A member asked:

Are there bone tumors that do not show up on x-ray or ct but do show up on bone scan? can't have mri (icd)

11 doctors weighed in across 5 answers
Dr. Allen Lu answered

Specializes in Orthopedic Surgery

Bone tumors are mostly evaluated with ct and x-ray. The extent of involvement can be evaluated with an MRI (usually to assess the soft tissue extension). A bone scan is used only to evaluate distant lesions that may have travelled away from the original tumor. Some tumors do not light up on bone scan.

Answered Jun 10, 2014



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Dr. Thomas Heston answered

Specializes in Family Medicine

Often the bone scan will show the tumor prior to it being seen on x-ray or ct, especially if you get an f18 Fluoride pet/ct bone scan.

Answered Jun 25, 2014


Dr. Brian Sabb answered

Specializes in Sports Medicine

X-ray is the right place to start the evaluation for bone lesions including tumors. However, since you cannot get an mri, a nuclear medicine study should be considered. Bone scan is an option. Others include spect/ct and pet/ct. These exams combine the benefits of nuclear medicine (like bone scan) and ct. Please note they also combine the risks of the 2 exams, namely increased radiation exposure.

Answered Apr 26, 2019


Dr. Gerald Mandell answered

Specializes in Nuclear Medicine

Most primary bone tumors are evident on plain radiographs and ct exam. Mr is usually used to be exact about extent of involvement in soft tissues or marrow. Mr helps surgeon in planning extent of tumor for surgery. Bone scan and pet?Ct are used usually not to make diagnosis of primary bone tumor but extent of spread to other areas of body. Pet/ct is most sensitive and accurate detecting metastases.

Answered Mar 13, 2019


Dr. Paul Baez answered

Specializes in Radiology

Nuclear medicine bone scan is very sensitive for certain types of bone tumors and can show a lesion that is not yet apparent on x-ray or ct. Depends on the type of tumor.

Answered Jan 5, 2019



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