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Cancer Dictionary: A

Cancer Dictionary Index

  • Autologous Transplant

    Means tissue taken from a patient and returned to the same patient. A transplant that uses stem cells taken previously from the patient (rather than stem cells from a donor is called an autologous stem cell transplant). […]

  • Allogenic Transplant

    An allogeneic stem cell transplant is a procedure in which a person receives blood-forming stem cells (cells from which all blood cells develop) from a genetically similar but not identical donor. This may also be called an allogeneic stem cell transplant. […]

  • Arthritis

    Inflammation of a joint […]

  • ??-receptors

    Somewhat smaller fibers than ?-receptors that, like them, are mechanoreceptors and transmit proprioception and vibration […]

  • ?-receptors

    Large nerve fibers in the peripheral nervous system that serve as mechanoreceptors to transmit proprioception and pain […]

  • Annulus fibrosis

    The circular, outer portion of the intervertebral disc consisting of strong, interwoven fibers […]

  • Ankylosing spondylitis (AS)

    An inflammatory arthritis of the spine associated with pain and stiffness that can result in the fusion (ankylosis) of the spinal joints and ligaments […]

  • Anterolisthesis

    Forward slippage of one vertebra (or other skeletal structure) over another […]

  • Allopathy

    The use of conventional medical and surgical treatments […]

  • Aromatase inhibitor

    A drug that prevents the formation of estradiol, a female hormone, by interfering with an aromatase enzyme. Aromatase inhibitors are used as a type of hormone therapy for postmenopausal women who have hormone-dependent breast cancer […]

  • Androgen deprivation therapy

    Treatment to suppress or block the production or action of male hormones. This is done by having the testicles removed, by taking female sex hormones, or by taking drugs called antiandrogens. Also called androgen ablation and androgen suppression. […]

  • ALK gene

    A gene that makes a protein called anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK), which may be involved in cell growth. Mutated (changed) forms of the ALK gene and protein have been found in some types of cancer, including neuroblastoma, non-small cell lung cancer, and anaplastic large cell lymphoma. These changes may increase the growth of cancer cells. […]

  • Appendicitis

    Inflammation of the appendix that requires immediate medical attention. […]

  • Appendectomy

    Surgical removal of the appendix to treat appendicitis. […]

  • Anal fissure

    A split or crack in the lining of the anal opening, usually caused by the passage of very hard or watery stools. […]

  • Air contrast barium enema

    An X-ray examination of the entire large intestine (colon) and rectum in which barium and air are introduced gradually into the colon by a rectal tube. This test is recommended along with flexible sigmoidoscopy every five years, starting at age 50, to screen for colorectal cancer and polyps. […]

  • Adhesion

    A band of scar tissue that connects two surfaces of the body that are normally separate. […]

  • Abdominoperineal resection

    Surgical removal of the anus, rectum and sigmoid colon, resulting in the need for a permanent colostomy. […]

  • Adenoma

    Glandular lesion thought to be the precursor to colorectal cancer. […]

  • ASCA (anti-saccharomyces cerevesiae)

    a serology test useful in distinguishing Crohn’s disease from ulcerative colitis and predicting disease course. […]

  • Anti-OmpC (outer membrane protein C)

    the antibody to a specific protein on the outer membrane, recently identified as a significant biomarker. Anti-OmpC levels are high among members of families that have a history of both Crohn’s and colitis. […]

  • anti-androgen withdrawal response

    A decrease in PSA caused by the withdrawal of an anti-androgen such as Casodex or flutamide after CHT begins to fail; occurs when there are PCa cells that have mutated to feed on the anti-androgen rather than T and DHT; withdrawal kills those cells. […]

  • anti-androgen

    A drug used to block the production or interfere with the action of male sex hormones. […]

  • analog

    In chemistry, a substance that is similar, but not identical, to another. […]

