Fast Five Quiz: Cholangiocarcinoma Presentation and Diagnosis

N. Joseph Espat, MD, MS


February 20, 2020

Ultrasonography or CT scanning is generally performed initially, followed by some form of cholangiography. Both ultrasound and CT scanning may demonstrate ductal dilatation and large lesions. Small lesions and distal cholangiocarcinomas may be difficult to visualize through these methods.

Cholangiography techniques include magnetic resonance (MR) cholangiography, endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP), and PTC. MR cholangiography enables imaging of the bile ducts and can lead to disease staging when combined with MR angiography. ERCP demonstrates the site of obstruction using direct retrograde dye injection and endoscopy. PTC may allow access to proximal lesions with both right and left hepatic duct obstructions. It is possible to obtain material for cytologic studies via ERCP or PTC.

Learn more about cholangiocarcinoma imaging studies and workup procedures.


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