How can my doctor tell if I have nasopharyngeal cancer?
Your doctor might use endoscopy (say: "in-dos-ko-pee") to try to see the cancer. For this exam, a thin tube with a very small camera on the end is put into your nose. This lets your doctor get a closer look at the cancer tumor.
During endoscopy, your doctor might take a small piece from the tumor. This is called a biopsy sample. The piece of tumor is then sent to a lab where it is looked at under a microscope.
Your doctor might also send you to have an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging). This exam takes a special "picture" of your nasopharynx so that your doctor can see the size of the tumor.
Nasopharyngeal Cancer and the Southeast Asian Patient by H Cheng (American Family Physician May 01, 2001, http://www.aafp.org/afp/20010501/1776.html)
Written by familydoctor.org editorial staff