whether Grade 1 chondrosarcomas and enchondromas of uncertain malignant potential treated by curettage and cryosurgery are associated with low recurrence rates and high functional scores.
Patients and Methods
We retrospectively reviewed the records of 46 patients with Grade 1 chondrosarcomas and enchondromas of uncertain malignant potential treated by curettage and cryosurgery. Forty-one patients had tumors of the long bones. Patients were followed a minimum of 18 months (average, 47.2. months; range, 18–134 months) for evidence of recurrence and for assessment of Musculoskeletal Tumor Society (MSTS) functional score.
Two of the 46 patients had recurrences in the original tumor site (4.3% recurrence rate), which subsequently were removed by wide excision, and both patients were confirmed to be disease-free 36 and 30 months, respectively, after the second surgery. The mean MSTS score was 27.2 of 30 points (median, 29 points).
Our observations show curettage with cryosurgery is associated with low recurrence of Grade 1 chondrosarcoma and high functional scores. Curettage with cryosurgery is a reasonable alternative to wide or radical excision as the treatment for Grade 1 chondrosarcomas, and allows for more radical surgery in the event of local recurrence.
Level of Evidence
Level IV, therapeutic study. See the Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
The best treatment of giant cell tumor of the sacrum is controversial. It is unclear whether adjuvant treatment with intralesional surgery reduces recurrences or increases morbidity.
We therefore asked whether adjuvants altered recurrence rates and complications after intralesional surgery for sacral giant cell tumors.
We retrospectively studied 31 patients with sacral giant cell tumors treated with intralesional surgery with and without adjuvants. Survival to local recurrence was evaluated using Kaplan-Meier analysis. The differences in survival to local recurrence with and without adjuvants were evaluated using multivariate Cox regression analysis. Complications were recorded from clinical records and images. The minimum followup was 36 months (median, 108 months; range, 36–276 months).
Overall survival to local recurrence was 90% at 60 and 120 months. Survival to local recurrence with and without radiation was 91% and 89%, with and without embolization was 91% and 86%, and with and without local adjuvants was 88% and 92%, respectively. Adjuvants had no influence on local recurrence. Mortality was 6%: one patient died at 14 days postoperatively from a massive pulmonary embolism and another patient had radiation and died of a high-grade sarcoma. Fifteen of the 31 patients (48%) had one or more complications: eight patients (26%) had wound complications and seven patients (23%) had massive bleeding during curettage with hemodynamic instability. L5-S2 neurologic deficits decreased from 23% preoperatively to 13% postoperatively; S3-S4 deficits increased from 16% to 33%.
Adjuvants did not change the likelihood of local recurrence when combined with intralesional surgery but the complication rate was high.
Level of Evidence
Level IV, therapeutic study. See Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s11999-010-1448-8) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Giant cell tumors are neoplasms of mesenchymal stromal cells with varied manifestations. There is no uniform accepted treatment protocol for these tumors. Curettage, although an accepted method of treatment, carries a high local recurrence rate. Adjuvant therapies including high-speed burr debridement, cryotherapy, and phenol treatment have been advocated to reduce local recurrence. We have used these adjuvants to determine if improved cure rate with improved outcomes could be attained with regard to local tumor control and functional outcome. Twenty-eight cases of proven giant cell tumors of the distal femur and proximal tibia were included in this prospective case series. The lesions were at the upper tibia in 14 cases and the lower femur in 14 patients. The patients were evaluated clinically, radiologically, and by histological examination. Companacci grading and Enneking staging were determined. The treatment was done in the following steps: Curettage and further debridement with a high-speed burr, cryotherapy, impaction of the cavity with subchondral iliac crest bone graft, and, finally, cementation with or without internal fixation. Functional evaluation was done by Enneking’s system. The follow-up time was between 24–40 months with a mean of 34 months. The functional results of the procedure were rated as good to excellent with a mean of 93.9%. This technique has the advantages of joint preservation, excellent functional outcome, and low recurrence rate when compared with other treatment modalities. For these reasons, it is recommended as an adjuvant to curettage for most giant cell tumors of bone.
