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17-N-allylamino-17- demethoxy geldanamycin: A drug that belongs to a family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics, and is being studied for its ability to treat cancer.

2IT-BAD monoclonal antibody 170: A type of monoclonal antibody used in cancer detection or therapy. Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-produced substances that can locate and bind to cancer cells.

3-dimensional: A graphic display of depth, width, and height. Three-dimensional radiation therapy uses computers to create a 3-dimensional picture of the tumor. This allows doctors to give the highest possible dose of radiation to the tumor while sparing the normal tissue as much as possible.

3F8 monoclonal antibody: A type of monoclonal antibody used in cancer detection or therapy. Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-produced substances that can locate and bind to cancer cells.

4′-iodo-4′-deoxydoxorubicin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antineoplastic antibiotics.

506U78: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

6-hydroxymethylacylfulvene: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

9-cis retinoic acid: A drug being studied for cancer prevention; it belongs to the family of drugs called retinoids.

90Y-DOTA-biotin: A radioactive substance (yttrium-90) joined by a large chemical link (DOTA) to biotin, a vitamin.

A33 monoclonal antibody: A type of monoclonal antibody used in cancer detection or therapy. Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-produced substances that can locate and bind to cancer cells.

abdomen (AB-do-men): The part of the body that contains the pancreas, stomach, intestines, liver, gallbladder, and other organs.

accelerated phase (ak-SEL-er-ay-ted): 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.

acetaminophen: A drug that reduces pain.

acetylcysteine: A drug usually used to reduce the thickness of mucus and ease its removal. It is also used to reverse the toxicity of high doses of acetaminophen.

achlorhydria (a-klor-HY-dree-a): A lack of hydrochloric acid in the digestive juices in the stomach. Hydrochloric acid helps digest food.

acitretin: A drug used in cancer prevention that belongs to the family of drugs called retinoids. It is also used in the treatment of psoriasis.

acoustic (ah-KOOS-tik): Related to sound or hearing.

actinic keratosis (ak-TIN-ik ker-a-TOE-sis): A precancerous condition of thick, scaly patches of skin. Also called solar or senile keratosis.

acupressure: The application of pressure or localized massage to specific sites on the body to control symptoms such as pain or nausea. Also used to stop bleeding.

acupuncture: The technique of inserting thin needles through the skin at specific points on the body in order to control pain and other symptoms.

acustimulation: Mild electrical stimulation of acupuncture points to control symptoms such as nausea and vomiting.

acute: Having severe symptoms and a short course; not chronic.

acute leukemia: Cancer of the blood-forming tissue that progresses rapidly.

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 acute lymphocytic leukemia.

acute lymphocytic 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 acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

acute myelogenous leukemia: AML. A quickly progressing disease in which too many immature blood-forming cells are found in the blood and bone marrow. Also called acute myeloid leukemia or acute nonlymphocytic leukemia.

acute myeloid leukemia: AML. A quickly progressing disease in which too many immature blood-forming cells are found in the blood and bone marrow. Also called acute myelogenous leukemia or acute nonlymphocytic leukemia.

acute nonlymphocytic leukemia: A quickly progressing disease in which too many immature blood-forming cells are found in the blood and bone marrow. Also called acute myeloid leukemia or acute myelogenous leukemia.

acyclovir: An antiviral agent used to prevent or treat cytomegalovirus and herpes simplex infections that may occur when the body is immunosuppressed.

AD 32: An anticancer drug that belongs to a family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics. It is an anthracycline.

adenocarcinoma (AD-in-o-kar-sin-O-ma): Cancer that begins in cells that line certain internal organs.

adenoid cystic cancer: A rare type of cancer that usually begins in the salivary glands.

adenoma (ad-in-O-ma): A noncancerous tumor.

adenovirus: A Network of viruses that cause respiratory tract and eye infections. Adenoviruses used in gene therapy are altered to carry a specific tumor-fighting gene.

adjuvant therapy: Treatment given following the primary treatment to enhance the effectiveness of the primary treatment. Adjuvant therapy may be chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or hormone therapy.

adrenal glands (a-DREE-nal): A pair of small glands, one located on top of each kidney. The adrenal glands produce hormones that help control heart rate, blood pressure, the way the body uses food, and other vital functions.

adrenaline: A hormone. Also called epinephrine.

aflatoxins (AF-la-TOK-sins): Substances made by a fungus that is often found on poorly stored grains and nuts. Aflatoxins have been implicated as a factor in the etiology of primary liver cancer.

