A Radiologist explains the various imaging techniques used to detect neuroendocrine tumors.
Irving, TX – February 23, 2020 – Imaging tests used in neuroendocrine tumors help to diagnose and assess the condition of the tumors. Neuroendocrine tumors can be hard to image, and doctors may use different imaging techniques than the standard scans used for other cancers.
“Neuroendocrine tumors can present tiny lesions that are difficult to detect using standard imaging procedures," said a radiologist. "That is why high-resolution imaging is needed to ensure that even the tiniest lesion is identified."
• Somatostatin Receptor Scintigraphy – This is a radionuclide scan that uses radioactive substances that bind to the tumor’s somatostatin receptors. However, not all tumors will have somatostatin receptors. Patients using this procedure should discuss the timing with the doctors to avoid interfering with their treatment. Somatostatin Receptor Scintigraphy can also help doctors to predict a patient’s response to somatostatin analogs therapy and peptide receptor radionuclide therapy.
• Octreotide scan – During this imaging procedure, a patient is injected with a small amount of radioactive octreotide in the vein. The octreotide will travel through the bloodstream and attach to the tumor. This will reflect on a special camera that will show the location of the tumors in the body.
• PET with Ga-68 Dotatate – This is a novel SRS test that uses Ga-68 Dotatate – a radioactive tracer – to bind to the somatostatin receptors of the tumor. After injecting the patient with Ga-68 Dotatate, they will undergo a PET scan where images will show all the neuroendocrine tumors in the body with utmost clarity.
• MIBG scan – An MIBG scan helps to find specific neuroendocrine tumors like pheochromocytoma and paraganglioma. A radioactive substance known as MIBG is injected in small amounts into the patient’s vein. The scan will help detect neuroendocrine tumor cells that consume MIBG. The procedure can take up to 3 days.
“These types of scans can detect neuroendocrine tumors with detailed precision,” continued the radiologist. “However, before considering any of these imaging techniques, evaluate your condition first with your doctors to avoid any complications, especially when you are undergoing treatment.”
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