Oncologist-approved cancer information from the American Society of Clinical Oncology
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Ewing Family of Tumors - Childhood

This section has been reviewed and approved by the Cancer.Net Editorial Board, 5/2013

ON THIS PAGE: You will find some basic information about this group of tumors and the parts of the body they may affect. This is the first page of Cancer.Net’s Guide to the Ewing Family of Tumors. To see other pages, use the colored boxes on the right side of your screen. Think of those boxes as a roadmap to this full guide. Or, click “Next” at the bottom of each page.

Ewing family of tumors (EFT) is a group of cancers that affect the bones or nearby soft tissue. Cancer occurs when normal cells change and grow uncontrollably, forming a mass called a tumor. A tumor can be benign (noncancerous) or malignant (cancerous, meaning it can spread to other parts of the body). Depending on the type, EFT develops in different places. EFT includes:

  • Ewing tumor of the bones (also called Ewing sarcoma), the most common type of EFT
  • Extraosseous Ewing (EOE), a tumor that grows in soft tissues outside the bone
  • Peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumor (PPNET), a rare tumor found in the bones and soft tissues. This includes Askin's tumor, which is a PPNET of the chest wall.

EFT of the bone occurs most often in the leg, spine, rib, or pelvis. EFT of the soft tissue is usually found in the thigh, pelvis, spine, chest, or foot. Specifically, about 41% of EFT develops in a leg and foot, 26% in the pelvis, 16% in the chest wall, 9% in an arm or hand, 6% in the spine, and 2% in the skull.

This section covers EFT diagnosed in children and teenagers. For more information about EFT in adults, please read the Guide to Bone Cancer.

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  • ASCO Answers Fact Sheet: Read a one-page fact sheet (available in PDF) that offers an easy-to-print introduction to this type of cancer.

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