No imaging algorithms for diagnostic imaging in patients suffering from Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) have been established so far and thus staging work-up is challenging. Long presentation-to-treatment intervals determine further treatment course and, consequently, have an impact on clinical outcome in patients with MCC.
In this retrospective study, diagnostic imaging of 37 MCC patients was analyzed. CT, ultrasound, and PET/PET–CT imaging for primary staging work-up with time frames from patients´ initial presentation and imaging until completion of tumor staging were analyzed.
Tumor staging could be completed earlier when (1) less examinations (35 vs. 42 days) were carried out or (2) computed tomography was used as the initial imaging modality (28 vs. 35 days). Furthermore, CT imaging, when used as the initial imaging study, was linked to less follow-up imaging (3 vs. 6).
Computed tomography as the first-staging imaging technique in MCC patients leads to less follow-up studies and fastest completion of tumor staging.
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- Computed tomography accelerates staging in patients with Merkel cell carcinoma
Boban M. Erovic
- Springer Berlin Heidelberg
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