According to abbreviationfinder, BC stands for bone cyst. A bone cyst is a benign, fluid-filled, tumor-like lesion on the bone. Bone cysts often do not cause any symptoms and are therefore only discovered by chance as part of another disease. Treatment is not necessary in every case, but depends on the individual case.
What is a bone cyst?
Bone cysts usually do not cause any noticeable symptoms. However, a cyst in the area of the bones increases the risk of fractures.
A bone cyst is a benign, non-cancerous change in the bone. They consist of fluid-filled cavities in the bone, which can vary in size.
Bone cysts commonly affect children up to the age of 15, although boys are affected more often than girls. In many cases, bone cysts do not cause any symptoms and are therefore only discovered by accident during examinations. In other cases, the bone cysts grow together completely unnoticed at the end of growth, have never caused any symptoms and are therefore not noticed.
Even when a bone cyst is discovered, treatment is not always necessary. If there is no risk of secondary diseases, you can simply wait until the cyst grows together. Bone cysts are divided into juvenile bone cysts (single-chambered) and aneurysmal bone cysts (multiple-chambered).
The exact causes for the development of a bone cyst are unknown. However, it is believed that injury to the bone or blood clots can trigger bone cysts. Inflammation or developmental disorders are also considered possible causes.
Bone cysts primarily affect children up to around the age of 15, but they also occur more rarely in young adulthood. Most often, bone cysts occur in children up to. 10 years of age. Bone cysts in children most commonly occur in the humerus or femur.
Since they very often do not cause any problems, they are often only discovered by accident. For example, if there is a broken bone and an X-ray examination is therefore necessary. In some cases, bone cysts can also be responsible for a bone fracture because they reduce the stability of the bone.
Symptoms, Ailments & Signs
Bone cysts usually do not cause any noticeable symptoms. However, a cyst in the area of the bones increases the risk of fractures. The growth affects the stability of the affected bone, and the blood flow in the surrounding area can be reduced or completely cut off by the cyst.
If no blood can get into the surrounding tissue, serious complications can develop, including necrosis. In isolated cases, bone cysts can cause pain. Those affected then suffer from an indefinable, pulling pain, which occurs primarily with stimuli such as cold or heat. Large cysts can cause persistent pain and affect well-being.
Visible swelling or reddening of the skin rarely occurs. However, these are usually not associated with pain and subside quickly. Bone cysts in the head, spine, genitals and knees can cause various functional disorders. Bone cysts usually form suddenly and are only discovered much later.
They grow quickly, but are relatively harmless due to their benign form. They usually connect to the surrounding tissue as soon as the growth phase is complete. The bone cysts are then no longer visible on the X-ray image.
Diagnosis & History
Bone cysts usually do not cause any symptoms for those affected, which is why a doctor is rarely consulted about them. If a bone fracture occurs, a bone cyst can be responsible and is often discovered when an existing fracture is diagnosed more precisely using an X-ray examination. A bone cyst can be seen on the x-ray as a bright spot.
If a bone cyst is discovered, it is crucial whether this cyst poses a risk to the bone. This is always the case when the bone is restricted in its stability by the bone cyst and a bone fracture is therefore imminent. Even if the bone cyst is responsible for an existing fracture, treatment should be given.
In all other cases, therapy is not necessary since most bone cysts disappear on their own as they grow. By the end of the growth phase at the latest, bone cysts are no longer recognizable.
A bone cyst does not always lead to complications or limitations. It is usually benign and therefore does not always need to be treated. Those affected can suffer from developmental disorders or movement disorders and limitations in everyday life due to the bone cyst. In most cases, however, there is no pain.
Patients also experience increased fractures, making them easier and easier to occur. The stability of the bones and thus of the entire body decreases. As a rule, the person concerned is also less resilient. If the cyst is not dangerous for the bone, it is usually not removed or treated further.
Most of the time, the cysts are only discovered by chance during check-ups. However, if there are complaints, they can also be treated with the help of cortisone. There are no complications. Surgical treatment is also possible. The patient’s life expectancy is not reduced by this disease. Only in rare cases are there restrictions in the patient’s everyday life.
When should you go to the doctor?
