What are Ewing tumors?

Ewing tumors are a family of tumors which are a group of cancers that start in the bones or nearby soft tissues. Each type of Ewing tumor shares some similarities in either look or behavior. These tumors can develop at any age, but they are most common in the early teen years. Key statistics for Ewing tumors:


·         There are about 225 children and teenagers in the United States that are diagnosed with a Ewing tumor each year. Most of them develop a type of Ewing tumor called a Ewing sarcoma, the most common type.

·         Ewing tumors make up about one percent of all childhood cancers.

·         Most Ewing tumors are diagnosed in teenagers, but they can also affect children and young adults in their 20s and 30s.

·         The five-year survival rate is the percentage of people who survive at least five years after the tumor is found. The five-year survival rate for people with a Ewing tumor that that has not spread is about 70 percent.

There are three main types of Ewing tumors: Ewing sarcoma of bone, extraosseous ewing tumor, and peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumor. A Ewing sarcoma is a type of Ewing tumor that starts in the bone. It is the most common tumor among the three main types of Ewing tumors. An extraosseous ewing tumor is a type of Ewing tumor that starts in soft tissues around bones. These types of tumors are similar to Ewing sarcomas in that they look and act just like them. Peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumor is a type of Ewing tumor that is a rare childhood cancer. It starts in bone or soft tissue and is also similar to Ewing sarcomas and peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumors.

Most Ewing tumors occur in the bones. The most common locations in which Ewing tumors are found include the pelvis (also known as the hip bones), the chest wall (such as the ribs or shoulder blades), and the legs (mainly in the middle of the long bones).

There are three main risk factors that increase your risk for developing Ewing tumors. The risk factors that increase your risk for developing Ewing tumors include race/ethnicity, age, and gender. In regards to race/ethnicity, Ewing tumors are much more common among Caucasians compared to other racial groups. They are less common among Asian Americans and are very rare among African Americans. It is unclear as to why this is. In regards to age, Ewing tumors may affect anyone at any age, however, they are most common among teenagers. They are less common among young adults and young children, and are rare in older adults. In regards to gender, Ewing tumors are slightly more common among women than men.