Early detection and accurate diagnosis play a significant role in the successful management of cancer. Without an accurate diagnosis, it would be challenging for oncologists to come up with the right treatment plan for patients. The expert team at HCG is skilled at diagnosing, staging, treating and monitoring simple to most complex cancers and haematological malignancies.
Imaging is one of the crucial aspects of cancer care, as the results obtained from various imaging tests help the specialists make informed clinical decisions.
Radiology and Imaging at HCG
The radiology and imaging department at HCG houses state-of-the-art imaging equipment and a large team of skilled radiologists in order to provide superior diagnostic support to our patients.
The unit has all major imaging technologies, namely PET CT (Analogue/Digital), Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), Digital Mammography, etc., which help in detecting suspicious lesions relatively better than their historical counterparts. Along with these tests, the department also facilitates other imaging tests, namely X-ray scan, ultrasound scan, endoscopy, etc. The results obtained from these tests, along with the results obtained from other analyses, such as biopsy, blood tests, etc., help doctors in arriving at a definitive diagnosis.
AUTOMATED BREAST VOLUME SCANNER
Automated Breast Volume Scanner (ABVS) is the latest diagnostic technology in breast cancer detection; this is, especially, designed to detect breast cancer in patients with dense tissues. ABVS is the world's first multi-use ultrasound system that automatically acquires complete, high-resolution images of the breasts in just 10 minutes. Early detection through ABVS increases the chances of a positive clinical outcome among breast cancer patients.
Digital mammography is a safe and accurate imaging test recommended for breast cancer detection. It uses the same technique as film mammography, except that the image is recorded directly onto a computer. The image captured on the computer can then be enlarged or highlighted for proper analysis.
The biggest advantage of digital mammography is the accurate diagnosis even in those patients with dense breast tissues.
PET CT (ANALOGUE/DIGITAL)
PET CT combines PET scan and CT scan for better imaging. During a PET scan, which is a form of nuclear medicine, a radioactive isotope is injected into the body to study the molecular activity of the body cells. CT scan, on the other hand, takes a series of X-ray images of the internal structures and these images are put together to create a 3-dimensional picture. The tissues with abnormal activities appear as bright spots during the scanning, and this makes the diagnosis easier.
PET CT scans are necessary for cancer diagnosis, cancer staging, treatment planning, monitoring and evaluating cancer recurrence. Another variant of the conventional PET CT is the digital PET CT, wherein the scanning duration and dosage of the radioactive isotope are reduced by a large degree.
MAGNETIC RESONANCE IMAGING (MRI)
Magnetic resonance imaging or MRI supports the generation of exceptionally detailed images of organs, such as the brain, spine, prostate, uterus and liver. This allows the specialists to differentiate between benign and potentially hazardous masses. This high-resolution imaging may also help in detecting cancers even before they start showing symptoms.
Interventional radiology is a sub-speciality of radiology discipline that utilises image-guided, minimally-invasive procedures to diagnose, treat and manage cancers and various other health disorders.
Interventional radiology is a sub-speciality of radiology discipline, and it utilises image-guided, minimally-invasive procedures to diagnose, treat and manage cancers and various other health disorders.
These procedures are aimed towards reducing the risk of treatment-related complications for patients and helping them recover at a faster rate.
Interventional radiology is both a diagnostic and therapeutic speciality that includes a wide range of image-guided minimally invasive treatment procedures and invasive imaging techniques.
Some of the key interventional radiology procedures include chemoembolisation, radioembolisation, radiofrequency ablation, cryoablation, etc. Most of these procedures do not need an overnight stay, and patients can receive them as an outpatient.
These procedures are often combined with other treatment approaches in order to enhance of the overall effectiveness of the treatment administered.
Key Services Offered:
Chemoembolisation (TACE and DEB)
Radiofrequency ablation (RFA)
PICC line placement
Port catheter placement
Tunnelled catheter placement
Paracentesis or Thoracentesis
PleurX catheter placement
Percutaneous biliary drainage
Stenting for the malignancies of the bile duct, oesophagus and intestine
Portal vein embolisation
Just like diagnosis, screening also plays a significant role in cancer management through its ability to catch cancers in their early stages. At HCG, patients can get screened for breast cancer, cervical cancer, prostate cancer, GI cancer, etc. If there are any abnormalities found during the screening, the doctors will recommend further tests such as imaging through PET CT, MRI or X-ray, which may also be followed by additional evaluation via blood tests and biopsy.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What are my next steps after my cancer diagnosis?
Once you are diagnosed with cancer, you may have to get in touch with a cancer specialist. He/she will let you know the possible treatment options for your condition, the outcomes that you can expect, the possible after-effects, after-care practices, etc.
A few patients prefer going for a second opinion to be sure of what has been diagnosed.
Any questions and concerns, no matter how small they are, should be discussed with your specialist. This will help you fight cancer better.
2. Do I immediately have to start with the treatment after my diagnosis?
This depends on the type, location and stage of cancer you are diagnosed with. Your doctor is the best person to decide the right time to start your treatment.
For some cancers, monitoring is done for some time before the treatment, while some cancers need immediate medical attention.
Please make sure to talk to your doctor, if you have any concerns about the treatment.
3. How accurate is a PET CT scan for cancer?
PET CT scan is one of the most efficient imaging techniques for cancer diagnosis. Since it combines two scans together, the results are more accurate, detailed and help doctors plan the treatment precisely.
Studies show that a PET CT scan shows an accuracy of up to 97% for many cancer types.
That said, in rare cases, PET CT scans may lead to false positives and false negatives. In such cases, doctors will carefully assess your symptoms and recommend additional tests to gain proper information about your health condition.
4. What are the common questions that I should ask my doctor after my cancer diagnosis?
There are plenty of questions that you need to ask at various stages of your cancer journey. However, the main questions that you need to ask after your diagnosis are:
1. Can you please provide more information on my diagnosis – the type, location, the stage, has it spread to other organs?
2. What are my treatment options?
3. What is my prognosis?