Cervical cancer: role of imaging

Laura Grincevičiūtė1,  Justė Gaižauskaitė1


1Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Academy of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Kaunas, Lithuania


Cervical cancer is a huge problem worldwide, including Lithuania. Squamous cell carcinoma

accounts for approximately 75% of cervical carcinomas. The other 25% include adenocarcinomas and adenosquamous carcinomas (20%), as well as small cell neuroendocrine carcinomas (< 5%). Cervical carcinoma is the second most common malignancy among women worldwide. The mortality rates in developed countries are decreasing due to cervical cancer screening programs which help to detect premalignant lesions with Pap smears and HPV testing. Radiological imaging plays an important role in cervical cancer extent evaluation and treatment planning. In recent years, radiological imaging techniques are rapidly evolving and that expands research in this field. Now we can accurately detect where the tumor is, identify its origin, whether it is benign or malignant or to early depict metastases or residives. Endometrial and ovarian cancer are staged surgically, but cervical cancer staging is only clinical. The new 2018 FIGO (International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics) staging system permits, where available, to incorporate Computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and positron emission tomography (PET) into cervical cancer staging. In this article we will review the role of these imaging techniques, as well as the role of ultrasound (US) diagnostics, as it is usually the first imaging tool for evaluation of various gynecological symptoms.

Keywords: cervical cancer; radiology; FIGO