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Doctor insights on: Can A Ct Scan Show Cancer

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Does CT scan show cancer?

Does CT scan show cancer?

Not always: Not all cancer is visible with a ct scan. There are many variables- size of tumor, location, presence or abscence of IV or oral contrast. ...Read more

Dr. Barry Rosen
4,344 Doctors shared insights

Cancer (Definition)

Cancer is a group of diseases that is characterized by uncontrolled cell growth leading to invasion of surrounding tissues that spread to other parts of the body. Cancer can begin anywhere in the body and is usually related to one or more genetic mutations that allow normal cells to become malignant by interfering with internal cellular control mechanisms, such as programmed cell death or by preventing ...Read more


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Do all cancers show on CT scan?

Do all cancers show on CT scan?

Sadly, no: Not all cancer is visible with a ct scan. There are many variables- size of tumor, location, presence or abscence of IV or oral contrast. ...Read more

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What cancer would show up on CT scan of neck?

What cancer would show up on CT scan of neck?

Many kinds could.: The neck is an anatomically complicated region with many internal structures. A ct scan of the neck could show both primary and secondary cancers (tumors that started in the neck and tumors that have spread to the neck from other parts of the body). One primary neck cancer that might be seen on a neck scan is thyroid cancer. Lymphoma is another. Tongue / tonsil / larynx cancers also... ...Read more

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I'm 23, male, had CT scan show a lesion of a few millimeters on bladder. No other symptoms. What are the odds this is cancer? What else could this be?

I'm 23, male, had CT scan show a lesion of a few millimeters on bladder. No other symptoms. What are the odds this is cancer? What else could this be?

Need cystoscopy. ..: I assumed the reason for having CT was blood in urine or bacterial urinary tract infection. So, thus far, you need a direct look at the whole interior of the bladder to make sure this tiny lesion of few mm is a tumor or a false image (this is possible). For a 23-y-o man, a malignant lesion is not highm but still possible; I have seen a low-grade malignant tumor in a man as young as 18 yrs old. ...Read more

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Will a CT scan (no contrast) detect cervical cancer if it's stage 2B or above? I realize a CT can't diagnose cervical cancer, I'm just wondering how likely it is that something would show up on a ct.

Will a CT scan (no contrast) detect cervical cancer if it's stage 2B or above? I realize a CT can't diagnose cervical cancer, I'm just wondering how likely it is that something would show up on a ct.

Less likely: CT without IV contrast is not very accurate in visualizing cervical cancer. MRI is more likely to see the lesion. Your doctors are looking to see if there had been spread beyond the cervix. But you still need the IV contrast ...Read more

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When would CT scan cancer effects show up? If I received too much radiation as a result of CT scans, when would the cancer potentially show up? Could I get canncer in 10-20 years because of CT scan radiation?

When would CT scan cancer effects show up? If I received too much radiation as a result of CT scans, when would the cancer potentially show up? Could I get canncer in 10-20 years because of CT scan radiation?

Delayed, high dose: In general, ct scans do not by themselves cause cancer. You would have to have had dozens upon dozens to risk the development of cancer. Having said that, when radiation induced cancers development, they are usually in the field of radiation, and usually are sarcomas (soft tissue malignancies). Based on your age, you would have to have had hundreds of cts in a short time 15-20 years ago. ...Read more

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Does a CT scan that shows dialation in one of the kidneys mean cancer?

Does a CT scan that shows dialation in one of the kidneys mean cancer?

Not necessarily: Dilation is a reflection of obstruction which may be due to a cancer or a benign tumor/polyp, a small stone, or a scarring of ureter. ...Read more

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How likely is it that a CT scan would show pancreatic cancer?

How likely is it that a CT scan would show pancreatic cancer?

CT scan is a good te: CT scan can pick up any lump or tumor of more than 2 cm when located in the abdomen. In that regard it will pick up pancreatic Cancer if it is there. Accuracy is 80% or better ...Read more

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What is the prognosis when I have stage 3c primary peritoneal cancer, have went through the 6 rounds of chemo and my CT scan shows residual disease?

