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We’re specialists in the latest techniques for diagnosing and treating all types of cancer, including advanced cancers that have spread to the bones. Our teams of highly trained cancer specialists work together to evaluate the newest, evidence-based approaches so we can offer these to every patient – without delay.
Secondary bone cancers, also known as bone cancer metastases, occur when cancer cells spread (metastasise) to the bones from a tumour that started in another part of the body.
The area where the tumour first develops is called primary cancer. Sometimes, cancer cells can break away from the primary tumour and move through the bloodstream or lymphatic system to another part of the body, where they create a new, secondary cancer.
Some particular types of cancer are more likely to spread to the bones than others, such as prostate, breast, lung, thyroid, and kidney cancer. Cancers can also metastasise to any bone in the body. Occasionally, only one bone is affected, but for most people with secondary bone cancer, it spreads to several different sites. The most common areas of secondary bone cancer are the:
We understand that this can be a difficult time for you, and we’ll make sure you can get the expert care you need without delay. Most people with secondary bone cancer are diagnosed after knowing they have primary cancer somewhere else.
In some cases, secondary bone cancer may be found before you’ve been diagnosed with primary cancer. If the primary cancer can’t be found, you may hear this called a “cancer of unknown primary”.
Doctors typically diagnose secondary bone cancer with a combination of tests. Some of these tests are available at GenesisCare and include:
Secondary bone cancer can cause a range of symptoms, and there are treatments we can offer to help alleviate these and improve your quality of life. Your consultant will monitor your health and wellbeing to provide you with care that’s personalised to your needs and choices.
Some secondary bone cancer symptoms depend on the location of your cancer, but the most common symptoms include:
Although it’s not possible to completely irradicate this type of cancer, the aim of secondary bone cancer treatment is usually to control and alleviate symptoms.
The treatment you’ll have will depend on your primary cancer. Your consultant will assess your symptoms, diagnosis and general health together with a team of oncologists (doctors specialising in cancer), pathologists, radiologists and nurses to decide the best course of treatment for you – while also taking your personal wishes into consideration.
At GenesisCare, we’ll support you throughout your treatment and we have range of the latest secondary bone cancer therapies available. You may be offered one or a combination of drug treatments, radiotherapy, surgery or Theranostics.
There may also be opportunities to access clinical trials for the latest treatments for secondary bone cancer.
Radiotherapy uses high-energy radiation beams which are targeted at the cancer cells. For secondary bone cancers, it can help control pain and prevent your bones from fracturing.
At GenesisCare, we use advanced radiotherapy techniques such as volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) and stereotactic ablative radiotherapy (SABR) to treat secondary bone cancer. These treatments maximise delivery of radiation to the cancer, while the surrounding healthy tissues receive a much lower dose, reducing the risk of side effects when compared to other conventional radiotherapy treatments.
There are different operations that can strengthen bones, reduce pressure on the spinal cord and remove cancer from the bones, depending on the location of the secondary cancer. This can be arranged conveniently at one of our partner hospitals. Your other treatments can then continue at GenesisCare.
Theranostics is an innovative and highly personalised approach that combines diagnostic imaging and radionuclide therapy to seek and destroy advanced (metastatic) cancers without damaging surrounding healthy tissue.
GenesisCare is a leading private provider of cancer care, offering the latest innovations and techniques that are proven to be safe and effective. If you choose us for bone cancer treatment you will be under the care of a team of experts, including consultant oncologists and surgeons. They will design a personalised care plan based around your diagnosis and preferences, with treatment starting within days if needed. Every patient is also supported through their journey with life-changing therapies, such as exercise medicine and psychological support.
Our dedicated cancer centres are convenient and easy-to-access. You can use your private medical insurance, and we’re recognised by all leading insurers.
Throughout the COVID-19 outbreak, our priority is to continue providing the very best cancer care with meticulous measures in place to ensure our patients receive the treatments they need safely and without delay. You can find out more about our COVID-19 safety measures here.
We are proud that so many patients rate our care as excellent as we help them through their cancer journey. Find out more about the unique experiences of people who have had their cancer diagnosis or treatment at GenesisCare in our patient stories section.
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