Osteosarcoma (Osteogenic sarcoma or OS) is the most common primary bone tumor of childhood.
This tumor was first described by Sir James Paget (1814-1899) in association with Paget's disease of bone (elderly patients).
Sir James Paget:
In the 1960s amputation was the most common surgical procedure, and 80% of children would eventually die of metastastic disease within 5 years of diagnosis, even if they were clear of disease at presentation.
The combined use of chemotherapy and surgery has led to markedly improved survival rates, while advances in surgical techniques have led to better functional outcomes with limb salvage surgery.
The 5 year survival rate for children with osteosarcoma is currently 70-80%. Most children with this disease will be treated successfully and almost always keep their limb.