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Radiation MRI vs CT vs ultrasound

livealive's picture
Posts: 127
Joined: Feb 2012

If CT is too much radiation can they do MRI ? I hear ultrasounds are not as confirming. Any facts ?

garym's picture
Posts: 1651
Joined: Nov 2009

He's the resident glow worm on that subject.

One Lucky Girl's picture
One Lucky Girl
Posts: 68
Joined: Feb 2012

Hi Raj,

My doctor ordered a yearly MRI (first one at 3 months post-op) alternating with a yearly ultrasound (starting 9 months post-op) for my follow-ups b/c he doesn't want to expose me to the radiation of CT scans. But -- I am considered a very low risk for recurrence and I am not sure if the MRIs are as detailed as CT scans.

livealive's picture
Posts: 127
Joined: Feb 2012

Thanks OLG (until I know ur name)
I am told intermediate risk higher end, but am a statistical anomaly, in a study of 1200+, only 26 had invasion with a <4cm tumor, so there is not much data. That said, the monitoring I am being offered by the surgeon is ultrasound + xray every 6 months, UNLESS I participate in the pazopanib trial which has been an ongoing debate. I since met other doctors who are wiling to monitor more frequently, some every 3 months and some every 6, but the surgeon is cautioning me against radiation, but at the same time the trial will have me do 3 CTs a year. So they have me very confused not only about the trial, but even monitoring.

Texas_wedge's picture
Posts: 2807
Joined: Nov 2011

Raj, you are a good searcher - you can easily find innumerable sites on the topic. One I would suggest that seems to be very up-to-date and comprehensive is an 'insider' one (education for medicos) and of the pages there the most relevant are pp 6 and 7 so go to

http://www.medscape.org/viewarticle/488088_5 on the drawbacks of CT, and

http://www.medscape.org/viewarticle/488088_6 entitled MRI POISED TO BECOME "THE" WHOLE-BODY SCREENING STUDY

Each of CT, PET, MRI and US has its own strengths and weaknesses and some are better for soft tissues, others for bones etc. Your doctors (medical imaging experts, anyway) should be able to tell you all you need to know to decide whether sonograms and MRI will suffice for your future needs.

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