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Cancer Treatment Centers of America

TNM system for bone cancer

Making an educated treatment decision begins with the stage, or progression, of the disease. The stage of bone cancer is one of the most important factors in evaluating treatment options.

Our cancer doctors use a variety of diagnostic tests to evaluate bone cancer and develop an individualized treatment plan. If you have been recently diagnosed, we will review your pathology to confirm you have received the correct diagnosis and staging information, and develop a personalized treatment plan. If you have a recurrence, we will perform comprehensive testing and identify a treatment approach that is suited to your needs.

The staging guidelines developed by the American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) are often used to stage bone cancers, and allow doctors to communicate important information about the cancer with each other in a standardized way. Bone cancer stages are based on four categories:

  • T - Describes the size of the primary bone tumor.
  • N - Indicates whether the bone cancer cells have spread to regional lymph nodes.
  • M - Refers to whether the cancer has metastasized (spread to distant areas of the body).
  • G - Grade refers to how abnormal the tumor cells look under the microscope (high-grade tumors look more abnormal, grow more quickly and are more likely to spread).


Last Revised: 02/22/2017

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