U.S. doctors online nowAsk doctors free
A member asked:

How long do test results take after surgery to know if i have cancer? my aunt went in for a testing a couple days ago, we are very anxious to find out the results. her doctor said it should take a week or two, is that a normal wait time?

2 doctor answers2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Lauren Stegman
Radiation Oncology 28 years experience
Results : Results can sometimes take over a week, especially if special stains have to be done on the tissue in order to finalize the diagnosis. These can sometimes take a few days to complete. However, most of the time at least a preliminary answer can be given within a few days of a biopsy or surgey.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Michael Stern
Surgery 11 years experience
Weeks sounds right: Many cancer tests are done by special laboratories and the blood work it will need to get sent to them. It takes time for the sample to get sent to them and time to run the tests. It is not surprising that this would take a week or so. Any biopsies that were taken of any masses could also take that long as it takes time to prepare the specimen for review.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Last updated Oct 3, 2016


Content on HealthTap (including answers) should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, and interactions on HealthTap do not create a doctor-patient relationship. Never disregard or delay professional medical advice in person because of anything on HealthTap. Call your doctor or 911 if you think you may have a medical emergency.