Background: Patients with musculoskeletal tumors in developing countries often present late to the hospital and this poses serious challenges to the management, especially for malignant tumors. This study aims to highlight the various types of musculoskeletal extremity tumors seen in a Nigerian tertiary health center during the study period, the challenges encountered in managing them, and the outcome of the management.
Materials and Methods: A prospective study in which all consenting patients with musculoskeletal extremity tumors who presented to the center from April 2015 to March 2017 were recruited.
Results: Seventyâ€‘two patients were managed during the study period. The mean age was 22.1 ± 4.5 years and the age group most affected was the 11–20 years group, n = 22 (30.6%). Maleâ€‘toâ€‘female ratio was 1.6:1. The femur was the most commonly involved bone. Forty tumors were benign while 32 were malignant tumors. Osteochondroma was the most common benign tumor while osteosarcoma was the most common malignant tumor. The challenges encountered during the management were a late presentation, poverty, and traditional bonesetter intervention before the presentation. Patients with benign tumor had excision with good outcome in all. Twenty (62.5%) of the patients with a malignant tumor had the ablative procedure, two of these 20 patients died within 6 months of treatment, while 12 (37.5%) of the patients with malignant tumor refused the treatment.
Conclusion: Management of musculoskeletal extremity tumors is highly challenging in this part of the country, especially the malignant types, due to the challenges mentioned. There is a need for more awareness about the disease, the Government should subsidize the cost of management of this disease, and more specialty training of personnel is necessary for appropriate management of the diseases.
Keywords: Extremity, musculoskeletal, tumor.
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