Diagnosis and Detection of Pancreatic Cancer : The Cancer Journal

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Diagnosis and Detection of Pancreatic Cancer

Chu, Linda C. MD*; Goggins, Michael G. MBBCh, MD; Fishman, Elliot K. MD*

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The Cancer Journal 23(6):p 333-342, 11/12 2017. | DOI: 10.1097/PPO.0000000000000290


Computed tomography is the first-line imaging modality for suspected pancreatic cancer. Magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography is a second-line modality for suspected pancreatic cancer and is usually reserved for equivocal cases. Both computed tomography and MR are highly sensitive in the detection of pancreatic cancer, with up to 96% and 93.5% sensitivity, respectively. Computed tomography is superior to MR in the assessment of tumor resectability, with accuracy rates of up to 86.8% and 78.9%, respectively. Close attention to secondary signs of pancreatic cancer, such as pancreatic duct dilatation, abrupt pancreatic duct caliber change, and parenchymal atrophy, are critical in the diagnosis of pancreatic cancer. Emerging techniques such as radiomics and molecular imaging have the potential of identifying malignant precursors and lead to earlier disease diagnosis. The results of these promising techniques need to be validated in larger clinical studies.

Copyright © 2017 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.

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