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Early Detection, Diagnosis, and Staging TOPICS

Can osteosarcoma be found early?

At this time, there are no widely recommended screening tests for this cancer. (Screening is testing for cancer in people without any symptoms.)

Still, most osteosarcomas are found at an early stage, before they have clearly spread to other parts of the body. Symptoms such as bone pain or swelling often prompt a visit to a doctor. (For more on possible signs and symptoms of osteosarcoma, see the section “How is osteosarcoma diagnosed?”)

People with certain bone diseases or in families known to carry inherited conditions that raise the risk of this cancer (listed in “What are the risk factors for osteosarcoma?”) should talk with their doctors about the possible need for increased monitoring for this disease. This type of cancer usually does not run in families, but looking out for the early signs of cancer is important if it is to be treated successfully.

Last Medical Review: 01/08/2013
Last Revised: 02/06/2014