  • adjuvant

    An additional treatment used to increase the effectiveness of the primary therapy; radiation therapy and hormonal therapy are often used as adjuvant treatments following a radical prostatectomy. […]

  • Active surveillance

    Active surveillance is an option offered to patients with very low-risk prostate cancer (low grade, low stage, localized disease). Patients are monitored carefully over time for signs of disease progression. A PSA blood test and digital rectal exam (DRE) and prostate biopsy are performed at physician-specified intervals. Signs of disease progression will trigger immediate active […]

  • 5-alpha-reductase inhibitors

    A class of drugs used to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). They block the conversion of testosterone into dihydrotestosterone, the major male sex hormone within the cells of the prostate. […]

  • Adenocarcinoma

    Any one of a large group of malignant, epithelial cell tumors of the glands. Specific tumors are diagnosed and named by cytologic identification of the tissue affected. […]

  • Antineoplastons

    are an alternative form of cancer treatment that involves using a group of synthetic chemicals called antineoplastons to protect the body from disease. Antineoplastons are made up mostly of peptides and amino acids originally taken from human blood and urine. […]

  • Apheresis

    The process of removing components of a patient’s or donor’s blood and returning the unneeded parts. This process makes it possible to remove desired elements from large volumes of blood. Platelets, red cells, white cells, stem cells, or plasma can be removed separately. Apheresis can also be used to remove undesirable elements from the blood. […]

  • Adenoid Cystic Cancer

    A rare form of cancer that usually begins in the salivary glands. […]

  • Antibody-Dependent Cell-Mediated Cytotoxicity (ADCC)

    An immune response in which antibody, by coating target cells, makes them vulnerable to attack by immune cells. […]

  • Acute bacterial prostatitis

    Prostatitis is inflammation of the prostate. Acute bacterial prostatitis is the least common form of prostatitis caused by bacteria traveling up the urethra and the backward flow of infected urine into the prostatic ducts. […]

  • Adrenaline

    A hormone secreted from the adrenal gland that raises blood pressure, produces a rapid heartbeat and acts a neurotransmitter when the body is subjected to stress or danger; also known as epinephrine. […]

  • Ayurveda

    is a CAM alternative medical system that has been practiced primarily in the Indian subcontinent for 5,000 years. Ayurveda includes diet and herbal remedies and emphasizes the use of body, mind, and spirit in disease prevention and treatment. […]

  • Aneurysm

    An abnormal widening of a portion of a blood vessel. […]

  • Axillary Dissection

    A surgical procedure in which the lymph nodes in the armpit (axillary nodes) are removed and examined to find out if cancer has spread to those nodes and to remove any cancerous lymph nodes. […]

  • Aspirin

    Aspirin is a type of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents (NSAID), a drug used to reduce pain, fever, inflammation, and blood clotting. Aspirin is also being studied in cancer prevention. […]

  • Anaplastic Choroid Plexus Papilloma

    An anaplastic choroid plexus papilloma, also referred to as a choroid plexus tumor, is a rare type of cancer that occurs in the ventricles of the brain. It usually occurs in children younger than two years. Anaplastic refers to cancer cells that divide rapidly and have little or no resemblance to normal cells. […]

  • Aloe

    plant, a member of the lily family, is a common household plant originally from Africa. The most common and widely known species of aloe plant is aloe vera. […]

  • Austrailian Aboriginal Indigenous Medical System (IMS)

    An alternative medical system based on the religion, spirituality, herbal medicine, and rituals of Australian Aboriginal culture used to treat medical and emotional problems. […]

  • Antifungal Agent

    A drug used to treat fungal infections. […]

  • Anatomy

    The physical structure of an internal structure of an organism or any of its parts. […]

  • Artificial insemination

    The clinical insertion of sperm into the woman’s uterus. […]

  • Autoantibody

    An antibody that reacts against a person’s own tissue. […]