AG3340: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors. AG3340 is a matrix metalloproteinase inhibitor.

aggressive: A quickly growing cancer.

aggressive lymphoma: A quickly growing cancer that arises in the cells of the lymphatic system.

agonists: Drugs that trigger an action from a cell or another drug.

agranulocyte (A-gran-yoo-lo-SITE): A type of white blood cell; monocytes and lymphocytes are agranulocytes.

AIDS: Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, the disease caused by human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection.

aldesleukin: A colony-stimulating factor that stimulates the production of blood cells, especially platelets, during chemotherapy. It is a cytokine that belongs to the family of drugs called hematopoietic (blood forming) agents. Also called interleukin-2 or IL-2.

alendronate sodium: A drug that affects bone metabolism. It is used in treating osteoporosis and Paget’s disease, and is being studied in the treatment of hypercalcemia (abnormally high levels of calcium in the blood) and in treating and reducing the risk of bone pain caused by cancer. Alendronate sodium belongs to the family of drugs called bisphosphonates.

alkylating agents: A family of anticancer drugs that interferes with the cell’s DNA and inhibits cancer cell growth.

allogeneic bone marrow transplantation (AL-o-jen-AY-ik): A procedure in which a person receives stem cells, the cells from which all blood cell develop, from a compatible, though not genetically identical, donor.

allopurinol: A drug that lowers high uric acid (a byproduct of metabolism) levels in the blood caused by some cancer treatments or by gout.

allovectin-7: A compound used for gene therapy.

alpha-fetoprotein (AL-fa-FEE-toe-PRO-teen): A protein normally produced by a developing fetus. alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) levels are usually undetectable in the blood of healthy adults. An elevated level of AFP suggests the presence of either a primary liver cancer or germ cell tumor.

altretamine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

ALVAC-CEA vaccine: A cancer vaccine containing a canary pox virus (ALVAC) combined with the human carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) gene.

alveoli (al-VEE-o-lye): Tiny air sacs at the end of the bronchioles in the lungs.

amifostine: A drug used as a chemoprotective drug to control some of the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation therapy.

amikacin: An antibiotic drug used to treat infection.

aminocamptothecin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called topoisomerase inhibitors.

aminoglutethimide: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called nonsteroidal aromatase inhibitors. Aminoglutethimide is used to decrease estrogen production and suppress the growth of tumors that need estrogen to grow.

aminolevulinic acid: A drug used in photodynamic therapy that is absorbed by tumor cells; when exposed to light, it becomes active and kills the cancer cells.

aminopterin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

amoxicillin: An antibiotic drug used to treat infection.

amphotericin B: An antifungal drug used to treat infection.

amputation (am-pyoo-TAY-shun): Surgery to remove part or all of a limb or appendage.

amsacrine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called topoisomerase inhibitors.

amylase (AM-il-aze): An enzyme that helps the body digest starches.

amyloidosis: A Network of diseases in which protein is deposited in specific organs (localized amyloidosis) or throughout the body (systemic amyloidosis). Amyloidosis may be either primary (with no known cause) or secondary (caused by another disease, including some types of cancer). Generally, primary amyloidosis effects the nerves, skin, tongue, joints, heart, and liver; secondary amyloidosis often effects the spleen, kidneys, liver, and adrenal glands.

analgesics: Drugs that reduce pain. These drugs include aspirin, acetaminophen, and ibuprofen.

analogue: A chemical compound related in structure to another compound.

anaplastic (an-ah-PLAS-tik) : A term used to describe cancer cells that divide rapidly and bear little or no resemblance to normal cells.

anastomosis (an-AS-ta-MO-sis): A procedure to connect healthy sections of tubular structures in the body after the diseased portion has been surgically removed.

anastrozole: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called nonsteroidal aromatase inhibitors. Anastrozole is used to decrease estrogen production and suppress the growth of tumors that need estrogen to grow.

androgens (AN-dro-jens): A family of hormones that promote the development and maintenance of male sex characteristics.

androgen suppression: Treatment to suppress or block the production of male hormones. Androgen suppression is achieved by surgical removal of the testicles, by taking female sex hormones, or by taking other drugs. Also called androgen ablation.

anemia (a-NEE-mee-a): A condition in which the number of red blood cells is below normal.

anesthesia (an-es-THEE-zha): Loss of feeling or awareness. Local anesthetics cause loss of feeling in a part of the body. General anesthetics put the person to sleep.

anesthetics (an-es-THET-iks): Substances that cause loss of feeling or awareness. Local anesthetics cause loss of feeling in a part of the body. General anesthetics put the person to sleep.

anetholtrithione: A drug that may reduce the risk of development or progression of cancer.

