Management of aggressive benign and malignant bone tumors of the shoulder region.

R. W. Hsu*, H. N. Shih, K. Y. Hsu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review


BACKGROUND: The shoulder girdle is one of the most common sites of aggressive malignant and benign bone tumors. Curative resections and sparing of the limb are possible. However, reconstruction methods remain a challenge and the functional results vary. METHODS: Fourteen patients with aggressive benign or malignant bone tumors about the shoulder girdle who were treated with surgical resection with possible need for reconstructions were retrospectively analyzed. There were 8 men and 6 women. Their ages ranged from 15 to 70 years; the mean age at operation was 36 years. Ten patients had malignant bone tumors and four had extensive giant-cell tumors. A variety of reconstructive procedures were performed after resection of the tumors. The choice of procedure depended on the type of resection and the needs of the patients. Supplementary chemotherapy or radiotherapy was undertaken after surgical procedures in 9 patients. RESULTS: The length of follow up ranged from 16 months to 10 years. The functional results were described and graded quantitatively according to the functional rating system of the Musculoskeletal Tumor Society. Overall, 6 patients achieved excellent and good shoulder functions at follow-up examination, while 8 acquired fair or poor functional results. Four patients died from lung metastasis, while 10 survived and are disease free. Resection of the glenoid cavity and the proximal part of the humerus with loss of the abductor mechanism resulted in poor function of the shoulder. CONCLUSION: The choice of treatment options depended upon the staging of tumors, the extent of resection, the needs of individual patients, the preservation and reconstruction of rotator cuff, the experience of surgeons, and the facilities at the hospital. The functional results were related to the area of involvement and the type of resection. The preservation of the abductor mechanism provided good functional results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)52-60
Number of pages9
JournalChang Gung Medical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - 03 1999


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