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Click2Cancer.com  > Common Cancers  >  Bone Cancer
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Bone tumor is an inexact term, which can be used for both benign and malignant abnormal growths found in bone, but is most commonly used for primary tumors of bone, such as osteosarcoma (or osteoma). It is less exactly applied to secondary, or metastatic tumors found in bone.

Bone tumors may be classified as "primary tumors" which originate in the bone, and "secondary tumors" which originate elsewhere.

Primary tumors of bone can be divided into benign tumors and cancers. Common benign bone tumors may be neoplastic, developmental, traumatic, infectious, or inflammatory in etiology. Examples of benign bone tumors include osteoma, osteochondroma, aneurysmal bone cyst, and fibrous dysplasia.

Malignant primary bone tumors include osteosarcoma, chondrosarcoma, Ewing's sarcoma, and other sarcoma types. Multiple myeloma is a hematologic cancer which also frequently presents as one or more bone tumors.

The tailbone is a common location for a teratoma, known a sacrococcygeal teratoma, and related germ cell tumors.

Secondary bone tumors include metastatic tumors which have spread from other organs, such as the breast, lung, and prostate. Metastatic tumors more frequently involve the axial skeleton than the appendicular skeleton. Tumors which originate in the soft tissues may also secondarily involve bones through direct invasion.

The most common symptom of bone tumors is pain, but many patients will not experience any symptoms, except for a painless mass. Some bone tumors may weaken the structure of the bone, causing pathologic fractures.