  • Allogeneic Bone Marrow Transplant

    An allogeneic bone marrow transplant is a procedure in which a person receives blood-forming stem cells (cells from which all blood cells develop) from a genetically similar but not identical donor. This may also be called an allogeneic stem cell transplant. […]

  • Androgen

    Any steroid hormone that increases male characteristics. […]

  • Autologous Bone Marrow Transplant

    An autologous bone marrow transplant is when the transplanted cells are collected from the patient and returned back to the patient. […]

  • Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML)

    AML is a malignant disorder involving white cells which results in the excessive accumulation of myeloid blast cells in both the marrow and the bloodstream. AML occurs in all ages and is the more common acute leukemia in adults. AML affects a different type of white cell than those affected by ALL. […]

  • Arrhythmia

    An irregular heartbeat. […]

  • Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS)

    A life-threatening disease caused by HIV that is characterized by a breakdown of the body’s immune defenses. […]

  • Age-specific PSA

    An adjustment of the PSA value that accounts for the natural, gradual increase in PSA that occurs with age as the prostate enlarges. […]

  • Antiemetic

    A drug that prevents or relieves nausea and vomiting (emesis), which are common side effects of chemotherapy. […]

  • Arterial Embolization

    Blocking an artery so that the blood cannot flow to the tumor. […]

  • Arthralgia

    Joint pain. […]

  • Antimetabolites

    Antimetabolites are substances that interfere with the body’s chemical processes, such as creating proteins, DNA, and other chemicals needed for cell growth and reproduction. In treating cancer, antimetabolite drugs disrupt DNA reproduction, which in turn prevents cell division and growth on tumors. […]

  • Allergy

    An inappropriate and harmful response of the immune system to normally harmless substances. […]

  • Autoimmune

    A condition in which the body produces antibodies to its own tissue. […]

  • Accelerated Phase

    Refers to chronic myelogenous leukemia that is progressing. The number of immature, abnormal white blood cells in the bone marrow and blood is higher than in the chronic phase, but not as high as in the blast phase. […]

  • Abdomen

    The portion of the body between the thorax and the pelvis. The abdominal cavity contains the inferior portion of the esophagus, the stomach, the intestines, the liver, the spleen, the pancreas, and other organs. […]

  • Areola

    The dark area of skin that surrounds the nipple of the breast. […]

  • Ayurvedic medicine

    An ancient traditional medicine system based on Hindu philosophy and ancient Indian civilization. The human body is seen as a microcosm of the universe, consisting of the five elements of fire, water, earth, air, and ether. Each element corresponds to one of the five senses: sight, taste, smell, touch, and hearing. It embraces the concept […]

  • Agammaglobulinemia

    An almost total lack of the body’s ability to produce antibodies. […]

  • ASCO

    The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) is the world […]

  • Abdominoscopy

    A procedure for examining the contents of the peritoneum in which an electrically illuminated tubular device is passed through a trocar into the abdominal cavity. Also called peritoneoscopy. […]

  • Antitoxins

    Antibodies that inactivate toxins produced by certain bacteria. […]

  • Adamantinomatous Craniopharyngioma

    Adamantinomatous craniopharyngioma is the most frequent form of a craniopharyngioma, a benign brain tumor. Craniopharyngioma may be considered malignant, however, because it can damage the hypothalamus, the area of the brain that controls body temperature, hunger, and thirst. […]

  • Azotemia

    Retention of excessive amounts of nitrogenous compounds in the blood. This toxic condition is caused by failure of the kidneys to remove urea from the blood and is characteristic of uremia. […]

  • Anaplastic Oligoastrocytoma

    An anaplastic oligoastrocytoma is a type of mixed glioma (cancer of the brain) that forms from both two types of glial cells, oligodendrocytes and astrocytes. Anaplastic refers to cancer cells that divide rapidly and have little or no resemblance to normal cells. […]

  • Absolute neutrophil count

    A neutrophil is a type of immune cell (cells that help fight infection) and a type of white blood cell. And absolute neutrophil count measures how many of the white blood cells in the body are neutrophils. […]

