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Joel Mercer, Andrew C. L. Lam, Roger Smith, Nazanin Fallah-Rad and John Kavanagh

A 69-year-old man developed pulmonary metastases following vertebroplasties for pathological fractures of vertebrae T12–L4. The fractures developed due to spinal metastases from castrate-resistant prostate cancer. A CT scan performed 1 month prior indicated no evidence of pulmonary malignancy. However, CT scans performed 2 months after the vertebroplasties demonstrated intravascular pulmonary metastases distributed similarly to embolized polymethylmethacrylate. Vertebroplasty is a well-established procedure for symptomatic management of vertebral compression fractures. However, studies have demonstrated an increase in circulating tumor cells following vertebroplasties, theoretically increasing the risk of distant metastases. In this case, the chronicity and radiological findings suggest that the pulmonary intravascular metastases may have resulted from the vertebroplasties.