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Ewing sarcoma is a cancer that occurs primarily in the bone or soft tissue, most frequently in the long bones such as the femur (thigh), tibia (shin), or humerus (upper arm). It can involve the muscle and the soft tissues around the tumor as well. Ewing sarcoma cells can also spread to other areas of the body including the bone marrow, lungs, kidneys, heart, adrenal gland, and other soft tissues.

Ewing sarcoma is a very rare cancer in adults. However, Ewing sarcoma accounts for up to 2 percent of childhood cancers. About 225 children and adolescents are diagnosed with Ewing sarcoma in the United States each year. It is the second most common malignant bone tumor in children and adolescents. Ewing sarcoma most often occurs in children between the ages of ten and 20. More males are affected than females.

The following are the most common symptoms of Ewing sarcoma. However, each individual may experience symptoms differently. Symptoms may include:

  • Pain around the site of the tumor
  • Swelling and/or redness around the site of the tumor
  • Fever
  • Weight loss, decreased appetite
  • Fatigue
  • Paralysis and/or incontinence (if the tumor is in the spinal region)
  • Symptoms related to nerve compression from tumor (e.g., numbness, tingling, paralysis, etc.)

Ewing sarcoma is difficult to distinguish from other similar tumors. Diagnosis is often made by excluding all other common solid tumors, and by the use of genetic studies.