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Doctor insights on: How Does Cancer Metastasize

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How does cancer metastasize?

How does cancer metastasize?

Enters circulation: The biology behind it is complicated and has been studied for decades by cancer researchers. However in a nutshell, the tumor gains access to blood vessels and lymphatics where it can then travel to distant sites such as lymph nodes, liver, lung, brain, and bones most commonly. ...Read more

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Dr. Barry Rosen
4,214 doctors shared insights

Cancer (Definition)

Cancer is a group of diseases that is characterized by uncontrolled cell growth leading to invasion of surrounding tissues that spread to other parts of the body. Cancer can begin anywhere in the body and is usually related to one or more genetic mutations that allow normal cells to become malignant by interfering with internal cellular control mechanisms, such as programmed cell death or by preventing ...Read more


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How quickly does breast cancer normally metastasize?

Varies: Each cancer is unique. Some cancer cells have the ability to metastasize very early in their development while other can be slower to metastasize. ...Read more

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Do most cancers metastasize?

Do most cancers metastasize?

Yes: Ability to metastasize is a key feature of malignancy. Basal cells carcinomas of skin rarely, if ever, metastasize, brain cancer do not metastasize outside the brain. ...Read more

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What makes cancer metastasize?

What makes cancer metastasize?

Still unknown really: Basically cancer is mutated cells that stop following the body's rules. They grow uncontrollably despite signals from their neighbors to stop. They break through natural barriers that most cells respect. Eventually they may reach lymphatic or blood vessels. A few cells then break free and colonize other tissue, like lymph nodes or other organs-metastasize. Each cancer has its own patterns. ...Read more

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What causes cancer to metastasize?

What causes cancer to metastasize?

Cell surface changes: There is a whole science behind this and people make entire careers studying this, but the very short answer is proteins that are on cancer cell surface that make them stick together are broken down. ...Read more

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What cancer is most likely to metastasize?

What cancer is most likely to metastasize?

Leukemia: White cells by their nature invade tissues, so by definition, a leukemia (cancer of the white blood cells) has always metastasized. There are a few thousand known types of cancer; oat cell of the lung is essentially always metastatic at the time of presentation, while a basal cell carcninoma can eat from the face into the brain with almost no chance of metastasizing. ...Read more

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Where are cancers most likely to metastasize?

Where are cancers most likely to metastasize?

Varies: Carcinomas and melanomas tend to go first to the regional lymph nodes, sarcomas to the lungs; there are exceptions. Lung cancer tends next to go to brain and adrenals. Prostate favors the lower vertebral column, colon and pancreas tend to go to the liver, breast turns up in liver, lung, brain, bone. But they are unpredictable; no two are the same. ...Read more

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What sort of skin cancer metastasizes most often?

What sort of skin cancer metastasizes most often?

Melanoma: Melanoma is the most aggressive type of skin cancer, arising from the pigment cells of the skin. When caught early, the chance for cure is high; however, once it has spread, it is very difficult to cure. ...Read more

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Could cancer metastasize to any part of the body?

Could cancer metastasize to any part of the body?

Yes: Cancer can spread to all parts of the body. Different types of cancers spread in very predictable ways. Such as lung cancer often spreads to the adrenal glands and bone while colon cancer frequently spreads to involve the liver. Many cancers can spread to the brain, however, brain cancer rarely spreads past the blood brain barrier outside of the brain. ...Read more

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When endometrial cancer metastasizes, where does it go?

Lymph nodes: Endometrial cancer usually spreads through the lymph node channels within the pelvis. Aggressive cases of endometrial cancer can spread to other organs like the liver. ...Read more

Metastasis (Definition)

A cancer begins in an organ (say the breast). If it gets into the blood stream or the lymphatic stream the cells can travel to other parts of the body where, in the right environment, they may settle and grow. This development of tumor growth far away from the original site ...Read more


Metastasize (Definition)

Cancer has spread beyond the ...Read more