NCCN Guidelines for Patients
Pancreatic Cancer, Version 1.2017
Pancreatic cancer testing
The first test recommended to check for pancreatic
cancer is a special type of CT scan using a
pancreatic protocol. A pancreatic protocol scan is
done in a special way to get the clearest and most
accurate images of the pancreas. It allows your
doctors to assess whether there is any tumor in the
pancreas, and if so, whether the tumor involves any
of the nearby blood vessels.
Results and next tests
If the initial CT scan shows a tumor in your pancreas,
then your doctor will order a few more tests to plan
treatment. A team of doctors who are experts in
different areas of cancer care should review the test
results and plan treatment.
These next tests may include:
EUS with FNA biopsy of the pancreas. This
is sometimes also performed if the CT scan
does not clearly show a tumor in the pancreas,
but your doctor is still concerned about the
possibility of cancer.
ERCP or MRCP especially if you have jaundice
and evidence of a blocked bile duct.
Blood tests to check if your liver is working well.
Imaging tests that usually include a CT scan of
Tissue sample (biopsy)
if there are signs of
metastases. For example, a biopsy of the liver if
disease is seen on an imaging test.
If no metastases were found, see Guide 5 for
recommended follow-up tests. If metastases were
found, see the section on metastatic pancreatic
cancer treatment later in this chapter.