The first step in establishing a treatment program for your child is forming a precise rhabdomyosarcoma diagnosis. In the Hemato-Oncology Division at Sheba Medical Center, our pathologists and clinicians use cutting-edge technologies and top-tier skills to assess all test results quickly and precisely.
When our doctor suspects your child may have RMS, diagnostic testing can include:
Specific blood tests, including a complete blood count, provide information about the levels of different types of cells and chemicals in your child’s blood.
We may use CT scans, which are more detailed than general x-rays, to create detailed images of different parts of the body, including muscles, bones, and fat. A CT scan can show how large a tumor is and if it has spread into nearby body structures, such as lymph nodes.
We may use MRIs instead of a CT scan to inspect the tumor and the tissues around it. An MRI is particularly useful when the tumor is in the head, neck, arm, leg, or pelvis. Because this type of imaging shows muscle, fat, and connective tissue, it can help our doctors to stage the tumor precisely.
This imaging technique can be used to view internal organs as they function, as well as to evaluate blood flow through various vessels.
A biopsy involves removing a small piece of the tumor to view it under a microscope. If the results of a physical exam or imaging procedures indicate that your child may have RMS, a biopsy is the only way to confirm the diagnosis.
Bone marrow aspiration and biopsy
When RMS has been diagnosed, a bone marrow aspiration and biopsy may be performed to determine whether the diseased cells have reached the bone marrow.