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Bone Cancer


Pain is the most common symptom of bone cancer. However, symptoms may vary, depending on the location and size of the cancer.
Other common symptoms include:
  • Swelling, tenderness, or stiffness of the affected area
  • Fracture
  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Weight loss
  • Anemia.
These possible symptoms, however, are not sure signs of bone cancer. Other less-serious health problems can also cause these symptoms. People who have possible bone cancer symptoms should see a doctor as soon as possible, because only a doctor can diagnose and treat the problem.
(Click Bone Cancer Symptoms for more information about possible symptoms related to this type of cancer.)

Diagnosing Bone Cancer

If a person has potential bone cancer symptoms, the doctor will need to perform a physical exam, ask about the patient's personal and family medical history, and recommend additional tests and procedures that examine the bones. Exams and tests that are used to make a diagnosis may include:
  • Blood tests
  • X-rays
  • Computed tomography (CT) scan
  • Bone scan
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan
  • Angiogram
  • Biopsy.
(Click Bone Cancer Diagnosis for more information about how the condition is diagnosed.)


Once a bone cancer diagnosis has been made, your doctor will need to determine where the cancer is located and how far the disease has spread in order to plan the best treatment. This is called staging. Most people are grouped depending on:
  • Whether the bone cancer is found in only one part of the body (localized)
  • Whether the bone cancer has spread from one part of the body to another (metastatic)
  • Whether the bone cancer has returned (recurrent).
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Bone Cancer Information

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