Tumors involving the spine are very rare, but can often be seen with radiological imaging, such an MRI, CT scan or x-ray (depending on the size and location). Whether tumors are be cancerous or noncancerous, they cause pain and weakness when pressing on the spinal nerves. Treating spinal tumors can involve radiation therapy, chemotherapy or surgery.
Metastatic disease is when a primary cancer elsewhere in the body travels to another area, in this case the spine. It’s not common for a patient presenting with back or neck pain to have a tumor, but it’s one of the things that physicians look for during a thorough evaluation.
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