angiogenesis (an-gee-o-GEN-eh-sis): Blood vessel formation. Tumor angiogenesis is the growth of blood vessels from surrounding tissue into a solid tumor. This is caused by the release of a chemical by the tumor cells.

angiogenesis inhibitor: A substance that may prevent the formation of blood vessels. In anticancer therapy, an angiogenesis inhibitor prevents the growth of blood vessels from surrounding tissue into a solid tumor.

angiogram (AN-jee-o-gram): An x-ray of blood vessels; the person receives an injection of dye to outline the vessels on the x-ray.

angiography (an-jee-AH-gra-fee): 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.

angiosarcoma (AN-jee-o-sar-KO-ma): A type of cancer that begins in the lining of blood vessels.

anhydrovinblastine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called mitotic inhibitors.

ansamycins: A Network of anticancer drugs that belongs to the family of drugs called antineoplastic antibiotics.

anterior mediastinotomy (MEE-dee-a-stin-AH-toe-mee): A procedure in which a tube is inserted into the chest to view the tissues and organs in the area between the lungs and between the breastbone and spine. The tube is inserted through an incision next to the breastbone. This procedure is usually used to get a tissue sample from the lymph nodes on the left side of the chest. Also called the Chamberlain procedure.

anthracenediones: A subNetwork of the family of anticancer drugs called anticancer antibiotics.

anthracyclines: A subNetwork of the family of anticancer drugs called antitumor antibiotics.

anthraquinones: A family of anticancer drugs.

antiandrogens (an-tee-AN-dro-jens): Drugs used to block the production or interfere with the action of male sex hormones.

antiandrogen therapy: Treatment with drugs used to block production or interfere with the action of male sex hormones.

antiangiogenesis: Prevention of the growth of new blood vessels into a solid tumor.

antibiotics (an-tih-by-AH-tiks): Drugs used to treat infection.

antibodies (AN-tih-BOD-ees): Proteins produced by certain white blood cells in response to foreign substances (antigens). Each antibody can bind only to a specific antigen. The purpose of this binding is to help destroy the antigen. Antibodies can work in several ways, depending on the nature of the antigen. Some antibodies disable antigens directly. Others make the antigen more vulnerable to destruction by white blood cells.

antibody therapy: Treatment with an antibody, a substance that can directly kill specific tumor cells or stimulate the immune system to kill tumor cells.

anticancer antibiotics: A Network of anticancer drugs that block cell growth by interfering with DNA, the genetic material in cells. Also called antitumor antibiotics or antineoplastic antibiotics.

anti-CEA antibody: An antibody against carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA), a protein present on certain types of cancer cells.

anticoagulants: Drugs that help prevent blood clots from forming. Also called blood thinners.

anticonvulsants (an-tee-kon-VUL-sants): Drugs that prevent, reduce or stop convulsions or seizures.

antiemetics: Drugs that prevent or reduce nausea and vomiting.

antifungals: Drugs that treat infections caused by fungi.

antigens: Substances that are recognized by the immune system and cause the immune system to create antibodies.

antimetabolites: A Network of anticancer drugs that resemble nutrients that a cell needs to grow. Once inside the cell, they interfere with the dividing process and prevent cell growth.

antineoplastic antibiotics: A Network of anticancer drugs that block cell growth by interfering with DNA, the genetic material in cells. Also called anticancer antibiotics or antitumor antibiotics.

antineoplastons: Substances isolated from normal human blood and urine being tested as a type of treatment for some tumors and AIDS.

antiparasitics: Drugs used to treat bacterial and parasitic infections and some cancers.

antisense c-fos: Synthetic genetic material that may slow or stop the growth of cancer cells.

antithymocyte globulin (an-tee-THIGH-mo-site GLOB-yoo-lin): A protein used to reduce the risk of or to treat graft-versus-host disease.

antivirals: Drugs used to treat infections caused by viruses.

anus (AY-nus): The opening of the rectum to the outside of the body.

aplastic anemia: A condition in which the bone marrow is unable to produce blood cells.

aplidine: An anticancer drug obtained from a marine animal.

apoptosis (ap-o-TOE-sis): A normal series of events in a cell which lead to its death.

areola (a-REE-o-la): The area of dark-colored skin on the breast that surrounds the nipple.

arsenic trioxide: An anticancer drug that induces programmed cell death (apoptosis) in certain cancer cells.

arterial embolization (ar-TEE-ree-al EM-bo-lih-ZAY-shun): The blocking of an artery by a clot of foreign material. This can be done as treatment to block the flow of blood to a tumor.

arteriogram (ar-TEER-ee-o-gram): An x-ray of arteries; the person receives an injection of a dye that outlines the vessels on an x-ray.

