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A 27-year-old member asked:

Does an x-ray detect a tumor/cancer in the neck?

2 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Mitchell Kamrava
Radiation Oncology 17 years experience
Not exactly: X-rays help you detect abnormalities such as a mass that is not normal but they do not tell you what that mass is. In order to figure this out you need to have a biopsy. The tissue obtained at the time of a biopsy is then reviewed by a pathologist who can help identify whether the mass is consistent with cancer. Other imaging tests like ct scans or MRI can be more helpful in delineating anatomy.
Dr. Della Howell
Pediatric Hematology and Oncology 24 years experience
Maybe: If it's just a plain / regular x-ray study, many cancers in the neck will not be picked up using this method. However, a cat scan (ct), MRI or ultrasound study may be more likely to detect a cancer in the neck.
Last updated Aug 6, 2019


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