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What are adamantinomas?

Adamantinomas are slow-growing cancerous bone tumors that form primarily in the tibia (shin bone) but occasionally in the jaw, forearm, hands, or feet. About 20 percent of the time, these tumor spread to the lungs or nearby lymph nodes.

These rare tumors, which most often affect teenage boys and young men, usually occur after bones stop growing and require aggressive treatment. While there is no known cause, patients with adamantinoma have usually sustained trauma to the affected area.

What are the symptoms of adamantinomas?

The symptoms of adamantinoma may appear over a short period of time or may occur for six months or more. The most common are:

  • pain (sharp or dull) at the tumor site
  • swelling and/or redness at the tumor site
  • increased pain with activity or lifting
  • limping
  • decreased movement of the affected limb

How we care for adamantinomas

Children and young adults with adamantinoma are treated at Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center through our Bone and Soft Tissue Tumors Program.

Adamantinoma | Diagnosis & Treatment

How are adamantinomas diagnosed?

In most cases, an injury brings a child to the doctor, where an X-ray may show a bone abnormality. In addition to a physical examination, other diagnostic procedures include:

After all tests are completed, doctors will be able to outline the best treatment options.

What are the treatment options for adamantinomas?

The best treatment option for adamantinoma is surgery because these tumors don’t generally respond to chemotherapy or radiation therapy. Surgery may include limb salvage surgery — to help preserve the limb by removing the tumor and some healthy tissue surrounding it — or amputation if the tumor involves major nerves or blood vessels.

Adamantinoma | Programs & Services