  • Actinic Keratosis

    A precancerous condition of thick and scaly patches of skin. […]

  • Ablative Therapy

    Treatment that removes or destroys the function of an organ, as in surgical removal of the organ or the administration of some types of chemotherapy that cause the organ such as the bone marrow to stop functioning. […]

  • Autoimmunity

    A condition in which the body’s immune system mistakenly fights and rejects the body’s own tissue. […]

  • Antiandrogen

    A drug that blocks the action of the male sex hormones. […]

  • Aplastic Anemia

    Bone marrow failure with markedly decreased production of white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets leading to increased risk of infection and bleeding. […]

  • Anaphylactic shock

    A life-threatening allergic reaction characterized by a swelling of body tissues including the throat, difficulty in breathing, and a sudden fall in blood pressure. […]

  • Anticholinergic

     Blocking impulses from the part of the nervous system that controls heartbeat, blood pressure and other responses to stress. A drug that interferes with the effects of acetylcholine. These drugs assist with bladder storage by increasing bladder contractions and are used to treat urge incontinence. […]

  • Atrophy

    To diminish; when an organ diminishes in size. […]

  • AFP Alphafeto Protein

    Alpha-fetoprotein is a protein normally produced by a fetus. Levels of AFP are usually undetectable in the blood of healthy adult men or women (who are not pregnant). An elevated level of AFP may indicate certain diseases, including liver cancer. […]

  • Antinuclear Antibody (ANA)

    A group of antibodies that react against normal components in the cell’s nucleus. […]

  • Angiogram

    An x-ray of blood vessels. A dye is injected into an artery to outline the blood vessels on the x-ray machine. […]

  • Adenovirus

    A group of viruses that cause respiratory tract and eye infections. Adenoviruses used in gene therapy are altered to carry a specific tumor-fighting gene. […]

  • Astrocytomas

    A type of tumor that begins in the brain or spinal cord in small, star-shaped cells called astrocytes. Cells from higher-grade, more abnormal-looking tumors usually grow faster and are more malignant than cells from lower-grade tumors. […]

  • Alpha-Fetoprotein

    Alpha-fetoprotein is a protein normally produced by a fetus. Levels of AFP are usually undetectable in the blood of healthy adult men or women (who are not pregnant). An elevated level of AFP may indicate certain diseases, including liver cancer. […]

  • alpha-1-adrenergic blockers

    A class of drugs used to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) that work by relaxing smooth muscle tissue within the prostate. Also called alpha-blockers. […]

  • Arterial perfusion

    Treatment in which blood is drawn from a patient, pumped through a machine that adds anticancer drugs and returned to the major artery supplying the area being treated. […]

  • Antigen-presenting cells

    B cells, cells that "present" antigen in a form that T cells can recognize. […]

  • Anesthesiologist

    A doctor who uses drugs or gases (anesthetics) to put you to sleep or to make you comfortable during surgery. […]

  • Agonists

    A drug or other substance having a specific cellular affinity that produces a predictable response. […]

  • acupressure

    Hand or finger pressure applied to an acupuncture point on the body […]

  • Asymptomatic

    To be without noticeable symptoms of disease. Many cancers may grow without producing symptoms, especially in the early stages. Screening tests, such as mammography, try to discover developing cancers at the asymptomatic stage, when the chances for cure are usually the highest. […]

  • Axillary Nodes

    The lymph nodes found in the axilla, or armpit region of the body. […]

  • Alpha-adrenergic blockers

    A class of drugs also known as alpha- blockers which are used to treat high blood pressure and other conditions like an enlarged prostate or stress urinary incontinence. […]

  • Azoospermia

    The absence of sperm in the ejaculate fluid. […]

  • antihistamine

     Drug that blocks cell receptors for histamine, either to prevent allergic effects like sneezing and itching or to reduce the rate of certain secretions in the stomach. […]

