X-rays, scans, and endoscopic procedures are useful for staging purposes. Radiological reports should define the location of the cancer, the size of the tumor, involvement of adjacent structures, or existence of distant disease. They can help determine the resectability of the tumor. All radiologic reports should be reviewed to determine the extent of disease.
According to the Commission on Cancer (COC) of the American College of Surgeons, the following terms are to be interpreted as evidence of tumor involvement: adherent, apparent, compatible with, consistent with, encroaching upon, fixation/fixed, induration, into, onto, out onto, probable, suspect, and suspicious. The following terms are to be interpreted as no tumor involvement: approaching, equivocal, possible, questionable, suggests, and very close to.