When Does Cancer Spread To Bone Tissue?

Nia Rouseberg Author: Nia Rouseberg Time for reading: ~3 minutes Last Updated: October 26, 2022
When Does Cancer Spread To Bone Tissue?

In this article, learn more about When Does Cancer Spread To Bone Tissue?. As you know, metastatic cancer spreads to nearby healthy areas of tissue..

As you know, metastatic cancer spreads to nearby healthy areas of tissue. It can also spread to the bones. It is important to remember that the patient will not have bone cancer. For example, if a person has lung cancer, then even in the bones it will be lung cancer.

X-ray, MRI, CT, and bone scans will help detect bone metastases.

Some types of cancer are more likely to affect bone tissue. These are breast, kidney, prostate, lung, bladder, melanoma, thyroid cancer. Metastases most often affect the following bones: skull, ribs, shoulder bones, femur bones, spine, pelvic bones.

What are bones?
  • Bone tissue is alive, constantly growing and renewing;
  • Bone consists of two layers: thick and strong cortical bone and spongy trabecular bone;
  • The spongy substance contains bone marrow, in which blood cells are formed;
  • Bones are constantly renewed. If cancer metastases penetrate the tissue, the renewal process is disrupted. Bones become thin and brittle, which can lead to fractures;
  • If the doctor suspects that the cancer is already destroying the patient's bones, he may suggest a bone density test. Test results will show whether there is significant bone loss. There are two degrees of mass loss: osteopenia (the bone is slightly thinner than usual) or osteoporosis (dangerously thin bone, there is a high risk of fractures);
  • Scanning tests give an idea of ​​the condition of the bones. The numerical evaluation shows the condition of the tissue. From 1 to -1 means that the bones are normal, from -1 to -2.5 - osteopenia, below -2.5 - osteoporosis;
  • It is also possible to conduct tests for the probability of fractures in the future. The results are influenced by bad habits, lifestyle, and the number of fractures that have already occurred.
Treatment of bone metastases:
  • Chemotherapy. Stops the growth of cancer cells;
  • Hormonal therapy. It is used to treat breast and prostate cancer. In the first case, drugs block the production of estrogen, in the second - testosterone;
  • Preparations for the restoration of bones. Necessary for strengthening bones, but can cause side effects: cracks in bones, death of bone tissue, headache;
  • Radionuclide therapy. Reduces pain, but has negative consequences. Such as the destruction of the bone marrow, a decrease in the number of blood cells;
  • Radiation therapy can be directed at a specific area of ​​the body where metastatic cancer is developing;
  • Surgical intervention includes fixation and stabilization of damaged bones, pain reduction with special cement, bone repair with plates and screws, joint replacement.
Treatment of consequences:
  • To eliminate pain, the patient takes steroids, painkillers, radioactive radiation can also be directed to problem areas;
  • One of the most dangerous consequences can be compression of the spinal cord. This happens when the metastases in the spine have grown so much that they start to compress the bone marrow. Consult a doctor if you experience the following alarming symptoms: back pain, it is important to move the limbs, weakness in the legs, it is impossible to stand for a long time, problems with defecation and urination;
  • When calcium is leached from the bones into the blood, hypercalcemia occurs. Symptoms: nausea, vomiting, depression, loss of appetite, constant fatigue. To prevent this disease, drink more fluids, stop taking medications that wash calcium from the bones.

How to live with weak bones? To begin with, you should give up all bad habits, start eating right, and include fruits and vegetables in your diet. Eat more foods that contain calcium.


Exercise is an important component of successful treatment. Try to exercise 30 minutes a day. Light yoga, light walks in the fresh air will help.

In this article, we told you about bone metastases. In order to prevent broken bones, you need to buy safe shoes, make your bed lower so that it is easier to get out of it. Talk to your doctor about strength training.


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