arteriography (ar-TEE-ree-AH-gra-fee): A procedure to x-ray arteries. The arteries can be seen because of an injection of a dye that outlines the vessels on an x-ray.

asbestos (as-BES-tus): A natural material that is made up of tiny fibers. The fibers can cause cancer.

ascites (ah-SYE-teez): Abnormal buildup of fluid in the abdomen.

asparaginase: An anticancer drug that is an enzyme.

aspergillosis: An infectious fungal disease that occurs most often in the skin, ears, nasal sinuses, and lungs of persons with a suppressed immune system.

aspirate (AS-pi-rit): Fluid withdrawn from a lump, often a cyst.

aspiration (as-per-AY-shun): Removal of fluid from a lump, often a cyst, with a needle and a syringe.

aspirin: A drug that reduces pain. Aspirin belongs to the family of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents. It is also being studied in cancer prevention.

astrocytomas (as-tro-sye-TOE-mas): Tumors that begin in the brain or spinal cord in small, star-shaped cells called astrocytes.

asymptomatic: Having no signs or symptoms of disease.

ataxic gait (ah-TAK-sik): Awkward, uncoordinated walking.

atypical hyperplasia (hy-per-PLAY-zha): A benign (noncancerous) condition in which cells have abnormal features and are increased in number.

autoimmune disease: A condition in which the body recognizes its own tissues as foreign and directs an immune response against them.

autologous bone marrow transplantation (aw-TAHL-o-gus): A procedure in which bone marrow is removed from a person, stored, and then given back to the person following intensive treatment.

autologous lymphocytes: A person’s white blood cells. Lymphocytes have a number of roles in the immune system, including the production of antibodies and other substances that fight infection and disease.

autologous tumor cells: Cancer cells from the person’s tumor.

axilla (ak-SIL-a): The underarm or armpit.

axillary (AK-sil-air-ee): Pertaining to the armpit.

axillary dissection (AK-sil-air-ee): Surgery to remove lymph nodes found in the armpit region.

axillary lymph node dissection: Surgery to remove lymph nodes found in the armpit region.

axillary lymph nodes: Lymph nodes found in the armpit that drain the lymph channels from the breast.

azacitidine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

B3 antigen: A protein found on some tumor cells.

B43-BAP immunotoxin: A toxic substance linked to an antibody that attaches to tumor cells and kills them.

bacterial toxin: A toxic substance, made by bacteria, that can be modified to kill specific tumor cells without harming normal cells.

barium enema: A series of x-rays of the lower intestine. The x-ray pictures are taken after the person is given an enema with a white, chalky solution that contains barium. The barium outlines the intestines on the x-rays.

barium solution: A liquid containing barium sulfate that is used in x-rays to highlight parts of the digestive system.

barium swallow (eh-SOF-a-gram): A series of x-rays of the esophagus. The x-ray pictures are taken after the person drinks a solution that contains barium. The barium coats and outlines the esophagus on the x-ray. Also called an esophagram.

Barrett’s esophagus: A condition in which the cells lining the lower part of the esophagus have changed or been replaced with abnormal cells that could lead to cancer of the esophagus. The backing up of stomach contents (reflux) may irritate the esophagus and over time cause Barrett’s esophagus.

basal cell carcinoma (BAY-sal sel kar-sin-O-ma): A type of skin cancer that arises from the basal cells, small round cells found in the lower part, or base, of the epidermis, the outer layer of the skin.

basal cells (BAY-sal): Small, round cells found in the lower part, or base, of the epidermis, the outer layer of the skin.

basophil: A type of white blood cell. Basophils are granulocytes.

batimastat: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors. Batimastat is a matrix metalloproteinase inhibitor.

BAY 12-9566: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors.

B cells: White blood cells that develop from bone marrow and produce antibodies. Also called B lymphocytes.

BCG vaccine: An anticancer drug (bacille calmette-Guerin) that activates the immune system. Filling the bladder with a solution of BCG is a form of biological therapy for superficial bladder cancer.

BCL-2 antisense/G3139: A drug that may kill cancer cells by blocking the production of a protein that makes cancer cells live longer.

benign (beh-NINE): Not cancerous; does not invade nearby tissue or spread to other parts of the body.

benign prostatic hyperplasia (hye-per-PLAY-zha): A benign (noncancerous) condition in which an overgrowth of prostate tissue pushes against the urethra and the bladder, blocking the flow of urine. Also called benign prostatic hypertrophy or BPH.

benign tumor (beh-NINE): A noncancerous growth that does not invade nearby tissue or spread to other parts of the body.

beta carotene: A vitamin A precursor. Beta carotene belongs to the family of fat soluble vitamins called carotenoids.

bexarotene: An anticancer drug used to decrease the growth of some types of cancer cells. Also called LGD1069.

