Tests and procedures used to diagnose esophageal cancer include:
- Using a scope to examine your esophagus (endoscopy). During endoscopy, your doctor passes a hollow tube equipped with a lens (endoscope) down your throat and into your esophagus. Using the endoscope, your doctor examines your esophagus, looking for cancer or areas of irritation.
- Collecting a sample of tissue for testing (biopsy). Your doctor may use a special scope passed down your throat into your esophagus (endoscope) to collect a sample of suspicious tissue (biopsy). The tissue sample is sent to a laboratory to look for cancer cells.
Esophageal cancer staging
When you're diagnosed with esophageal cancer, your doctor works to determine the extent (stage) of the cancer. Your cancer's stage helps determine your treatment options.
Tests used in staging esophageal cancer include computerized tomography (CT) scan and positron emission tomography (PET).
The stages of esophageal cancer are:
May 15, 2014
- Stage I. This cancer occurs in the superficial layers of cells lining your esophagus.
- Stage II. The cancer has invaded deeper layers of your esophagus lining and may have spread to nearby lymph nodes.
- Stage III. The cancer has spread to the deepest layers of the wall of your esophagus and to nearby tissues or lymph nodes.
- Stage IV. The cancer has spread to other parts of your body.
- Esophageal and esophagogastric junction cancers. Fort Washington, Pa.: National Comprehensive Cancer Network. http://www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/f_guidelines.asp. Accessed Feb. 14, 2014.
- Niederhuber JE, et al., eds. Abeloff's Clinical Oncology. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier; 2014. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Feb. 14, 2014.
- Cameron JL, et al., eds. Current Surgical Therapy. 11th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2014. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Feb. 14, 2014.
- What you need to know about cancer of the esophagus. National Cancer Institute. http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/wyntk/esophagus. Accessed Feb. 14, 2014.
- Adult cancer pain. Fort Washington, Pa.: National Comprehensive Cancer Network. http://www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/f_guidelines.asp. Accessed Feb. 14, 2014.
- Golden AK. Decision Support System. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Dec. 5, 2013.
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