Surgical complications are frequent with giant cell tumor of bone; recurrence is the best known and most widely studies; other causes of failure have been less well investigated. We therefore performed a retrospective study to identify and assess the main reasons for surgical revision.
Recurrence is the main cause of surgical revision in giant cell tumor of bone, but other complications, such as mechanical issues or infection, are underestimated.
Patients and methods
A single-center retrospective study included 192 patients (included from 2000 to 2016) undergoing first giant cell tumor of bone surgery in a bone tumor reference center. Surgery consisted in curettage for 152 patients (79%) and resection for 40 (21%). The 3 main reconstruction techniques were filling (136 patients; 71%), prosthesis (18 patients; 9%), and fusion (14 patients: 7%). Filling used cement in 9 cases (7%) and bone graft in 127 (93%). Cumulative incidence functions were calculated.
There were 171 revision procedures in 92 patients: 43 for mechanical reasons, 30 for infection, 86 for tumor recurrence, 12 for other causes. Cumulative incidence of revision at 10years was 36% (95% CI: 27–44) for recurrence, 26% (95% CI: 17–36) for mechanical causes, and 13% (95% CI: 9–19) for infection, for overall cumulative incidence of revision of 61% (95% CI: 50–69).
Risk of all-cause surgical revision in giant cell tumor of bone was 61% at 10years, with recurrence accounting for only half of cases.
Level of evidence
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Keywords : Giant cell tumor of bone, Bone tumor, Tumor recurrence, Bone curettage