Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Head And Neck Cancer: Quick Way To Determine If Cancer Has Spread

Date:
July 24, 2008
Source:
Saint Louis University
Summary:
For patients with head and neck cancer, accurately determining how advanced the cancer is and detecting secondary cancers usually means undergoing numerous tests - until now. New research has found that the PET-CT scanner can be used as a stand-alone tool to detect secondary cancers, which occur in 5 to 10 percent of head and neck cancer patients.

For patients with head and neck cancer, accurately determining how advanced the cancer is and detecting secondary cancers usually means undergoing numerous tests - until now. New Saint Louis University research has found that the PET-CT scanner can be used as a stand-alone tool to detect secondary cancers, which occur in 5 to 10 percent of head and neck cancer patients.

The study findings, which were presented on July 22, at the 7th International Conference on Head and Neck Cancer in San Francisco, Calif., will streamline care for head and neck cancer patients allowing them to begin treatment earlier, says Michael Odell, M.D., assistant professor of otolaryngology at Saint Louis University School of Medicine.

"There has been a lot of confusion about the best ways to evaluate head and neck cancer patients to see if their cancer has spread," said Odell, the study's primary author.

"Traditionally, doctors used many different tests, such as chest X-rays, CT scans, ultrasounds, bone scans and blood work. Patients went through too many unnecessary procedures because there was no real consensus on the best way to evaluate them."

According to Odell, when choosing the appropriate treatment plan for head and neck cancer patients, it is critical to accurately stage the primary cancer and detect secondary cancers. Odell's research shows PET-CT scanning can replace all the other traditional tests.

Using the PET-CT scanner is not just a time saver, though; it also can be a life-saver.

"We all know that the time from when your doctor sees you to the time when you initiate treatment is important to outcomes," Odell explained. "So minimizing the number of tests is definitely important from an outcome standpoint."

To determine if PET-CT scans were as effective as the tradition tests, Odell and his colleagues evaluated the scans of 77 patients and found four to contain secondary cancers and one to have an additional primary cancer. The study's rate of detection - 7 percent - was inline with the results of previous studies, which range from 5 to 10 percent.

The PET-CT, which is an acronym for position emission tomography/computed tomography, combines two the benefits of both tests to offer unsurpassed diagnostic capabilities in pinpointing cancer. The PET scan is a highly sensitive scan that detects the growth of cancer cells, while the CT scan provides a detailed picture of the internal anatomy and the location of the growth.

While the current study focused exclusively on head and neck cancer patients, Odell says that it is likely that it will be applicable to other cancers.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Saint Louis University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Saint Louis University. "Head And Neck Cancer: Quick Way To Determine If Cancer Has Spread." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 July 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/07/080722091634.htm>.
Saint Louis University. (2008, July 24). Head And Neck Cancer: Quick Way To Determine If Cancer Has Spread. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/07/080722091634.htm
Saint Louis University. "Head And Neck Cancer: Quick Way To Determine If Cancer Has Spread." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/07/080722091634.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

AFP (July 24, 2014) A so-called drugs rehab 'clinic' is closed down in Pakistan after police find scores of ‘patients’ chained up alleging serial abuse. Duration 03:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Too Few Teens Receiving HPV Vaccination, CDC Says

Too Few Teens Receiving HPV Vaccination, CDC Says

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is blaming doctors for the low number of children being vaccinated for HPV. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Newsy (July 24, 2014) Sheik Umar Khan has treated many of the people infected in the Ebola outbreak, and now he's become one of them. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile: iPhone Android Web
          Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins