Scan can tell if chemotherapy is effective after one round of treatment

September 27, 2016

LONDON, Sept. 27 (UPI) -- Head and neck cancers are notoriously difficult to treat, but researchers say a new scanning technique could help determine whether chemotherapy is effective after just one round of treatment.

Combined PET and CT scans accurately measure a tumor's energy use and ability to convert glucose to energy, offering doctors a faster method of measuring treatment response for head and neck cancers, researchers at the Institute of Cancer Research report in a study published in the Journal of Nuclear Medicine.

Whether patients need a different chemotherapy, increase in radiotherapy or otherwise, researchers in the study were looking for ways of measuring cancer and cancer response to prevent patients from experiencing side effects unnecessarily or to alter treatment paths when they don't work.

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