What is the prognosis when I have stage 3c primary peritoneal cancer, have went through the 6 rounds of chemo and my CT scan shows residual disease?

Prognosis: You should have had a primary debulking surgery before chemotherapy by a gyn oncologist. At this point, with what is known as platinum resistant disease you should be offered a research protocol for care. This is a very unfortunate situation. ...Read more

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What does a pet scan of my esophageal cancer show that a CT scan doesn't?

What does a pet scan of my esophageal cancer show that a CT scan doesn't?

Metastasis: A pet scan is helpful in identifying metastasis of the cancer, or spread to other organs such as the liver or bone, as well as spread to adjacent or distant lymph nodes. Abnormal images on the pet scan will glow with metabolic activity. ...Read more

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Mother had colonoscopy- they found a small lesion that they believe is cancer. Doing a CT scan next before the remove it? What does the CT show?

Mother had colonoscopy- they found a small lesion that they believe is cancer. Doing a CT scan next before the remove it? What does the CT show?

CT scan: The ct scan may show the extent of the tumor. For example the ct scan could reveal if the tumor has invaded through the gut wall and is present in the surrounding fat. It could also show if there are large lymph nodes and weather or not there is spread to the liver. ...Read more

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What would a PET scan show that a CT scan may not for a person with pancreatic cancer?

What would a PET scan show that a CT scan may not for a person with pancreatic cancer?

PET in cancer: PET scans are used to detect areas of abnormally increased metabolism, while CT scans only detect areas of differing density or lucency to radiation. So an abnormality like an area of scarred old tumor might look abnormal on CT scan but not have increased metabolism indicating active cancer on PET scan. False positives still occur with both, but they tend to commplement each other. ...Read more

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If pancreatic cancer in body or tail is causing symptoms, would it show up on a iv contrast ct scan?

If pancreatic cancer in body or tail is causing symptoms, would it show up on a iv contrast ct scan?

Yes it would: CT scan of the abdomen is a reliable to test to check for Cancer of the Pancreas. So you do not have to think too much about this as a source of your symptoms. Go see a Gastroenterologist if symptoms persist for more than a week or two. ...Read more

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Is it feasible to have had small cell lung cancer causing malabsorption for 1 year but not show on CT scan.

No: Although a negative CT does not guarantee that you are totally free of cancer cells, your malabsorption has nothing to do with the cancer. If you have received radiation for the condition, then that Rx might potentially though unlikely lead to GI changes. ...Read more

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Ct scan shows diverticulitis Gi advised sigmoidoscopy to check narrowing of colon could it be cancer as been told only scoping can confirm difference?

Unfortunately those: Two conditions can look similar on the CT scan. Another option is to treat for diverticulitis, then repeat the CT scan to see if the abnormality has resolved. If you don't have symptoms of diverticulitis, you should have the sigmoidoscopy. ...Read more

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Will a ct scan without contrast show pancreatitis or pancreatic cancer? Or damage to the liver?

Will a ct scan without contrast show pancreatitis or pancreatic cancer? Or damage to the liver?

Yes: In some cases a noncontrast ct scan can show pancreatic cancer, changes that could suggest pancreatic inflammation and liver diseases. However a negative scan does not rule out these diseases. ...Read more

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Would advanced colon cancer show up on a CT scan of my abdomen? Reg CT scan not virtual colonoscopy.

Would advanced colon cancer show up on a CT scan of my abdomen? Reg CT scan not virtual colonoscopy.

Imaging/biopsy: The imaging modality of ct scan could show findings that would be concerning for cancer, mass around your colon, enlarged lymph nodes in the same area. However, the diagnosis is made at biopsy, a piece of the mass under the microscope of a pathologist. Often the ct scan leads to the biopsy. Good luck, it is important to get the evaluation completed. ...Read more

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CT scan w/o contrast for lump under tongue for suspected stone. Results show no stone. Worried it may be cancer. Would scan w/o contrast show tumor?

