Osteosarcoma and Malignant Fibrous Histiocytoma of Bone Treatment (PDQ®): Treatment - Patient Information [NCI] - Stages of Osteosarcoma and Malignant Fibrous Histiocytoma of Bone
There are three ways that cancer spreads in the body.
The three ways that cancer spreads in the body are:
- Through tissue. Cancer invades the surrounding normal tissue.
- Through the lymph system. Cancer invades the lymph system and travels through the lymph vessels to other places in the body.
- Through the blood. Cancer invades the veins and capillaries and travels through the blood to other places in the body.
When cancer cells break away from the primary (original) tumor and travel through the lymph or blood to other places in the body, another (secondary) tumor may form. This process is called metastasis. The secondary (metastatic) tumor is the same type of cancer as the primary tumor. For example, if bone cancer spreads to the lung, the cancer cells in the lung are actually bone cancer cells. The disease is metastatic bone cancer, not lung cancer.
Osteosarcoma and MFH are described as either localized or metastatic.
- Localized osteosarcoma or MFH has not spread out of the bone where the cancer started. There may be one or more areas of cancer in the bone that can be removed during surgery.
- Metastatic osteosarcoma or MFH has spread from the bone in which the cancer began to other parts of the body. The cancer most often spreads to the lungs. It may also spread to other bones.