  • Aspartate aminotransferase (AST)

    Aspartate aminotransferase, also called aspartate transaminase or serum glutamic-oxaloacetic transaminase (SGOT), is an enzyme that is normally present in liver and heart cells. A high level of AST in the blood may be a sign of liver or heart damage, cancer, or other diseases. […]

  • Antithymocyte Globulin

    A protein preparation used to treat and prevent graft-versus-host disease. […]

  • Antivirals

    Drugs used to treat infections caused by viruses. […]

  • Anterior

    At or near the front. […]

  • Absorptive hypercalciuria

    Causes unabsorbed fatty acids to combine with calcium and this causes too much oxalate to be absorbed by the intestines. […]

  • Alpha-blockers

    A class of drugs also known as alpha-adrenergic blockers which are used to treat high blood pressure and other conditions like an enlarged prostate or stress urinary incontinence. […]

  • Albumin

    Albumin is a type of protein found in blood, egg white, milk, and other substances. […]

  • Acute urinary retention

    A complete inability to urinate that requires immediate medical attention. […]

  • Antibodies

    Proteins that are made by lymphocytes (a type of white blood cells) in response to foreign substances called antigens. […]

  • Abnormality

    A variation from a normal structure or function of the body. […]

  • Appendix

    Lymphoid organ in the intestine. […]

  • Antiangiogenesis

    The inhibition of blood vessel formation by a drug so that cancer growth is limited by lack of blood supply. […]

  • Adrenal Gland

    Either of two secretory organs perched atop the kidneys and surrounded by the protective fat capsule of the kidneys. Their main function is to produce hormones which regulate metabolism and control fluid balance and blood pressure. In addition, they produce small amounts of "male" hormones (androgens) and "female" hormones (estrogens and progesterone). […]

  • Anaplasia

    A change in the structure and orientation of cells, characterized by a loss of differentiation and reversion to a more primitive form. Anaplasia is characteristic of malignancy. […]

  • Analgesic

    Any drug that relieves pain. Aspirin and acetaminophen are mild analgesics. […]

  • Attenuated

    Pertaining to the dilution of a solution or the reduction in virulence or toxicity of a microorganism or a drug by weakening it. […]

  • Aneuploid

    Cells that contain an abnormal amount of DNA. […]

  • Antioncogene

    A tumor-suppressing gene. It may act by controlling celllular growth. When an antioncogene is inactivated, tumor cellular proliferation begins and tumor activity accelerates. […]

  • Abdominoperineal

    Pertaining to the abdomen and the perineum, including the pelvic area, female vulva and anus, and male anus and scrotum. […]

  • Adjuvant Chemotherapy

    Adjuvant chemotherapy is additional chemotherapy given after primary treatment. […]

  • Aspiration Biopsy

    The removal of living tissue, for microscopic examination, by suction through a fine needle attached to a syringe. […]

  • Acini

    The sac-like part of the milk-producing glands in the breast. Several acini form a lobule. […]

  • Allergen

    Any substance that causes an allergy. […]

  • Alternative Medical Systems

    are medical systems involving complete systems of theory and practice that have evolved independent of and often prior to the conventional biomedical approach. Homeopathy, traditional Chinese medicine, and Ayurveda are examples of alternative medical systems. […]

  • Allopathic medicine

    Mainstream or modern medicine; based on principles proven through scientific research. Contrast with "alternative medicine." […]

  • Arteries

    Blood vessels that carry blood from the heart to various parts of the body. […]

  • Anaplastic Ependymoma

    An anaplastic ependymoma, also called an ependymal tumor, is a type of brain tumor that arises from the ependyma, a tissue of the central nervous system. Ependymomas may also form in the choroid plexus (ventricles of the brain). Anaplastic refers to cancer cells that divide rapidly and have little or no resemblance to normal cells. […]

  • Antimicrobial

    Pertaining to a substance that kills microorganisms or inhibits their growth or replication. […]

