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Tenosynovial Giant Cell Tumors (TSGCTs)

What are tenosynovial giant cell tumors?

Tenosynovial giant cell tumors (TSGCTs) are a group of noncancerous tumors that affect the tendon sheath, bursae, and synovium. All of these things are involved with the tendons. When tumors grow on them, they can cause damage. 

What are the symptoms of tenosynovial giant cell tumors?

The location of the tumors can influence the symptoms that are experienced, but there are common symptoms. These include:

  • Pain and swelling in the affected area
  • Stiffness
  • Instability in affected joints
  • Locking sensation in the joints

If left untreated, these tumors can cause damage and degeneration that leads to chronic disease and low function. 

What causes tenosynovial giant cell tumors?

A chromosomal translocation causes this condition; regions on chromosomes one and two break off and rearrange. This switch causes an overproduction of colony stimulating factor 1, which goes on to make up the majority of the tumors. Medical professionals are unsure as to how this translocation happens. 

How are tenosynovial giant cell tumors diagnosed?

Doctors will identify the characteristic symptoms, look through a detailed patient history, and perform a clinical evaluation. Tests will also be performed, including X-rays, MRIs, biopsies, and tests of the synovial fluid. A diagnosis is not often made in the early stages, as symptoms are vague and mild. 

What are the treatments for tenosynovial giant cell tumors?

Surgery is the major treatment for this condition, although there is a chance of recurrence. At times radiation therapy will be used as an adjunct treatment. There is also an FDA approved treatment, Turalio. 

Where can I find out more about tenosynovial giant cell tumors?

TSGCTs Articles