Forequarter amputation (for chondrosarcoma)
Forequarter amputation removes the upper limb, scapula and lateral shoulder girdle en-bloc to achieve eradication of malignant tumours when limb-salvage is not possible.
Radiotherapy may be considered for patients with radio-sensitive primary or metastatic tumours, but chondrosarcomas are radio-insensitive and are considered a surgical disease with no real non-operative alternatives to surgical excision.
Patients should undergo detailed pre-operative staging and counselling prior to surgery, including pre-operative assessment at a limb-fitting centre to aid post-operative rehabilitation.
Author: Mr Jonathan Stevenson FRCS (Tr & Orth)
Institution: The Royal Orthopaedic Hospital ,Birmingham ,UK.