Biafine cream: A topical preparation to reduce the risk of and treat skin reactions to radiation therapy.

bicalutamide: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antiandrogens.

bilateral: Affecting both the right and left side of body.

bilateral cancer: Cancer that occurs in both paired organs, such as both breasts or both ovaries.

bile: A fluid made by the liver and stored in the gallbladder. Bile is excreted into the small intestine where it helps digest fat.

bile duct: A tube through which bile passes in and out of the liver.

biological response modifiers (by-o-LAHJ-i-kul): BRMs. Substances that stimulate the body’s response to infection and disease.

biological therapy (by-o-LAHJ-i-kul): Treatment to stimulate or restore the ability of the immune system to fight infection and disease. Also used to lessen side effects that may be caused by some cancer treatments. Also called immunotherapy or biological response modifier (BRM) therapy.

biomarkers: Substances sometimes found in an increased amount in the blood, other body fluids, or tissues and that may suggest the presence of some types of cancer. Biomarkers include CA 125 (ovarian cancer), CA 15-3 (breast cancer), CEA (ovarian, lung, breast, pancreas, and GI tract cancers), and PSA (prostate cancer). Also called tumor markers.

biopsy (BY-ahp-see): The removal of cells or tissues for examination under a microscope. When only a sample of tissue is removed, the procedure is called an incisional biopsy or core biopsy. When the whole tumor is removed, the procedure is called an excisional biopsy. When a sample of tissue or fluid is removed with a needle, the procedure is called a needle biopsy or fine-needle aspiration.

biopsy specimen: Tissue removed from the body and examined under a microscope to determine if disease is present.

bispecific antibodies: Antibodies developed in the laboratory to recognize more than one protein on the surface of different cells. Examples include bispecific antibodies 2B1, 520C9xH22, mDX-H210, and MDX447.

bizelesin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents. It is also an antitumor antibiotic.

BL22 immunotoxin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called bacterial immunotoxins. BL22 is a bacterial toxic substance linked to an antibody that attaches to tumor cells and kills them.

bladder: The organ that stores urine.

blast crisis: The phase of chronic myelogenous leukemia in which the number of immature, abnormal white blood cells in the bone marrow and blood is extremely high. Also called blast phase.

blast phase: The phase of chronic myelogenous leukemia in which the number of immature, abnormal white blood cells in the bone marrow and blood is extremely high. Also called blast crisis.

blasts: Immature blood cells.

bleomycin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics.

blood-brain barrier: A network of blood vessels with closely spaced cells that makes it difficult for potentially toxic substances (such as anticancer drugs) to penetrate the blood vessel walls and enter the brain.

blood transfusion: The administration of blood or blood products into a blood vessel.

BMS-182751: A platinum compound used in chemotherapy.

BMS-184476: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called mitotic inhibitors.

bolus: A single dose of drug usually injected into a blood vessel over a short period of time.

bolus infusion: A single dose of drug usually injected into a blood vessel over a short period of time.

bone marrow: The soft, sponge-like tissue in the center of large bones that produces white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets.

bone marrow ablation: The destruction of bone marrow using radiation or drugs.

bone marrow aspiration (as-per-AY-shun): The removal of a small sample of bone marrow (usually from the hip) through a needle for examination under a microscope.

bone marrow biopsy (BY-ahp-see): The removal of a sample of tissue from the bone marrow with a needle for examination under a microscope.

bone marrow metastases: Cancer that has spread from the original (primary) tumor to the bone marrow.

bone marrow transplantation (trans-plan-TAY-shun): A procedure to replace bone marrow destroyed by treatment with high doses of anticancer drugs or radiation. Transplantation may be autologous (the person’s marrow saved before treatment), allogeneic (marrow donated by someone else), or syngeneic (marrow donated by an identical twin).

bone metastases: Cancer that has spread from the original (primary) tumor to the bone.

bone scan: A technique to create images of bones on a computer screen or on film. A small amount of radioactive material is injected into a blood vessel and travels through the bloodstream. It collects in the bones and is detected by a scanner.

boron neutron capture therapy: A type of radiation therapy. The person is given an intravenous infusion containing the element boron, which concentrates in the tumor cells. The person then receives radiation therapy with atomic particles called neutrons from a small research nuclear reactor. The radiation is absorbed by the boron, killing the tumor cells without harming normal cells.

bowel: The long tube-shaped organ in the abdomen that completes the process of digestion. There is both a small and large bowel. Also called the intestine.

brachytherapy (BRAK-ih-THER-a-pee): Radioactive material sealed in needles, seeds, wires, or catheters, is placed directly into or near the tumor. Also called internal radiation therapy or implant radiation.

brain metastases: Cancer that has spread from the original (primary) tumor to the brain.

brain stem: The part of the brain that is connected to the spinal cord.

brain stem glioma (glee-O-ma): A tumor located in the part of the brain that connects to the spinal cord (the brain stem). It may grow rapidly or slowly, depending on the grade of the tumor.

brain stem tumor: A tumor in the part of the brain that connects to the spinal cord (the brain stem).

