Encyclopedia of Cancer

Living Edition
| Editors: Manfred Schwab

Bone Metastasis

  • Robert L. Satcher
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27841-9_7224-1



A metastasis is a tumor that is established by the spread of cancer from the part of the body where it started (primary site) to another part of the body (Mundy 2002). Bone metastases consist of a solid mass inside the bone that spread from a distant tumor. They usually cause pain (Jimenez-Andrade et al. 2010). Metastases can occur in any bone in the body, but are most often found in bones near the center of the body, such as the spine, pelvis, ribs, upper femur, upper arm, and skull. Once cancer has spread to the bones, it is rarely able to be cured (Coleman 2006; Mundy 2002).


There are approximately 100,000 cancer patients diagnosed with bone metastasis in the USA each year. The usual presenting symptom is pain characterized by a dull, constant ache with periodic spikes of incident pain (Coleman et al. 2008). The bone is the third most common location for metastasis, after...


Prostate Cancer Bone Metastasis Spinal Cord Compression Kidney Cancer Skeletal Metastasis 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Orthopaedic OncologyUniversity of Texas, M.D. Anderson Cancer CenterHoustonUSA