  • Antiestrogen

    A substance (for example, the drug tamoxifen) that blocks the effects of estrogen on tumors. Antiestrogens are used to treat some cancers that depend on estrogen for growth. […]

  • Acupuncture

    Well studied Chinese therapy that uses placement of needles to relieve various symptoms including the nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy. […]

  • Avascular

    Not receiving a sufficient supply of blood. The reduced flow may be the result of blockage by a blood clot or other deliberate measures. […]

  • Abdominal

    Means within the abdomen, the cavity of this part of the body containing the stomach, intestines and bladder. […]

  • Arthrography

    Method of radiographically visualizing the inside of a joint. […]

  • Allogeneic BMT

    Any bone marrow transplant between two individuals, whether they are related or unrelated. […]

  • Acute Leukemia

    Leukemia that progresses rapidly. […]

  • Atypical Hyperplasia

    A benign condition in which tissue has certain abnormal features. This condition may predispose people to certain types of cancer. […]

  • Anesthesia

    The loss of feeling or sensation as a result of drugs or gases. General anesthesia causes loss of consciousness ("puts you to sleep"). Local or regional anesthesia causes loss of feeling only to a specified area. […]

  • Anus

    The end opening of the digestive system, where solid waste is discharged. […]

  • Apical

    Used to describe the top of something. […]

  • Alexander technique

    A type of movement therapy intended to reduce muscular tension. This technique is useful as a complementary therapy in treating stress, muscular fatigue and neck and back pain. […]

  • Acetylcholine

     A substance that plays an important part in the transmission of nerve impulses in the parasympathetic nervous system which controls smooth muscles including those of the intestine, bladder, urethra and many other organs. […]

  • Autologous

    Derived from the same individual. […]

  • Anti-CEA Antibody

    An antibody against carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA), a protein present on certain types of cancer cells. […]

  • Autograft

    Surgical transplantation of any tissue from one part of the body to another location in the same individual. […]

  • aromatherapy

    The therapeutic use of odors distilled from plant oils; said to be useful in treating headaches, anxiety, and tension. […]

  • Anti-Angiogenesis

    Anti-angiogenesis occurs when new blood formation (angiogenesis) is stopped. Drugs that are used to stop angiogenesis are called anti-angiogenesis drugs. […]

  • Advanced Cancer

    A stage of cancer in which the disease has spread from the primary site to other parts of the body. When the cancer has spread to only the surrounding areas, it is called locally advanced. If it has spread further by traveling through the bloodstream, it is called metastatic. […]

  • Anaplastic

    Pertaining to anaplasia. […]

  • Agaricus mushrooms

    A fungi found in the Brazilian rainforests whose main active constituent has been identified as the polysaccharide-protein complexes called Beta-1,6-D-glucan. […]

  • Atypical

    Not usual; abnormal. This often refers to the appearance of precancerous or cancerous cells. […]

  • Angiogenesis

    Angiogenesis is the process of developing new blood vessels. Tumor angiogenesis is the growth of new blood vessels that tumors require for growth. […]

  • Antioxidant

    A natural or synthetic substance, such as vitamin E, that prevents or delays the oxidation process in cells or tissue. […]

  • Abduction

    Movement of a limb away from the body. […]

  • Adjuvant Therapy

    Adjuvant therapy is a treatment that is added to increase the effectiveness of a primary therapy. Adjuvant therapy may consist of chemotherapy, radiation therapy, biologic or hormonal therapy alone or in combination added after surgery to increase the chances of curing the cancer or prolonging a remission. […]

  • ASTRO

    The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) is a professional organization of radiation oncologists, radiation oncology nurses, medical physicists, radiation therapists, dosimetrists, and biologists (healthcare providers who specialize in the planning and delivery of radiation therapy). With several meeting throughout each year, ASTRO provides opportunities for educational and professional development. […]

  • Acoustic

    Related to hearing or sound. […]

