The cause of osteochondroma is unknown. One type may be passed down through genes in families.
Symptoms of osteochondroma may be:
- A hard, bony lump that may:
- Be painless, but the tissue around it may become irritated and painful
- Get bigger
- A long bone that breaks with less than the usual amount of force
- Pressure on nearby structures, including nerves
The doctor will ask about the child's symptoms and health history. Symptoms and a physical exam may point to osteochondroma. They may also have:
Diagnosis is confirmed by imaging tests, such as:
- CT scan
- MRI scan
The child's doctor may do a biopsy . A tissue sample is taken and checked to see if the lump is cancerous.
The goals of osteochondoma treatment are:
- Monitoring—If the lump is not causing pain or other problems, it may be left alone. The person and doctor will keep track of it for any changes or new problems.
- Surgery—The lump is removed if it causes pain or other complications. It is also removed if there is a chance of cancer. If the bone is weak, it can be rebuilt. Rebuilding the bone is done over a long period of time.
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
Edits to original content made by Denver Health.
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