giant cell tumor; cryosurgery; bone graft
The objective of this study was to present a simple, convenient, and reliable technique for the application of liquid nitrogen and to evaluate the effectiveness of curettage and cryosurgery. Between 1992 and 2002, 24 patients who had benign aggressive and low-grade malignant bone tumors were treated by curettage and cryosurgery. While cryosurgery was applied by the "direct pour" technique in the first seven patients, it was applied by the "pressurized spraying" technique in the others. Functional results were graded according to Enneking. The mean follow-up was 47 (range 9−131) months. There were no local recurrences. Three patients who underwent the direct pour technique developed partial skin necrosis. The functional results were excellent in 14 patients, good in six, and fair in four. When compared with previous reports on cryosurgery and its application techniques, we detected no tumor recurrence or complications, including soft-tissue injury, infection, and late fracture with liquid nitrogen applied by the pressurized spraying technique.
Several cases of long bone giant cell tumor have been reported in the literature. We report the case of a patient with a giant cell tumor in the distal ulna. This is very unusual, with a reported incidence of 0.45 to 6%.
A 17-year-old Colombian man presented with a painful swelling of the left wrist. After performing an instrumental examination, a diagnosis of distal ulna giant cell tumor was made. The tumor was treated with an intralesional curettage, phenol application and bone grafting.
This tumor may have a good prognosis if it is diagnosed early and radically treated. It is important to be aware of atypical cancer localizations in order to perform a proper diagnosis.
Adjuvant therapy; Curettage; GCT; Phenol; Ulna
Sacral schwannoma is a rare retrorectal tumor in adults. Postoperative sacral neurological deficit is difficult to avoid. Currently, there is no established consensus regarding best treatment options. We present the management and outcomes of sacral schwannoma in 4 patients treated with intralesional curettage and postoperative radiation. There were 3 women and one man (average age: 45.5 years) with long duration of lumbosacral pain with or without radiculopathy. Intralesional curettage was performed by posterior approach and adjuvant radiation therapy with dosage of 5000–6600 cGy was given after surgery. The mean follow-up time was 18 months (range 4–23 months). Symptoms of radiculopathy had decreased in all patients. The recent radiographic findings show evidence of sclerosis at the sacrum one year postoperatively, but the size was unchanged. Intralesional curettage and adjuvant radiation therapy can be used in the treatment of sacral schwannoma to relieve symptoms and preserve neurological function.
Management of large giant cell tumors of the proximal humerus is controversial because wide resection with reconstruction results in a poor functional outcome for most patients. We retrospectively reviewed the cases of six patients with Campanacci Grade III giant cell tumors of the proximal humerus to determine the feasibility of avoiding en bloc resections for large giant cell tumors in this location. We evacuated the tumor through curettage and then used burring (unless the remaining cavity was thinned and at risk for fracture) and phenolization, followed by packing of the defect with allograft cancellous bone. The mean age of the patients at surgery was 30 years, and the minimum followup was 2.5 years (mean, 5.6 years; range, 2.5–9.7 years). One of the six patients had local recurrence 1.2 years postoperatively and was treated with repeat intralesional surgery with no additional recurrence 5 years later. No other patient required additional treatment, had pulmonary metastases develop, or had progression to osteoarthritis. The mean Musculoskeletal Tumor Society and Toronto Extremity Salvage Score functional scores at last followup were 26 of 30 (range, 21–30) and 95% (range, 90%–100%), respectively. These functional scores are higher than reported scores for patients with segmental resection and reconstruction of the proximal humerus.
Level of Evidence: Level IV, therapeutic study. See the Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.
This study was designed to evaluate the feasibility and effectiveness of the use of anhydrous alcohol as an adjuvant treatment for giant cell tumours (GCTs) of long bone. Between October 1989 and January 2004, 42 GCT patients were treated and followed up for an average of 4.1 years (range 1–13 years). Mean patient age was 34 years (range 17–67 years). After curettage and additional burring, anhydrous alcohol was used as an adjuvant therapy in all patients before the bone defect was filled with bone graft or cement. Four patients (9.5%) experienced local recurrence. There were no alcohol-related complications. Recurrence-free probability was 87.6% at final follow-up (13 years) after index surgery by Kaplan–Meyer analysis. Our data suggest that anhydrous alcohol can be used as an effective safe adjuvant for the treatment of GCT of long bone.