  • Adduction

    Movement of a limb towards the body. […]

  • Alternative Therapy

    Treatments or techniques that are used instead of standard medical treatment to fight cancer. Also called unproven, unconventional, or unorthodox treatments. […]

  • Alopecia

    Hair loss. This often occurs as a result of chemotherapy or less commonly, when radiation therapy is given to the head. […]

  • Arteriography

    X-rays of blood vessels, which are taken after an injection of dye. […]

  • Anastomosis

    A surgical joining of two healthy bowel segments, ducts, or blood vessels to allow flow from one to the other. […]

  • Anesthetic

    A substance that causes lack of feeling or awareness. […]

  • Antigen

    Any substance that, when introduced into the body, is recognized by the immune system as foreign. […]

  • Autoimmune Disease

    A disease that results when the immune system mistakenly attacks the body’s own tissue. Rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus are autoimmune diseases. […]

  • Axilla

    A pyramid-shaped space forming the underside of the shoulder between the upper arm and the side of the chest. Also called armpit. […]

  • Atypical nevi

    Moles whose appearance is different than normal moles. They may be larger and have irregular borders. Their color may not be uniform, and they may be flat or raised above the skin surface. Any mole that appears irregular may be suspect for skin cancer. […]

  • Ascites

    Abnormal buildup of fluid in the abdomen. […]

  • Anemia

    A decrease in the red blood cells and, therefore, the hemoglobin concentration of the blood. This results in a decreased ability of the blood to carry oxygen. If severe, anemia can cause a pale complexion, weakness, fatigue, and shortness of breath on exertion. […]

  • Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL)

    A quickly progressing disease in which too many immature white blood cells called lymphoblasts are found in the blood and bone marrow. Also called ALL or acute lymphocytic leukemia […]

  • Aspergillosis

    An infectious fungal disease that occurs most often in the skin, ears, nasal sinuses, and lungs. […]

  • Angiography

    A procedure to x-ray blood vessels. The blood vessels can be seen because of an injection of a dye that shows up in the x-ray pictures. […]

  • anxiety

     A feeling of apprehension, often characterized by feelings of stress. A debilitating condition of fear, which interferes with normal life functions. […]

  • Antineoplastic

    Pertaining to a substance, procedure, or measure that prevents the proliferation of malignant cells. […]

  • Alkaline phosphatase

    Alkaline phosphatase is an enzyme made in the liver, bone, and the placenta and normally present in high concentrations in growing bone and in bile. Alkaline phosphatase enzyme is often elevated in the leukemic cells in chronic myelogenous leukemia. Abnormally high levels may also indicate disease in bone or liver, bile duct obstruction, or certain […]

  • Autologous Lymphocytes

    A person’s own white blood cells. […]

  • Absorbent Products

    Pads and garments, disposable or reusable, worn to absorb leaked urine. Absorbent products include shields, undergarment pads, combination pad-pant systems, diaper-like garments, and bed pads. […]

  • Anticipatory nausea and vomiting

    A conditioned response where cues that remind the patient of chemotherapy set off the identical physical response used to reduce or prevent nausea and vomiting. […]

  • Abscess

    An abscess is a sign of an infection. It is a collection of pus in part of the body that is usually swollen and inflamed. […]

  • Art Therapy

    A form of treatment used to help people with physical and emotional problems by using creative activities to express emotions. It provides a way for people to come to terms with emotional conflicts, increase self-awareness, and express unspoken and often unconscious concerns abouth their illness. […]

  • Antibiotic

    An antimicrobial agent, derived from cultures of a microorganism or produced semisynthetically, used to treat infections. Some cancer treatments may suppress a person’s immune system, so antibiotics may be used to prevent or treat infection. […]

  • Active Immunity

    Immunity produced by the body in response to stimulation by a disease-causing organism or a vaccine. […]

