In order to improve cancer care in Japan further, it is now required for orthopaedic
surgeons to get actively involved in managing locomotive organs such as bones, muscles
and nerves in cancer patients. In 2018, the Japanese Orthopaedic Association (JOA)
conducted a questionnaire survey to investigate the current status of cancer treatment
at the orthopaedic training facilities certified by the JOA. We analyzed the results
of that questionnaire survey, focusing on the data from the core hospitals for cancer
care (designated cancer hospitals), to clarify the involvement of orthopaedic surgeons
in cancer treatment.
Materials and methods
A nationwide survey was conducted in the orthopaedic training facilities certified
by the JOA using an online questionnaire from March 15th to 31st, 2018. To clarify
the involvement of orthopaedic surgeons in cancer treatment, we analyzed the results
of that questionnaire survey, focusing on the data from the designated cancer hospitals
From the questionnaire survey, it became clear that 24% of the orthopaedic training
facilities certiﬁed by the JOA are designated cancer hospitals. There were significant
differences concerning cancer treatment and the prospect of orthopaedic surgeons'
involvement in the treatment for bone metastases between institutions classified according
to number of both certified orthopaedic surgeons by the JOA and specialists for bone
and soft tissue tumors. In addition, in 45% of the designated cancer hospitals, orthopaedic
surgeons treated bone metastases that occur in cancer patients, but in the rest of
the institutions, orthopaedic surgeons did not yet adequately respond.
In order to further improve the locomotive function and quality of life (QOL) in cancer
patients, it was seemed to be necessary that all medical professionals engaged in
cancer treatment, including orthopaedic surgeons, recognize the importance of locomotive
management for cancer patients. In addition, the results of this study suggested that
the presence of more than six certified orthopaedic surgeons by the JOA, including
one or more specialists for bone and soft tissue tumors, may be able to create an
environment conducive to the involvement of orthopaedic surgeons in cancer treatment
at the facility.