Published online May 21, 2018. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v24.i19.2047
Peer-review started: March 30, 2018
First decision: April 11, 2018
Revised: April 28, 2018
Accepted: May 11, 2018
Article in press: May 11, 2018
Published online: May 21, 2018
Core tip: Pancreatic cancer is becoming a leading cause of cancer related death in Western societies. Rapid and accurate diagnosis of a pancreatic mass is crucial for improving outcomes. Current practice utilises multi-detector computed tomography and/or magnetic resonance imaging, with a dedicated pancreas protocol as the initial modality. Endoscopic ultrasound is the preferred method to further evaluate pancreatic masses as it has more superior diagnostic accuracy and can provide tissue acquisition. Pitfalls in diagnosis of pancreatic cancer are discussed, as careful recognition of these conditions is important. There are exciting developments of new diagnostic techniques that open the possibility of personalised cancer medicine.