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Osteolytic Lesions


Updated June 10, 2014

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Osteolytic Lesions

An X-ray of osteolytic lesions in myeloma.

© 2010 Hellerhoff

Also called osteoclastic lesions or lytic lesions for short, osteolytic lesions are characteristic areas of damage caused by myeloma. When myeloma invades bone tissue, it causes weak areas to form. In addition, the myeloma cells release chemicals that also lead to bone breakdown. The result is lesions with a specific “punched-out” appearance that may occur in any bone in the body, but are most often noted in the spine, skull, pelvis and ribs.


Munker,R. and Glass, J.(2007). Multiple Myeloma and Related Paraproteinemias. In Munker,R., Hillier,E., Glass,J. et al (eds.)Modern Hematology: Biology and Clinical Management- 2nd edition. (pp. 271-295). Totowa, New Jersey: Humana Press Inc.

Also Known As: Lytic lesions, osteoclastic lesions
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