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One whole body MRI could replace multiple cancer scans

Recently National Institute for Health Research found that one whole scan can assess the spread of a patient's cancer instead of current multiple scans. Researchers says this new whole body scan cut down multiple scans which may help to reduce treatment waiting times and save lives.

Recently two studies published in Lancet Respiratory Medicine and Lancet Gastroenterology and Hepatology show that for patients with non-small cell lung cancer and colorectal cancer one whole-body MRI (WB-MRI) scan can work just as well as multiple scans at assessing cancer spread and leads to the same treatment decisions - but is quicker, cheaper, preferred by patients and involves less exposure to radiation.

Using WB-MRI NSCLC patients were fully assessed within an average of 13 days when compared to 19 days using multiple scans. One of the Director of the NIHR’s said “ These are promising results which suggest that just one whole body MRI scan is as good as multiple scans for different body sites for for informing treatment decisions. The process is quicker and preferred by patients”.

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