If you break a bone repeatedly and have pain or swelling around your bones, you may have a bone cyst. Medical advice is required if the symptoms significantly affect well-being, do not go away on their own, or get worse within a short period of time. Chronic complaints must always be clarified and, if necessary, treated by a specialist. Otherwise, serious complications can arise. If there are other symptoms, it is best to see a doctor on the same day.
In the event of recurring complaints for which no cause can be found, a specialist must be consulted. Children who complain of pain in or in their bones should see a pediatrician. Otherwise, the first point of contact should always be your family doctor or an orthopaedist. Close consultation with the doctor is necessary during the treatment. If side effects and interactions occur after taking the prescribed medication, this must be clarified, as must recurring pain and other symptoms.
Treatment & Therapy
Treatment for a bone cyst depends on its size and how it can affect the body. In many cases, no treatment is necessary, as consequential damage from the bone cyst can be largely ruled out.
If there is an increased risk of a bone fracture due to the bone cyst, appropriate therapies should be initiated to eliminate the cyst and thus prevent a bone fracture.
Juvenile bone cysts can be treated very well with cortisone. The cortisone is injected directly into the cyst and causes the bone cyst to gradually disappear. In some cases, it may be necessary to surgically remove the bone cyst and fill the cavity with bone material. This measure is the treatment method that promises the most success. In addition, so-called decompression screws can also be inserted into the bones. These ensure that the bone cyst heals.
However, an aneurysmal bone cyst often requires therapy to prevent permanent damage to the bone. Since an aneurysmal bone cyst, in contrast to the juvenile bone cyst, is very well supplied with blood, there is very strong growth in this type. The bone substance is increasingly used up and the bone is thus damaged and unstable.
This is why aneurysmal bone cysts can also cause pain. In these cases, treatment of the bone cyst is recommended. In most cases, this is a surgical procedure in which the cyst is emptied and filled with bone material or cement. However, the aneurysmal bone cyst is a very rare disease.
Outlook & Forecast
The prognosis for a bone cyst is usually good. It is a benign change that is usually only diagnosed as an incidental finding in children and adolescents. The cyst rarely causes physical symptoms. Therefore, some of those affected may have bone cysts in their organism for a long time and still not notice any impairments in everyday life.
A shortening of lifespan or other secondary diseases are also not given with this disorder. Often no treatment is required or performed due to the low need for action. In a large number of patients, the diagnosis is based on a broken bone. This may have been triggered by a cyst. With early and professional medical care, the broken bone heals completely within a few weeks or months without further complications. If you have not already done so yourself, the existing cyst will be removed during the treatment. There are usually no residues or other inconveniences.
Despite thecheapprognosis, the cyst may develop again as the child develops. The prospects of recovery and the course of the disease remain positive in these cases. If the bone cyst is noticed, it can be removed if desired.
Since the causes of bone cysts have not been clearly clarified, there can be no direct recommendation for prevention. The causes that are suspected of triggering a bone cyst are also difficult or impossible to influence.
The removal of the bone cyst is often uncomplicated, so that extensive aftercare is not necessary in many cases. Nevertheless, there are some points to consider after an operation. Immediately after the operation, it is important to look out for signs of a rare infection in the operated area. The typical symptoms such as redness, overheating, swelling and throbbing pain are reason for a visit to the doctor. This is especially true if you have a fever. The earlier an infection is detected, the better it can usually be treated.
The second point of aftercare concerns the functionality of the affected bone. Wearing a cast and protecting the affected area should really only be carried out for as long as the treating doctor recommends. He can estimate when the bone is again sufficiently resilient for the demands of everyday life, work and leisure time.
You can do that yourself
In the case of a bone cyst, the person affected usually has no special options for self-help. However, the further treatment of such a cyst depends on its position and extent, although treatment or removal is not necessary in every case. Bone cysts are usually treated with cortisone, which results in a positive course of the disease. However, those affected should avoid broken bones and thus dangerous sports or activities in general.
If the bone cyst causes pain, painkillers can also be taken. These should not be taken over a longer period of time, otherwise they can damage the stomach. The doctor may also give the patient a local pain-relieving injection to relieve the symptoms.
If the bone cyst leads to psychological problems, talking to other patients or close friends and family is a good idea. Exchanging information with other patients can often make everyday life more pleasant. The sense of achievement of other people can also solve psychological problems and accelerate the healing of the disease.