BRCA1: A gene located on chromosome 17 that normally helps to suppress cell growth. Inheriting an altered version of BRCA1 predisposes an individual to breast, ovarian, or prostate cancer.

breast-conserving surgery: An operation to remove the breast cancer but not the breast itself. Types of breast-conserving surgery include lumpectomy (removal of the lump), quadrantectomy (removal of one quarter of the breast), and segmental mastectomy (removal of the cancer as well as some of the breast tissue around the tumor and the lining over the chest muscles below the tumor).

breast reconstruction: Surgery to rebuild a breast’s shape after a mastectomy.

Brief Pain Inventory: A questionnaire used to measure pain.

bronchi (BRONK-eye): The large air passages that lead from the trachea (windpipe) to the lungs.

bronchioles (BRON-kee-olz): The tiny branches of air tubes in the lungs.

bronchitis (bron-KYE-tis): Inflammation (swelling and reddening) of the bronchi.

bronchoscope (BRON-ko-skope): A thin, lighted tube used to examine the inside of the trachea and bronchi, the air passages that lead into the lungs.

bronchoscopy (bron-KOS-ko-pee): A procedure in which a thin, lighted tube is inserted through the nose or mouth. This allows examination of the inside of the trachea and bronchi, air passages that lead to the lung, as well as the lung. Bronchoscopy may be used to detect cancer or to perform some treatment procedures.

bronchus: A large air passage that leads from the trachea (windpipe) to the lung.

broxuridine: A drug that makes cancer cells more sensitive to radiation and is also used as a diagnostic agent to determine how fast cancer cells grow.

bryostatin-1: A drug used for its antitumor activity.

buccal mucosa (BUK-ul myoo-KO-sa): The inner lining of the cheeks and lips.

Burkitt’s lymphoma: A type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma that most often occurs in young people between the ages of 12 and 30. The disease usually causes a rapidly growing tumor in the abdomen.

buserelin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called gonadotropin releasing hormones. In prostate cancer therapy, buserelin blocks the production of testosterone in the testicles.

busulfan: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

buthionine sulfoximine: A drug that may help prevent resistance to some anticancer drugs.

bypass: A surgical procedure in which the doctor creates a new pathway for the flow of body fluids.

C225 monoclonal antibody: A type of monoclonal antibody used in cancer detection or therapy. Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-produced substances that can locate and bind to cancer cells.

CA-125: Substance sometimes found in an increased amount in the blood, other body fluids, or tissues and that may suggest the presence of some types of cancer.

calcitonin: A hormone secreted by the thyroid that lowers blood calcium levels.

calcitriol: A drug made in the lab that is chemically similar to vitamin D.

calcium (KAL-see-um): A mineral found in teeth, bones, and other body tissues.

calcium carbonate: A mineral taken primarily as a supplement to prevent osteoporosis. It is also being studied for cancer prevention.

camptothecin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called topoisomerase inhibitors.

camptothecin analogue: An anticancer drug related in structure to camptothecin, a topoisomerase inhibitor. One such drug is aminocamptothecin.

cancer: A term for diseases in which abnormal cells divide without control. Cancer cells can invade nearby tissues and can spread through the bloodstream and lymphatic system to other parts of the body.

cancer of unknown primary origin: Cancer cells are found in the body, but the place where the cells first started growing (the origin or primary site) cannot be found.

capecitabine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

capsaicin: A component of certain plants, including cayenne and red pepper, used topically for peripheral nerve pain. Also being studied for controlling mucositis pain following chemotherapy and radiation therapy.

carbendazim: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antifungal agents.

carbogen: An inhalant of oxygen and carbon dioxide that increases the sensitivity of tumor cells to the effects of radiation therapy.

carboplatin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called platinum compounds.

carboxyamidotriazole: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors.

carboxypeptidase-G2: A bacterial enzyme that belongs to the family of drugs called chemoprotective agents. It is used to neutralize the toxic effects of methotrexate.

carcinoembryonic antigen peptide-1: CAP-1. A protein that can stimulate an immune response to certain tumors.

