While other forms of cancer can start elsewhere and spread to the bone, bone cancer is notable because it originates within a bone and can spread to other parts of the body. By far the most common type of bone cancer is known as osteosarcoma. Osteosarcoma tends to affect longer bones, such as the tibia and the bones in the upper leg and arms. Because osteosarcoma tends to develop from the cells that help to grow bones, it is a common cancer in teens and children, whose bones, particularly their leg bones, are still growing.
Leg pain is generally the earliest symptom of this disease. The pain might be worse during exercise or at night. Many times this is ignored because it is attributed to either muscle strain or growing pains. The difference is that this pain will not improve with rest.
Another symptom of bone cancer of the tibia is swelling. The swelling may cover the entire leg or it could be more localized. If it has grown large enough, the tumor might also appear as a swelling.
Because of pain or weakness in the limb, which is caused by the cancer, the person might develop a slight limp in the affected extremity.
Fatigue and Anemia
People with bone cancer may feel unusually tired and may be anemic due to the loss of red blood cells. This is usually due to iron deficiency.
One of the frequent symptoms of cancer is a fever. Any unexplained fever, even a low-grade fever, that persists despite treatment could be a sign of something serious.
Fracture of the Tibia
A fracture is often the way that this kind of bone cancer is discovered. This usually occurs because the disease has weakened the bone to the point that it is more brittle than usual.