If a physician suspects that a person has a recurrent breast cancer based on the results of a mammogram or physical examination or on signs and symptoms, he or she may be suggested for further tests to confirm his or her diagnosis.
Tests and procedures may include:
Imaging tests: The type of imaging tests that a patient undergo will depend on the specific situation. Imaging tests may include computerized tomography (CT) scan, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), X-ray, positron emission tomography (PET) scan, or bone scan. It is not necessary that every person needs every test. The doctor will decide which tests are most helpful depending on the particular situation.
Biopsy: A biopsy procedure can be prescribed by the doctor in order to collect suspicious cells to be examined, which is the only way to confirm the presence of cancer. A pathologist determines whether the cancer is a recurrence or a new type of cancer. Tests may indicate whether the cancer is sensitive to hormone therapy or targeted therapy.