Imaging helps with initial diagnosis, staging, and monitoring. Primary care physicians and specialists work with radiologists who specialize in diagnostic imaging to choose the best imaging test; choice is based on the type of lesion suspected and its anatomic location.
Many imaging tests (eg, x-rays, CT, radionuclide scanning) use ionizing radiation and radiographic contrast agents; the associated risks to patients are usually small but should be considered.
Last full review/revision January 2015 by Hakan Ilaslan, MD
Content last modified January 2015