  • Anaplastic Astrocytoma

    An anaplastic astrocytoma is a malignant tumor that begins in the brain or spinal cord in small, star-shaped cells called astrocytes. Anaplastic refers to cancer cells that divide rapidly and have little or no resemblance to normal cells. […]

  • Antiserum

    A serum that contains antibodies. […]

  • Apoptosis

    A series of events that occurs within a cell that leads to its death. […]

  • Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (ALL)

    Acute lymphocytic leukemia is an aggressive (fast-growing) type of leukemia, a blood cancer. In ALL, too many immature white blood cells, called lymphoblasts, are present in the blood and bone marrow. […]

  • Antidepressants

    Medications used to treat depression and other related conditions. […]

  • Angiomyolipoma

    A benign tumor consisting of blood vessels, fatty tissue and muscle elements, usually occurring in the kidney. […]

  • ADL Activities of Daily Life

    Activities of daily life are the tasks everyday life, such as eating, dressing, getting into or out of a bed or chair, taking a bath or shower, and using the toilet. […]

  • Antineoplastic Agent

    A drug that prevents, kills, or blocks growth and spread of cancer. […]

  • Autosome

    Any chromosome that is not a sex chromosome and that appears as a homologous pair in the somatic cell. Humans have twenty two pairs of autosomes, which are involved in transmitting all genetic traits and conditions other than those that are sex-linked. […]

  • Autologous Marrow (Stem Cell) Infusion

    This technique, often referred to as transplantation, involves the harvesting of stem cells from a patient’s marrow or blood. The stem cells are usually frozen for later use. The patient is then given intensive therapy, and the stem cells are reinfused via an indwelling catheter. The blood or marrow may be obtained from a patient […]

  • Amyloidosis

    A group of diseases in which protein is deposited in specific organs (localized amyloidosis) or throughout the body (systemic amyloidosis). It may be either primary (with no known cause) or secondary (caused by another disease, including some types of cancer). Generally, primary amyloidosis affects the nerves, skin, tongue, joints, heart, and liver. Secondary amyloidosis often […]

  • Anticoagulants

    Drugs that help prevent blood clots from forming. Also called blood thinners. […]

  • Artery

    Blood vessel that carries blood from the heart to various parts of the body. […]

  • Arterial

     Relating to, affecting or used in arteries. […]

  • Anesthetized

    Administered an anesthetic. […]

  • acupoints

    Points or places along the body’s meridians where needles or pressure are applied […]

  • Acute

    A sudden onset of symptoms or disease. […]

  • Aggressive

    A type of cancer that generally grows quickly. […]

  • aura

    An atmosphere said to surround a person. In alternative medicine, it is believed that everyone has a surrounding aura (energy field), visible to some people, that indicates the individual’s state of health. […]

  • Alanine aminotransferase (ALT)

    Alanine aminotransferase is an enzyme found in the liver and other tissues that is released into the bloodstream when the liver or heart is damaged or cancer is present. ALT is also called serum glutamic pyruvic transaminase (SGPT). […]

  • Achlorhydria

    An abnormal condition characterized by the absence of hydrochloric acid in the gastric juice. Hydrochloric acid helps digest food. […]

  • Ablation

    To remove-the removal of diseased or unwanted tissue from the body by surgery or other means. […]

  • Aspirate

    To withdraw fluid or air from a cavity. The process is usually aided by use of a syringe or a suction device. […]

  • Ataxic Gait

    Awkward, uncoordinated walking. […]

  • Aphagia

    A condition characterized by the loss of the ability to swallow as a result of organic or psychologic causes. […]

  • Acid phosphatase

    An enzyme found in the prostate gland. Levels in the blood were used in the past to determine the stage of prostate cancer but are no longer used routinely with the advent of PSA testing. […]

  • Alkylating Agents

    Alkalytying agents are drugs used in the treatment of cancer. They work by interfering with the c […]

  • Anticonvulsants

    Drugs that prevent or relieve convulsions or seizures. […]