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Bone scan


Re: Bone scan

Hi Sara


Thanks for posting here.


The terms lesion and tumour are sometimes used interchangeably. However, the term’ lesion’ is often used to describe an area of tissue before its cause has been identified, for example breast cancer.


Definitions in medical dictionaries describe a lesion as; ‘a region in an organ or tissue which has suffered damage through injury or disease, such as a wound, ulcer, abscess, or tumour’. And a tumour as; ‘an abnormal mass of tissue that results from excessive cell division that is uncontrolled and progressive.


They may be either benign (not cancer) or malignant (cancer)’.


Investigations such as bone scans or CT scans are not routinely performed at diagnosis or as part of breast cancer follow up.  However, they may be requested if doctors feel that there is a high risk that the cancer may have already spread, or you have symptoms that need checking.


Do ask your team about whether any scans are required once your doctor has explained the results of your surgery to you. It can also be helpful to ask him/her to explain their reasoning for this, so you understand how they reached their decision.


We offer a range of free supportive services that you might be interested in both now and in the future. This includes face to face support at a number of locations throughout the country. For more details about all of these services, please see the information on the link, or call our free confidential Helpline.

You might also find it helpful to call our Helpline to talk your queries through further or if you have any other questions after your appointment. The number is 0808 800 6000.


Our opening hours are Monday to Friday 9am - 4pm and 9am -1pm on Saturday. Out of hours you can leave a message and we will call you back when we next open.


Best wishes




Breast Cancer Now Nurse


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Bone scan



I wonder if you could help me with a couple of questions that I've been thinking about.


I was diagnosed with bc on 18th Nov, they found 3 small tumours all under 1cm,  2 are grade 1 ductal and the other is grade 2 globular. They couldn't see anything in lymph nodes. Following my original tests, biopsies etc, they sent me for an MRI which showed another 2 small lesions in same breast and a lump in other breast which turned out to be benign...please could you explain the difference between a tumour and a lesion? I had a left breast mastectomy on 12th Dec with sentinel node biopsy, results on 6th Jan. Also I've been reading a lot about bc recurrence and secondary bc and there seems to be some evidence suggesting that for some women it had spread to the bones fist time around but not been detected....can I request a bone scan even if they don't suggest it?