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Cancer Manag Res. 2018 Feb 9;10:287-295. doi: 10.2147/CMAR.S155524. eCollection 2018.

Bone metastasis pattern in initial metastatic breast cancer: a population-based study.

Xiong Z#1,2,3, Deng G#1,2,3, Huang X#1,2,3, Li X1,2,3, Xie X1,2,3, Wang J1,2,3, Shuang Z1,2,3, Wang X1,2,3.

Author information

Department of Breast Surgery, Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou, China.
State Key Laboratory of Oncology in Southern China, Guangzhou, China.
Collaborative Innovation Center for Cancer Medicine, Guangzhou, China.
Contributed equally



Bone is one of the most common sites of breast cancer metastasis, and population-based studies of patients with bone metastasis in initial metastatic breast cancer (MBC) are lacking.

Materials and methods:

From 2010 to 2013, 245,707 breast cancer patients and 8901 patients diagnosed with initial bone metastasis were identified by Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results database of the National Cancer Institute. Multivariate logistic and Cox regression were used to identify predictive factors for the presence of bone metastasis and prognosis factors. Kaplan-Meier method and log-rank test were used for survival analysis.


Eight thousand nine hundred one patients with initial MBC had bone involvement, accounting for 3.6% of the entire cohort and 62.5% of the patients with initial MBC. Also, 70.5% of patients with bone metastasis were hormone receptor (HR) positive (HR+/human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 [HER2]-: 57.6%; HR+/HER2+: 12.9%). Patients with initial bone metastasis had a better 5-year survival rate compared to those with initial brain, liver, or lung metastasis. HR+/HER2- and HR+/HER2+ breast cancer had a propensity of bone metastasis in the entire cohort and were correlated with better prognosis in patients with initial bone metastasis. Local surgery had significantly improved overall survival in initial MBC patients with bone metastasis.


Our study has provided population-based estimates of epidemiologic characteristics and prognosis in patients with bone metastasis at the time of breast cancer diagnosis. These findings would lend support to optimal surveillance and treatment of bone metastasis in breast cancer.


bone; initial metastatic breast cancer; molecular subtype; survival

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