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Guide To Bone Cancer Causes And Risk Factors

Radiation Therapy

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An individual who has undergone radiation therapy for the treatment of a previous disease has a greater risk of developing bone cancer. Prior radiation therapy is a relatively rare cause of bone cancer, but it does happen. Typically, bone cancers that develop due to previous radiation therapy will manifest between one and two decades following the last radiation treatment. For previous radiation therapy to cause carcinogenesis in bone, it must have been administered to the area in question in very high doses. The high doses of radiation cause damage to the bone tissue that takes many years for the patient's body to fully repair. During the repair and regeneration process that occurs when parts of the bone have become damaged, the tissue undergoes multiple changes. The cellular DNA damage caused by the radiation treatment itself is compounded with the changes that follow it to increase the patient's risk of developing cancer in the affected area of the bone. The mechanisms involved in bone remodeling and repair processes provide a window of opportunity for a cancer-causing mutation to occur in the cellular DNA.

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