Current Environment:

Bone and soft tissue tumors form in the body’s connective tissue, which includes bone, cartilage, blood, and fat. Some, but not all, of these tumors are malignant or cancerous, meaning they have the ability to spread to other parts of the body. Malignant tumors are often called sarcomas.

Doctors, nurses, and other caregivers from the Bone and Soft Tissue Tumors Program care for children and teens with benign and malignant tumors, from diagnosis to treatment to follow-up. Our team uses the latest diagnostic approaches to identify treatments that improve your child’s quality of life now and into adulthood.

Dr. Mark Gebhardt and Dr. Megan Anderson

Learn about our patients and providers

"We’ve been treating these diseases for a long time and have a rich history of caring for patients with challenging conditions."

If your child’s tumor is benign, she will be cared for by an expert orthopedic group within Boston Children’s Hospital. Our pediatric orthopedic surgeons are nationally recognized for their expertise in caring for pediatric bone tumors and soft tissue tumors.

If your child’s tumor is malignant, the Bone and Soft Tissue Tumors Program at the Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center combines the expertise of Boston Children’s Hospital and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute for the comprehensive medical and surgical care of malignant bone and soft tissue tumors in children and teens.

Our approach

Our doctors are experts in the treatment of children with benign and malignant bone and soft tissue tumors.

We consider you and your child integral parts of the care team. We will work together with you to customize a state-of-the-art, multidisciplinary plan of care based on your child’s specific needs and diagnosis.

Your child’s care team may include pediatric:

  • orthopedic surgeons
  • oncologists
  • radiotherapists
  • surgeons
  • pathologists
  • radiologists
  • nurses
  • psychosocial clinicians
  • physical therapists

We’re here to answer your questions and to support you and your family every step of the way.

As you consider where to seek care for your child, it may help to know that research shows that children have better outcomes when surgeons with expertise in treating these conditions provide care.

Our expertise

As one of the nation’s largest referral centers, and one of the few centers in the country with extensive experience in limb salvage surgery, our renowned team of radiologists, pathologists, oncologists, and surgeons collaborate to provide the best care possible for children with benign musculoskeletal tumors, as well as comprehensive pediatric cancer treatment.

Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center offers a multidisciplinary treatment approach to care for children with malignant tumors. Because we are New England’s Phase I referral center for the Children’s Oncology Group — an international consortium of cancer treatment centers that conducts studies of pediatric cancers — we also offer clinical trials that are unavailable at other regional centers. Further, we provide long-term pediatric cancer treatment and support through Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s David B. Perini Jr. Quality of Life Clinic.

Advances in care

Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center was one of the first childhood cancer care centers in the country to use adjuvant chemotherapy and to perform limb salvage surgery for pediatric oncology patients with osteosarcoma, an aggressive bone tumor.

Over the last three decades, our center has led groundbreaking research and offered advanced treatments for children with all types of bone and soft tissue tumors. For example, our team is researching the effectiveness of non-invasive vs. open treatments for aneurysmal bone cysts and desmoid fibromatosis.

In addition to providing state-of-the-art multidisciplinary care, we incorporate genomic characterization of all bone and soft tissue tumors in order to advance knowledge and identify genetic alterations that could inform personalized precision treatments.

Our center also has been involved in a long-term follow-up study to learn about quality of life and outcomes for limb salvage surgery, rotationplasty, and amputation for children who have had sarcoma of the lower leg.