NICE guideline 3: Working out how far pancreatic cancer has spread
3.1 If you have recently been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer but haven’t already had a CT scan, you should be offered one. The scan should include the chest, abdomen (tummy) and pelvis (area below the belly button).
The FDG-PET/CT scan helps to confirm whether it is possible to remove the cancer.
3.3 If the doctors need more information to decide on your care, they should consider one or more of the following:
- an MRI scan to check if the cancer has spread to the liver
- an endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) to help work out the stage of the cancer
- a laparoscopy if surgery is a possibility, but there is a chance the cancer may have spread.
Read other sections of the NICE guidelines for pancreatic cancer:
- Specialist pancreatic multidisciplinary teams
- Emotional (psychological) support
- Managing pain
- Managing diet and nutrition
- Relieving a blocked bile duct or duodenum
- Managing resectable (operable) and borderline resectable pancreatic cancer
- Managing pancreatic cancer that can’t be removed with surgery (inoperable or unresectable cancer)
Published: August 2018
Review date: August 2020