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What is a sclerotic lesion?

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Quick Answer

According to the Department of Radiology at the University of Washington, sclerotic bone lesions are areas of bone that exhibit extra bone growth. One of the most common causes for diffuse sclerotic lesions is metastatic cancer.

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What is a sclerotic lesion?
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Full Answer

The Department of Radiology explains that bones can only respond to environmental problems by producing more bone tissue or removing existing bone tissue. In cases where the problem is acute, the bone only has enough time to remove bone tissue in response. Therefore, conditions that cause sclerotic lesions to form are generally slow-moving processes. Several other potential causes for sclerotic lesions include imbalances in vitamin D, excessive fluoride or infections, such as chronic osteomyelitis. Additionally, endocrine disorders, such as hyperparathyroidism and Paget’s disease, can cause sclerotic lesions.

The Department of Radiology notes that sclerotic lesions may occur in dense clusters as isolated areas or diffusely over a wide area of bone. Each presentation is typically associated with a given health problem. For example, focal or multifocal presentation indicates that if it is an endocrine disorder, Paget’s disease is the most likely culprit. By contrast, diffuse presentation of sclerotic lesions indicates that hyperparathyroidism is likely. According to an article in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, sclerotic bone lesions are very rare for patients suffering from myeloma.

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