How is cancer of unknown primary diagnosed?
A number of tests may be performed to investigate symptoms that might be cancer and to try and find out where the primary cancer is.
Some of the tests used to investigate symptoms of cancer include:
- a physical examination
- examination of a blood sample
- examination of a urine and/or stool sample
- a chest X-ray
- a mammogram
- taking a sample of an unusual area of tissue (biopsy) for examination under a microscope.
If these tests confirm that cancer is present, imaging tests, such as X-ray, ultrasound, computed tomography (CT) scan, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or positron emission tomography (PET) scan may be used to look at different parts of the body.
An internal examination may also be conducted using an endoscope – a thin flexible tube with a light on the end.