Compare the role of positron emission tomography scan to conventional imaging in the evaluation of advanced head and neck cancers

Angshuman Dutta, B. G. Chaitra, Harkirat Singh


Background: Advanced stages of head and neck cancers need careful evaluation by imaging to rule out multiple nodal and distant metastasis which might influence management and prognosis. The aim of the study was to compare the role of PETCT scan to MRI in the initial evaluation in advanced cancers of head and neck.

Methods: The study included 46 patients having advanced stages of head and neck squamous cancers. The patients underwent clinical examination, endoscopy, an initial CT/MRI of the disease site and conventional metastatic workup with an X-ray Chest and USG abdomen. The patients then underwent PET/CT. Tumor restaging was done after the PETCT and the results of CT/ MRI to PETCT were compared.  

Results: There was upstaging of disease in patients with identification of multiple/ bilateral nodes and distant metastasis following PETCT.

Conclusions:PETCT scan has an impact on the initial upstaging staging of disease compared to conventional imaging. 



Head and neck cancer, Positron emission tomography scan, Imaging

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