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A Journal on Obstetrics and Gynecology

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Minerva Ginecologica 2009 February;61(1):45-51

language: English

Nuclear imaging and cervical cancer

Grigsby P. W.

Department of Radiation Oncology Division of Nuclear Medicine Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology Alvin J. Siteman Cancer Center Washington University Medical Center St. Louis, MO, USA


The staging of patients with cervical cancer is in accordance with the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO) clinical staging system. The traditional and current radiographic imaging studies allowed by FIGO to influence the clinical stage of the disease are the chest X-ray, the intravenous urogram and plain X-rays of the skeleton. The development and use of complimentary imaging studies may guide and direct therapy, but it does not change the clinical stage of the disease. Other X-ray studies that have been used are the barium enema and the lymphangiogram. Both computerized tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) have become commonplace in the evaluation of these patients. Most recently, position emission tomography (PET) with CT (PET/CT) is the preferred whole-body imaging study for patients with invasive cervical cancer. Single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) combined with CT, the SPECT/CT, is also now being utilized in patients with cervical cancer. These new imaging modalities permit increased accuracy in the diagnosis and staging of cervical cancer, improve the selection and guidance of therapy, reduce uncertainties in the monitoring of response to therapy, and provide a means for objective long-term surveillance.

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