In cancer, individual cells can dislodge from the original tumour and spread to the bones (metastases). There, they can continue to grow and impair normal bone function. Typical symptoms include sudden nerve and bone pain. This is often treated with radiation therapy.
- Tingling nerve pain (a spinal metastasis presses on the spinal cord)
- Can even cause paralysis
- Sudden bone pain (when the metastasis causes the bone to break)
- Particularly severe at night
Causes and treatment
When cancer cells dislodge from the original tumour and move through the body to another organ we speak of metastases. Some tumours tend to spread to the bones through the veins:
Further treatment by your doctor / in hospital
- CT scan (computed tomography)
- MRI (magnetic resonance imaging)
- Bone scintigraphy (special method to detect bone metastases)
- Radiation therapy
- Medication to reduce bone loss
- Operation (e.g. spinal fusion for stabilisation)
What can I do myself?
- Go for recommended preventive examinations (e.g. mammogram)
Get a personal Preventive Care Recommendation now.
When to see a doctor?
- Sudden nerve pain or bone pain, in particular when a tumour has been diagnosed