carcinogen (kar-SIN-o-jin): Any substance that causes cancer.

carcinogenesis: The process by which normal cells are transformed into cancer cells.

carcinoma (kar-sin-O-ma): Cancer that begins in the skin or in tissues that line or cover internal organs.

carcinoma in situ (kar-sin-O-ma in SYE-too): Cancer that involves only the cells in which it began and has not spread to neighboring tissues.

cardiac: Pertaining to the heart.

cardiopulmonary: Pertaining to the heart and lungs.

carmustine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

carotenoids: Substance found in yellow/orange fruits and vegetables and dark green leafy vegetables that may reduce the risk of developing cancer.

cartilage (KAR-tih-lij): Firm, rubbery tissue that cushions bones at joints. A more flexible kind of cartilage connects muscles with bones and makes up other parts of the body, such as the larynx and the ears.

carzelesin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

Castleman’s disease: A rare disorder in which noncancerous growths develop in lymph node tissue.

castration: Removal or destruction of the testicles or ovaries using radiation, surgery, or drugs. Medical castration refers to the use of drugs to suppress the function of the ovaries or testicles.

catheter (KATH-et-er): A flexible tube used to deliver fluids into or withdraw fluids from the body.

cauterization (KAW-ter-ih-ZAY-shun): The destruction of tissue with a hot instrument, an electrical current, or a caustic substance.

CC-49 monoclonal antibody: A type of monoclonal antibody used in cancer detection or therapy. Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-produced substances that can locate and bind to cancer cells.

CCI-779: An anticancer drug that inhibits the growth of cancer cells by preventing cell division.

CD34 antigen: A protein found on the surface of some bone marrow and blood cells.

CEA: Carcinoembryonic antigen. A substance that is sometimes found in an increased amount in the blood of people with certain cancers.

CEA assay: A laboratory test to measure carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA), a substance that is sometimes found in an increased amount in the blood of people who have certain cancers.

ceftriaxone: An antibiotic drug used to treat infection.

celecoxib: A drug that reduces pain. Celecoxib belongs to the family of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents. It is also being studied for cancer prevention.

cell: The basic unit of any living organism.

cell differentiation: The process during which young, immature (unspecialized) cells take on individual characteristics and reach their mature (specialized) form and function.

cell motility: The ability of a cell to move.

cell proliferation: An increase in the number of cells as a result of cell growth and cell division.

cellular adhesion: The close adherence (bonding) to adjoining cell surfaces.

central nervous system: CNS. The brain and spinal cord.

central venous access catheter: A tube surgically placed into a blood vessel for the purpose of giving intravenous fluid and drugs. It also can be used to obtain blood samples. This device avoids the need for separate needle insertions for each infusion.

CEP-2563 dihydrochloride: A growth factor antagonist that may stop tumor cells from growing.

cephalexin: An antibiotic drug that belongs to the family of drugs called cephalosporins.

cephalosporins: A family of antibiotic drugs that is used to treat a wide variety of bacterial infections.

c-erbB-2: The gene that controls cell growth by making the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2. Also called HER2/neu.

cerebellum (sair-uh-BELL-um): The portion of the brain in the back of the head between the cerebrum and the brain stem. The cerebellum controls balance for walking and standing, and other complex motor functions.

cerebral hemispheres (seh-REE-bral HEM-iss-feerz): The two halves of the cerebrum, the part of the brain that controls muscle functions of the body and also controls speech, emotions, reading, writing, and learning. The right hemisphere controls muscle movement on the left side of the body, and the left hemisphere controls muscle movement on the right side of the body.

cerebrospinal fluid (seh-REE-bro-SPY-nal): CSF. The fluid flowing around the brain and spinal cord. Cerebrospinal fluid is produced in the ventricles in the brain.

cerebrum (seh-REE-brum): The largest part of the brain. It is divided into two hemispheres, or halves, called the cerebral hemispheres. The cerebrum controls muscle functions of the body and also controls speech, emotions, reading, writing, and learning.

cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (SER-vih-kul in-tra-eh-pih-THEEL-ee-ul NEE-o-play-zha): CIN. A general term for the growth of abnormal cells on the surface of the cervix. Numbers from 1 to 3 may be used to describe how much of the cervix contains abnormal cells.

cervix (SER-viks): The lower, narrow end of the uterus that forms a canal between the uterus and vagina.

