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The Bone Cancer Awareness Trust was set up by the family and friends of Luke Bradwell, who passed away on the 3rd January 2012 after a valiant fight with Osteosarcoma. We aim to raise awareness of bone cancer to promote early diagnosis, as this is one of the most important factors influencing outcome.




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We are working with the Bone Cancer Research Trust to achieve this goal.

  • Each year in the UK there are about 500 people diagnosed with a form of primary bone cancer.
  • Primary bone cancer has a peak incidence between the ages of 10 - 24, but bone cancer can occur at any age.
  • The most common types of bone cancer for this age group are Osteosarcoma and Ewings Sarcoma.
  • The second most common type of bone cancer over all, after Osteosarcoma, is Chondrosarcoma, which is more common in middle aged to elderly people.
  • The main symptoms are bone pain, which can come and go at first, but may be more persistent at night, and sometimes swelling of the affected area.
  • These symptoms can be mistaken for a sports injury or growing pains
  • If you or a family member are experiencing any of these symptoms contact your doctor. When symptoms persist it is a good idea to ask your doctor for an x‑ray.
  • Symptoms like these often have other causes however early diagnosis of a bone cancer patient is a significant factor influencing results.


We want people to be empowered with information on primary bone cancer, in the hope that late diagnosis becomes a thing of the past. The first aim of the Trust is to provide bone cancer information leaflets to GP surgeries. On completion, our second aim is to continue the awareness campaign by providing secondary schools with this important information. We hope increased awareness will encourage individuals to seek medical attention sooner, as we believe early diagnosis can save limbs and lives.

Let's Talk About It

We are also working with the Teenage Cancer Trust who share similar goals in education and awareness.


Why is Early Diagnosis so Important?

The following quotes are included with the kind permission of NICE (National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence) who confirm our understanding of how vital the early diagnosis of a primary bone cancer is for patients.

NHS/NICE Referral Guidelines for Suspected Cancer

Page 51 - Bone Sarcomas (Osteosarcoma and Ewing's Sarcoma) (All Ages)

"Limbs are the most common site for bone tumours, especially around the knee in the case of osteosarcoma. Persistent localised bone pain and/or swelling requires an X-ray. If a bone tumour is suspected, an urgent referral should be made."

NHS/NICE Improving Outcomes for People with Sarcoma

Page 39 - Improving Diagnosis of Bone and Extremity Soft Tissue Sarcoma

"Public awareness of sarcomas is low and many studies have shown that some patients wait a considerable time after the onset of symptoms before seeking medical advice."

Page 30 - GP Information

"GPs also need a reliable source of information. This would cover a number of areas such as raising awareness of sarcoma; providing information."

Page 44 - Referral Delay

"Diagnostic uncertainty at the point of consultation to primary or secondary care can result in a delay in referral to the appropriate treatment centre. Several observational studies reporting referral delay were identified."

Page 45 - Diagnostic Delay and Outcome

"Several studies expressed the opinion that the increase in tumour size during a delay in diagnosis has a detrimental effect on treatment options and outcomes in patients with sarcoma."

Page 13 - Background

"Delays in diagnosis for both bone and STS are common. The median size on presentation for both bone and STS is 10 cm (Royal Orthopaedic Hospital: unpublished data 2005) earlier diagnosis would undoubtedly lead to improved outcomes in terms both of survival and of less-damaging surgery being required."

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© 2012, Bone Cancer Awareness Trust
Registered charity number: 1147133