Giant cell tumor of bone arising in long bones possibly originates from the metaphyseal region

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Giant cell tumor of bone (GCTB) is a primary benign bone tumor with a locally aggressive character. Definitive descriptions of the site of origin for this type of tumor are not available. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the site of origin of GCTB of long bones with regards to epiphyseal lines by means of radiographic examination. For that purpose, plain X‑ray scans of 71 GCTBs arising in long bones were retrospectively reviewed. The tumor locations were the distal femur in 31 cases, proximal femur in 11 cases, proximal tibia in 13 cases, distal radius in 6 cases, proximal humerus in 5 cases and proximal fibula in 5 cases. The vertical center (VC) of the tumor was determined with X‑ray anteroposterior view, and the correlation between the VC and the epiphyseal line, and between the distance from the epiphyseal line to the VC and tumor area or volume were analyzed using a regression model equation based on scatter plot diagrams. The VC of the tumor was located in the metaphyseal region in 57 cases, in the epiphyseal line in 11 cases and in the epiphyseal region in 3 cases. In cases of GCTB located in the distal femur or proximal tibia, significant correlations between the distance from the VC to the epiphyseal line and tumor area or volume were identified. The site of origin of GCTB was estimated to be located in the metaphyseal region. GCTB often occurs in mature patients, which renders it challenging to estimate the true site of origin of this lesion, since the metaphyseal line has disappeared in mature patients. The results of the present study suggest that GCTB possibly originates in the metaphyseal region.


  • Oncology Letters

    Oncology Letters 11(4), 2629-2634, 2016-02

    Spandidos Publications


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