We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is Metastatic Bone Cancer?

By Erin J. Hill
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Metastatic bone cancer is a malignancy which originates anywhere in the body and eventually spreads to the bones. The cells which form the cancer travel through the bloodstream and may begin growing in the bone. Once this occurs, the disease is often much harder to treat than cancers which remain in one area. Metastatic bone cancer most often originates in the lungs and breast, although any cancer can spread to the bones.

Patients with metastatic bone cancer may require a combination of treatment options to cure the disease or prolong life. The death rate for any metastatic cancer is much higher than for cancers which have not spread. Radiation and chemotherapy are the most common treatment methods, and they are often used in combination with one another once the disease has spread beyond its starting point.

The rate at which metastatic bone cancer spreads varies based on the situation. Some cancers are more aggressive than others and spread very quickly, while others metastasize slowly over the course of several months, or even years, depending on where the cancer originated in the body. Treatment is often begun right away to prevent further metastasis from taking place and to kill the cancer when possible. Once the disease has spread, however, survival rates drop dramatically.

Sometimes cancer can originate in the bones and spread elsewhere, although this is very uncommon. Most bone cancers are metastatic and come from other areas of the body; this is called secondary cancer. The cells which cause the disease in the bones in these cases is not caused by bone cells, but from cells coming from whichever organ or tissue was cancerous in the first place.

Since bone cancer often originates from the lungs or breasts, patients are encouraged to get yearly physicals to ensure health. Any symptoms of cancer should be checked immediately. When cancer is caught early, it is usually treatable and can often be cured before it has time to spread. Cancers which have only spread to the surrounding areas and not throughout the body are also commonly treatable.

The primary symptom of bone cancer of any type is pain and stiffness in the joints or anywhere in the body. This can be confused with arthritis, but since cancer in the bones is rare, other symptoms are generally present resulting from the primary cancer. Additional symptoms can include fatigue, swelling, and weakness. These are more common once the cancer has spread.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.