metastasize

Pronunciation: (meh-TAS-tuh-size)

To spread from one part of the body to another. When cancer cells metastasize and form secondary tumors, the cells in the metastatic tumor are like those in the original (primary) tumor.

Source: NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms

Caption: Metastasis. In metastasis, cancer cells break away from where they first formed (primary cancer), travel through the blood or lymph system, and form new tumors (metastatic tumors) in other parts of the body. The metastatic tumor is the same type of cancer as the primary tumor.

Date last modified: 2014-11-19