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How do they compare scans?

abita's picture
abita
Posts: 1070
Joined: Dec 2017

So, this whole time, I have been thinking that they measure the tumors on the new scan, then compare it to the typed out notes from last radiologist.

But this scan makes me wonder, are they looking at this one AND the last scan, measuring both, and making their own findings for both scans?

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 5511
Joined: Jan 2013

I look forward to hearing the answer. 

Tru

myAZmountain
Posts: 420
Joined: Apr 2018

Abita do you get your results from your March 3 scan soon?  In my experience radiologists read the current scan and then compare to previous scans (usually indicating date) and note any size difference and any new growth. It was explained to me my lung surgeon that deals only with cancer that CTscans vary depending on where they slice the tissue, how far apart the slices are, if you are positioned on the stretcher haphazardly, and if you are not fully inhaling. If I remember correctly the measurements are done by the computer used by the radiologists. I used to make the radiologist sit down and show me the scans lol, got away with it becasue my spouse worked at the same facility. They would put up the current scan and previous ones and show me the progression of the nodules. I don't know if you could have your docs do that? In any case I do not think the radiologist reading your current scan would alter any of the measuremnts/finding of the previous scan, only compare them to your current one. Praying that you get good results!!

abita's picture
abita
Posts: 1070
Joined: Dec 2017

The scan was put into the portal a little after midnight, so I looked there. I get the results from oncologist on Tuesday. 

The reason that i asked was because up until my last scan, this one tumor was about 1.5 by 1.5, and that is like for over a year. WIth one radiologist explaining that there was also some impaction around the tumor. Last scan and this one, that tumor is about 3.3 by 1.6, and it is compared to about the same, starting with a 3. instead of 1., and the notes say that the size is about the same. Up until then, I thought they looked at the written down results of last scan, and compared to the new physical scan. They also didn't even mention the size of the two smaller ones.

myAZmountain
Posts: 420
Joined: Apr 2018

Laughing

NewHere's picture
NewHere
Posts: 1340
Joined: Feb 2015

As to reading reports in general, each person reading things may see or report different things where they have done studies on this.   They would give someone 50 scans, including duplicates of the same scan, and they would issue two reports. 

I have had that with my scans.  Some report some things, some another depending on what the individual reading sees.  They pay lip service to comparing it to prior scans.  I thought some things disappeared.  Just weren't mentioned.  They will also remeasure things occasionally.  

There are also factors of timing and movement as myAZ said.

worriedson714's picture
worriedson714
Posts: 325
Joined: Dec 2019

My dad has choosen to wait and watch what one oncologist thinks is for sure cancer and radiation oncologist seems alot less sure about . And with my dad the oncologist just comes in tells us if anything is different or not no other information no looking at the scans in front of us . The radiation oncologist literally pulls the scan up in front of us and compares the size of the " mass " to see if it grew . The radiation oncologist doesn't even look at the report he seems to come up with his own opinion and compare . The oncologist usually just repeats exactly what the report tells him so I think different docs compare different ways in my dad's case at least . 

abita's picture
abita
Posts: 1070
Joined: Dec 2017

What is a radiation oncologist?

Annabelle41415's picture
Annabelle41415
Posts: 6722
Joined: Feb 2009

Mine was awesome and explained everything to me more than the other doctors.  If you have radiation, then you have a radiation oncologist.  Usually a lot of rectal patients will get radiation, so therefore a seperate oncologist. 

Kim

Kaleidoscope49
Posts: 34
Joined: Aug 2020

I have a medical oncologist that handles my treatment plan, chemo and all follow up. When I started radiation, I added a radiation oncologist to my care team. He handles specifically the radiation treatments only. 

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 5511
Joined: Jan 2013

I love my Rad Onc. 

They specialize in radiation for Cancer patients.   

Here is a good link https://medschool.ucla.edu/body.cfm?id=1158&action=detail&ref=744

Tru

abita's picture
abita
Posts: 1070
Joined: Dec 2017

I didn't even realize that it was a separate oncologist who handles the radiation.

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 5511
Joined: Jan 2013

that you were blissfully unaware. It means you didn't get raditation, which for me, was the most horrendous part of the whole process. 

Tru

Annabelle41415's picture
Annabelle41415
Posts: 6722
Joined: Feb 2009

The radiation caused so much damage, as you know, to much more than just the tumor.

Kim

Kaleidoscope49
Posts: 34
Joined: Aug 2020

Agreed! It was brutal for me. Glad to have it over!

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