TB Oliver, R Bhat, CF Kellett, DJ Adamson



Bone metastases are a common feature of many cancers and patients with a previous history of cancer may present with bony symptoms to many different specialties. It is, however, easy to mistakenly diagnose secondary bone cancer in patients who have abnormal imaging, when the cause of the symptoms and the abnormal imaging results is benign disease. In this review, common diagnostic mistakes are described with examples of imaging of both benign and malignant bony disease. The relative risk of developing bone metastases in different cancers is discussed, as well as the rationale of different therapies for proven bony metastases, such as radiotherapy, bisphosphonate therapy, orthopaedic intervention and vertebroplasty.

Keywords Cancer, bony metastases diagnosis, bony metastasis management, imaging interpretation

Declaration of Interests No conflict of interests declared.