CT scan w/o contrast for lump under tongue for suspected stone. Results show no stone. Worried it may be cancer. Would scan w/o contrast show tumor?

Unlikely to be cance: You can ask your physician to have you see a ENT physician. You will need to see if you need a biopsy to the tissue. This is unlikely to be cancer. You will need other imaging to clarify this. ...Read more

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Can small cell lung cancer cause malabsorption through zolinger Ellison syndrome. Would this be a presenting sign of sclc before it shows on ct scan?

Can small cell lung cancer cause malabsorption through zolinger Ellison syndrome. Would this be a presenting sign of sclc before it shows on ct scan?

Uncommon: Most Zollinger-Ellison / gastrinoma are from islet cell tumors of the foregut. Oat cell carcinoma can produce other paraneoplastic syndromes, famously the anti-nerve cell ones, before being visible on chest ray, but it announces itself fast enough. And what are you going to without a localized tumor? Take out both lungs? Look for some other cause for any suggestive symptoms. Good question Gill. ...Read more

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Is it possible that CT scan shows no pleural masses while I have lung cancer and massive effusion?

Unusual but yes.: CT scans have limited resolution. They do NOT see everything. Usually large pleural effusions come from significant disease, but not always cancer. The only way to tell is to have the pleural effusion drained & sent for cytology & other testing (culture). The lab techs can spin down the fluid, isolate cells or bacteria that may be causing it. Talk to a pulmonologist or your primary doc. Good luck! ...Read more

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How often do you need to use PET scan or bronchoscope to locate lung cancer because it does not show on CT scan but symptoms tell you to keep looking?

How often do you need to use PET scan or bronchoscope to locate lung cancer because it does not show on CT scan but symptoms tell you to keep looking?

Clinical judgement: This pathologist is underwhelmed with the health or public benefits of intensive screening for tiny lung cancers. I'd hope that if the person is symptomatic, some other investigations are undertaken and the actual cause gets found. ...Read more

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I had kidney cancer and now have pain in my right hip area and going down the right side of my bottom CT scan show a lesion in the right medial ilium?

I had kidney cancer and now have pain in my right hip area and going down the right side of my bottom CT scan show a lesion in the right medial ilium?

Further testing: More detailed imaging may be helpful and possibly a biopsy of the area to determine the exact cause of pain. In cases of isolated bony metastasis, focused radiation therapy can provide significant relief from pain. Other therapies may be available as well depending on your particular situation, but it is certainly possible that'll none of this is cancer related. Good luck and keep in touch! ...Read more

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I was diagnosed with testicular cancer on 7/22/12, removed 7/25/12. Blood work good, CT scan shows 4mm, 6mm, 12mm spot on liver, your thoughts, MRI 10/9?

I was diagnosed with testicular cancer on 7/22/12, removed 7/25/12. Blood work good, CT scan shows 4mm, 6mm, 12mm spot on liver, your thoughts, MRI 10/9?

Need treatments: Most likely you will have needle biopsy of liver lesion, fortunately the the chemotherapy is very effective be confident you will have excellent chance of remission, good example cyclist l armstrong speak to your oncologist. ...Read more

Dr. Milroy Samuel
1 Doctor shared a insight

Computed Tomography (Definition)

Ct uses xrays taken an 360 degrees combined with a computer to see"inside" the body. The table moves as the xray tube and detectors spin around the patient 10 times a second or more! The image shows excellent soft tissue detail, enhanced with injection of intravenous contrast or oral contrast. This way the body is shown in slices, in any plane, usually axially, but ...Read more


Dr. Michael Gabor
1,876 Doctors shared insights

Ct Scan (Definition)

Computed tomography (ct scan) or computed axial tomography (cat scan), is a medical imaging procedure that utilizes computer-processed x-rays to produce tomographic images or 'slices' of specific ...Read more