Dr. Beauchamp describes if breast cancer will commonly develop into bone cancer.
It’s a very common situation for me to see someone who has metastatic bone disease and in women, the most common cause is breast cancer. It can occur anywhere in the skeleton. Typically, it’s someone who presents with pain and in the course of investigating that, we can tell on a plain x-ray that there are some destructive processes occurring and typically, patients have a history of breast cancer in the past.
Sometimes that’s the way patients present with breast cancer. They can have a breast mass that is, that they are not aware of and that they can have early spread of their breast cancer.
Sometimes patients present with a fracture and we have to deal with the fact that patients have not only a broken bone, but they have it secondary to this process that’s occurring.
Breast cancer is a malignant tumor and by definition, malignant means that it can spread to other parts of the body, and that can include anything, but it has a particular predilection, or tendency, to spread to bones. So, if it were to spread, the most likely location would be to bones. It can be anywhere in the skeleton, and typically that is manifested by pain.
About Dr. Beauchamp, M.D.:
Dr. Christopher P. Beauchamp, M.D., is an orthopedic surgery and Associate Professor of Orthopedics at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona. He focuses specifically on musculoskeletal oncology, adult reconstructive orthopedics, bone and soft tissue sarcomas, and infected, failed joint arthroplasty.