Giant Cell Tumor of Bone

Kevin A. Raskin J Am Acad Orthop Surg February 2013 ; 21 Abstract

Giant cell tumor (GCT) of bone is one type of giant cell-rich lesion of bone. This benign mesenchymal tumor has characteristic multinuclear giant cells. Mononuclear stromal cells are the physiologically active and diagnostic cell type. Most GCTs are located in the epiphyseal regions of long bones. The axial skeleton—primarily the sacrum—is a secondary site of involvement. Most patients present with pain, swelling, joint effusion, and disability in the third and fourth decades of life. Imaging studies are important for tumor staging and radiographic grading. Typically, these clinically active but slow-growing tumors are confined to bone, with relatively well-defined radiographic borders. Monostotic disease is most common. Metastatic spread to the lungs is rare. Extended intralesional curettage with or without adjuvant therapy is the primary treatment choice. Local recurrence is seen in ≤20% of cases, and a second local intralesional procedure is typically sufficient in cases that are detected early. Medical therapies include diphosphonates and denosumab. Denosumab has been approved for use in osteoporosis as well as breast and prostate cancer metastatic to bone. Medical therapy and radiotherapy can alter the management of GCT of bone, especially in multifocal disease, local recurrences, and bulky central/axial disease

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