The man was diagnosed with chondrosarcoma, a bone cancer which develops from the cartilage cells of the bone.

Cancerous bone irradiated over 80km away and reimplanted to save Bengaluru mans leg
Health Health Saturday, July 27, 2019 - 18:24

When 30-year-old Naresh* was first diagnosed with chondrosarcoma, he devastated thinking that the bone cancer would cost him his leg. However, doctors from this Bengaluru hospital have managed to save his leg by taking him up for a procedure where the affected bone is removed, radiated and then re-implanted, as per a report by Sunitha Rao R in the Times of India. This procedure is called extracorporeal irradiation (ECI) and has allowed for Naresh to retain his leg.

“[ECI] is not a procedure that we opt to do for all patients, it’s quite rare and is a very specific treatment for particular forms of bone cancer. We have done it a few times on patients who were eligible, such as this man who was young enough and his cancer not quite aggressive, that we were able to take him up for this procedure,” says Dr Anil Kumar, Lead Consultant in the Radiation Oncology department at Fortis Hospital in Bengaluru.

Dr Anil and team

Naresh was diagnosed with chondrosarcoma — a bone cancer which develops from the cartilage cells of the bone. Cartilage is a bone tissue which helps in the growth and development process. Chondrosarcoma makes up for 20 per cent of all bone tumours, though bone tumours as a whole make up for less than 1 per cent of all adult cancers. Generally, in cases of any bone tumours, doctors often turn to radiation therapy. In some cases, studies have shown that ECI has high success rates.

“Essentially what we do is that instead of exposing the patient to the radiation all over, we remove the part of the bone which is affected, and irradiate only that specific part and then replace the bone back into the patient,” adds the doctor.

Naresh was admitted to Prakriya Hospital on Tumakuru Road in Bengaluru. A group of doctors led by Dr Srinivas CH, an orthopaedic oncologist (bone cancer specialist), proceeded to remove the affected portion of Naresh’s pelvic bone and transported it via green corridor all the way to Bannerghatta Road’s Fortis Hospital (84 kilometres away). The bone was irradiated at Fortis, then taken back to Prakriya via the green corridor again, all while Naresh remained on the operating table.

“When I first reached out to the doctor with excruciating pain, they diagnosed it as bone cancer after a series of tests. I was devastated, but they did reassure me patiently about the new advances available and about this procedure in particular. I trusted them and said ok for the surgery. They have saved my life and leg,” says Naresh.

Doctors expect that he will make a full recovery and will be able to walk and use his leg normally.

*Name changed

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