If cancer of unknown primary (CUP) is suspected, you may have a procedure called an endoscopy. This is used to look inside the body for any abnormal areas. A thin, flexible tube with a light and camera on the end, called an endoscope, is inserted through a natural opening (such as the mouth) or through a small cut made by the surgeon.
Your doctor can also use the endoscope to take a biopsy at the same time if they see something suspicious. The most common types of endoscopies are listed below.
Type of endoscopy
What may be checked
Where the tube is inserted
|bronchoscopy or endobronchial ultrasound (EBUS)||lungs or respiratory|
|mouth or nose|
|colonoscopy||colon (large bowel)||anus|
|colposcopy||vagina and cervix||vagina held open by|
an instrument called
a speculum so the
doctor can look inside
|gastroscopy||stomach and first part of the small bowel||mouth|
|laparoscopy||stomach, liver, uterus||small cuts in abdomen|
|laryngoscopy||larynx (voice box)||mouth|
|sigmoidoscopy||lower part of the|
colon (large bowel)
|thoracoscopy||lungs||small cut in the chest|
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Prof Linda Mileshkin, Medical Oncologist, Clinical Researcher, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; Christine Bradfield, Consumer; Cindy Bryant, Consumer; Dr Maria Cigolini, Head, Department of Palliative Medicine, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, and Clinical Lecturer, The University of Sydney, NSW; Mary Duffy, Advanced Practice Nurse and Nurse Coordinator, Lung Service, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; Karen Hall, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council SA; Dr Andrew Oar, Radiation Oncologist, Icon Cancer Centre, Gold Coast University Hospital, QLD; Dr Siobhan O’Neill, Medical Oncologist, Nelune Comprehensive Cancer Centre, NSW; Prof Penelope Schofield, Department of Psychological Sciences and the Iverson Health Innovation Research Institute, Swinburne University of Technology, and Head, Behavioural Science in Cancer, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; Frank Stoss, Consumer.
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