Secondary bone cancer, X-ray

Secondary bone cancer, X-ray

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Credit: DR P. MARAZZI/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Secondary bone cancer. X-ray of the spine of a 68- year-old man with metastatic (secondary) cancer (areas of increased bone density or sclerotic lesions, solid white, for example at lower right). The cancer spread from a tumour on the patient's prostate gland, part of the male reproductive system located below the bladder. Bone cancer may cause bone pain, particularly at night. A swelling or mass may be felt at the tumour site, and the bones often have a tendency to fracture. Treatment includes radiotherapy, chemotherapy and hormone therapy. The patient is also suffering from osteoarthritis, shown by a reduction in the spaces between the vertebrae (down centre).

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