Osteosarcoma is the most common type of bone cancer in children and young adults. It usually occurs in the long bones, such as the arms or legs, though it can also occur in the pelvis, spine, jaw or other locations in the body.

Treatments for osteosarcoma in children

Treatments for osteosarcoma may involve a combination of therapies including surgery, radiation and/or chemotherapy. In most cases, children receive chemotherapy before surgery (neoadjuvant), a surgical procedure to remove the tumor and additional chemotherapy after surgery (adjuvant). Treatment options will vary greatly, depending on your child's situation. Your child's doctor and other members of your care team will discuss the options with you in-depth. Prompt medical attention and aggressive therapy are important for the best prognosis.

How Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s approaches osteosarcoma

Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center provides comprehensive medical and surgical care for children and adolescents with bone tumors, such as osteosarcoma. Our multidisciplinary approach through our Bone and Soft Tissue Tumors Program ensures in-depth discussion of each case and personalized treatment plans for every patient. We integrate expertise from pediatric oncologists, oncologic orthopedists, pediatric specialists, psychologists, social workers, and oncologic surgeons.

Learn more

Find more in-depth information on osteosarcoma on the Dana-Farber/Boston Children's website, including answers to:

  • What causes osteosarcoma?
  • What are the symptoms of osteosarcoma?
  • How is osteosarcoma diagnosed?
  • How is osteosarcoma treated?
  • What is the long-term outlook for children with osteosarcoma?
  • What follow-up care will my child need?
  • What is the latest research on osteosarcoma?

Clinical trials

For many children with rare or hard-to-treat conditions, clinical trials provide new options.