Scan

My dad has been diagnosed with tongue cancer,very advanced and malignant.
He has to go for a scan,can anyone tell me what this is? what they do? what they are looking for etc?
Also he has to have major surgery,what does this mean? what will he have to have done.
I have never really heard of mouth cancer before until my dad said he had it so i really dont know any more than what he tells me,and he isnt one for sharing his emotions or letting people know how bad things are.
I would really appreciate it if anyone can share any knowledge they might have,as it is very scary not knowing and with cancer being one of 'those' words that put fright into you even though it might be curable or easily dealt with. Confused
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