Aneurysmal Bone Cyst

Aneurysmal Bone Cyst

Aneurysmal Bone Cyst

An aneurysmal bone cyst is a benign, blood-filled lesion in the bone that tends to expand or grow. While it is called a cyst, it is a true benign bone tumor surrounded by a thin bone wall. Aneurysmal bone cysts (ABC) can occur in any bone, but are most commonly found around the knee, pelvis, or spine.

Although they are not cancerous, aneurysmal bone cysts grow rapidly and treatment is recommended.

ABCs occur slightly more frequently in women than men and have a 10-15 percent recurrence rate with treatment.

Aneurysmal bone cysts may occur spontaneously or be a secondary reaction to another bone growth elsewhere in the body. Studies have shown a high incidence of accompanying tumors (particularly chondroblastoma and giant cell tumors) in 23 to 32 percent of patients with aneurysmal bone cysts.

Aneurysmal Bone Cyst Symptoms

Major symptoms of an aneurysmal bone cyst may include:

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Hardness
  • Deformity in the growth area
  • Feeling of warmth over the affected area
  • Decreased range of motion, weakness or stiffness

Treatment of Aneurysmal Bone Cyst

There are many treatment options for bone and soft tissue tumors, and some children will need a combination of these treatments. Treatment of aneurysmal bone cysts may include:

Intralesional curettage, which involves scraping the bone to completely remove the tumor and all cyst lining
Intraoperative adjuvants such as cryotherapy (liquid nitrogen), phenol (chemical), or cauterization (burning the tumor bed) used to remove microscopic tumor cells
Bone grafting, a surgical procedure to replace missing bone with artificial graft material or cadaver bone
Depending on the size and location of the aneurysmal bone cyst, your child may return home that day or spend one night in the hospital.

In some cases, it is recommended to use nonsurgical techniques to treat the tumor. When the cyst is in a hard-to-reach location, an intralesional injection or serial embolization performed by an interventional radiologist is often the best treatment.

Your doctor will recommend the best treatment for your child's condition.

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