Bone metastasis occurs when cancer cells spread from their original site to a bone. Nearly all types of cancer can spread (metastasize) to the bones. But some types of cancer are particularly likely to spread to bone, including breast cancer and prostate cancer.
Bone metastasis can occur in any bone but more commonly occurs in the pelvis and spine. Bone metastasis may be the first sign that you have cancer, or bone metastasis may occur years after cancer treatment.
Bone metastasis can cause pain and broken bones. With rare exceptions, cancer that has spread to the bones can't be cured. Treatments can help reduce pain and other symptoms of bone metastases.
Apr. 27, 2012
- Walsh D, et al. Palliative Medicine. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2008. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05674-8..X5001-4&isbn=978-0-323-05674-8&uniqId=325267977-3. Accessed March 23, 2012.
- Abeloff MD, et al. Abeloff's Clinical Oncology. 4th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier; 2008. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/208746819-4/0/1709/0.html. Accessed March 23, 2012.
- Canale ST, et al. Campbell's Operative Orthopaedics. 11th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2008. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/208746819-4/0/1584/0.html. Accessed April 3, 2012.
- Browner BD, et al. Skeletal Trauma. 4th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2009. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-1-4160-2220-6..X1000-6&isbn=978-1-4160-2220-6&uniqId=327645813-3. Accessed April 3, 2012.
- Paes FM, et al. Radiopharmaceuticals: When and how to use them to treat metastatic bone pain. Supportive Oncology. 2011;9:197.
- Rosenthal D, et al. Critical review of the state of the art in interventional oncology: Benign and metastatic disease involving bone. Radiology. 2012;262:765.
- Metastatic cancer. National Cancer Institute. http://cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Sites-Types/metastatic. Accessed March 23, 2012.
- Moynihan TJ (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. April 9, 2012.
You Are ... The Campaign for Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit organization. Make a difference today.