How to diagnose bone cancer
For some types of cancer, there are many tests for finding out the cancer early before any symptoms are caused. There are many things that are considered by the doctor for looking at bone cancer. These things include blood tests, imaging tests, physical exams and tests. There is a removal of tumor and then it is examined under the microscope. The information from the biopsy is then combined with various results of imaging tests and x-rays for deciding whether there is a presence of cancer or not.
Given below are various types of imaging tests:
Most of the time, bone cancer is shown up on the X-rays of the bone. It can be told by the radiologist whether a tumor is seen in the X-ray or not. However, the biopsy is the only for making this sure. A chest x-ray is also done for seeing whether the spread of cancer is spread to the lungs or not.
# CT Scans
For a CT scan, the x-rays of the body will be taken from various angles. Before the x-rays are taken, a contrast dye can be given in the vein. The dye helps a lot in outline details. CT scans are also used for guiding a biopsy needle into the tumor. CT scans take a longer time as compared to the x-rays. A person has to lie still on the table as his body will be scanned within the scanner. The test doesn't involve any pain. However, it is hard to hold the body for a very long time. This is usually a problem with modern scanners. CT scans help in telling if the bone cancer has spread to the other lungs or not. There are also scans which help in showing the distant organs and lymph nodes with cancer.
Strong magnets and radio waves are used by MRI scans for making detailed pictures of the various parts of the body. Sometimes, the use of a contrast dye can be done. MRI scans are the best to outline the bone tumor. They are also very useful for looking at the spinal cord and brain. A longer duration is taken by the MRI scans than the CT scans. A person has to be placed inside the tube and this may make some people upset. The machine makes clicking and thumping noise. However, headphones may be given for blocking this sound.
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