Enchondromas are Usually Harmless


Have you ever heard of an enchondroma? Pronounced en-kon-DRO-ma, this is a type of tumor that develops in the cartilage found inside your bones. Enchondromas typically do not cause pain or any other symptoms. As a result, they are usually discovered in the course of examination and treatment for another, unrelated, illness or injury. Here are some facts about enchondromas:

  • Enchondromas are typically located in the small bones of the feet and hands. The long bones of the arms and legs are also frequent sites.

  • Young men and women between 10 and 20 years old are most at risk of enchondromas.

  • Enchondromas are usually benign. That is, they do not become cancerous, although the risk of mutation increases when there are multiple tumors, or when the patient has an associated condition such as Ollier's disease or Maffucci's syndrome.

  • The exact cause of enchondromas is unknown, but they are believed to be the result of environmental factors. The prevailing theory is that they develop when cells turn into cartilage instead of bone.

In most cases, enchondromas do not require treatment. Your podiatrist will monitor your enchondroma and watch for changes. There are exceptions, however, such as when there are multiple tumors, causing the bone to become weakened or deformed and more likely to fracture. In such situations, foot and ankle surgery by a board-certified podiatrist like James M. McKee, DPM, FACFAS is the best course of action.

Do you have a concern about the health and wellness of your feet, ankles, or lower legs? With years of specialized training and experience, your podiatrist is the best qualified professional to diagnose and treat all injuries and illnesses of this part of your body. Schedule a visit with Dr. James M. McKee in Podiatry Group of Annapolis, P.A.’s comfortable office on Solomons Island Road. Call our staff at 410-224-4448 or click here to get started today.