CGP 48664: An anticancer drug that may inhibit the growth of some tumors.

chemoembolization: A procedure in which the blood supply to the tumor is blocked surgically or mechanically, and anticancer drugs are administered directly into the tumor. This permits a higher concentration of drug to be in contact with the tumor for a longer period of time.

chemoprevention (KEE-mo-pre-VEN-shun): The use of drugs, vitamins, or other agents to try to reduce the risk of or delay the development or recurrence of cancer.

chemoprotective: A quality of some drugs used in cancer treatment. Chemoprotective agents protect healthy tissue from the toxic effects of anticancer drugs.

chemosensitivity assay: A laboratory test to analyze the responsiveness of a tumor to a specific drug.

chemosensitizer: A drug that makes tumor cells more sensitive to the effects of chemotherapy.

chemotherapy (kee-mo-THER-a-pee): Treatment with anticancer drugs.

chlorambucil: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

cholangiosarcoma (ko-LAN-jee-o-sar-KO-ma): A tumor of the connective tissues of the bile ducts.

chondrosarcoma (KAHN-dro-sar-KO-ma): A type of cancer that forms in cartilage.

chordoma (kor-DO-ma): A type of bone cancer that usually starts in the lower spinal column.

choriocarcinomar: A rare cancer in women of child-bearing age in which cancer cells grow in the tissues that are formed in the uterus following conception. Also called gestational trophoblastic disease, gestational trophoblastic neoplasia, gestational trophoblastic tumor, or molar pregnancy.

choroid plexus tumor: A rare type of cancer that occurs in the ventricles of the brain. It usually occurs in children younger than 2 years old.

chromosome (KRO-mo-some): Part of a cell that contains genetic information. Except for sperm and eggs, all human cells contain 46 chromosomes.

chronic: A disease or condition that persists or progresses over a long period of time.

chronic granulocytic leukemia: A slowly progressing disease in which too many white blood cells are made in the bone marrow. Also called chronic myelogenous leukemia or chronic myeloid leukemia.

chronic leukemia (KRAHN-ik): Cancer of the blood-forming tissues that progresses slowly.

chronic lymphoblastic lymphoma: A slowly progressing disease in which too many immature white blood cells called lymphoblasts are found in the body.

chronic lymphocytic leukemia: A slowly progressing disease in which too many white blood cells called lymphocytes are found in the body.

chronic myelogenous leukemia: CML. A slowly progressing disease in which too many white blood cells are made in the bone marrow. Also called chronic myeloid leukemia or chronic granulocytic leukemia.

chronic myeloid leukemia: CML. A slowly progressing disease in which too many white blood cells are made in the bone marrow. Also called chronic myelogenous leukemia or chronic granulocytic leukemia.

chronic phase (KRAHN-ik): Refers to the early stages of chronic myelogenous leukemia or chronic lymphocytic leukemia. The number of mature and immature, abnormal white blood cells in the bone marrow and blood is higher than normal, but lower than in the accelerated or blast phase.

chronic phase chronic myelogenous leukemia: A phase of chronic myelogenous leukemia that may last from several months to several years. Although there may be no symptoms of leukemia, there are too many white blood cells.

cidofovir: A drug used to treat infection caused by viruses.

cimetidine: A drug usually used to treat stomach ulcers. It is also commonly used in a regimen to prevent allergic reactions.

ciprofloxacin: An anti-infective drug that is also being studied in bladder cancer chemotherapy.

cirrhosis: A type of liver disease.

cisplatin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called platinum compounds.

cladribine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

clarithromycin: An antibiotic drug used to treat infection. It belongs to the family of drugs called macrolides.

clinical trial: A research study that evaluates the effectiveness of new interventions in people. Each study is designed to evaluate new methods of screening, prevention, diagnosis, or treatment of cancer.

clodronate: A drug used as treatment for hypercalcemia (abnormally high levels of calcium in the blood) and for cancer that has spread to the bone (bone metastases). It may decrease pain, the risk of fractures, and the development of new bone metastases.

CMA-676: An anticancer drug used in the treatment of acute myelogenous leukemia.

CNS: Central nervous system. The brain and spinal cord.

CNS metastases: Cancer that has spread from the original (primary) tumor to the central nervous system.

CNS prophylaxis (pro-fih-LAK-sis): Chemotherapy or radiation therapy given to the central nervous system (CNS) as a preventive treatment. It is given to kill cancer cells that may be in the brain and spinal cord, even though no cancer has been detected there.

CNS tumors: Tumors of the central nervous system, including brain stem glioma, craniopharyngioma, medulloblastoma, and meningioma.

coactivated T cells: T cells that have been coated with monoclonal antibodies to enhance their ability to kill tumor cells.

COL-3: An anticancer drug that may stop tumor growth by preventing the growth of new blood vessels into a solid tumor.

colectomy (ko-LEK-toe-mee): An operation to remove all or part of the colon. An open colectomy is the removal of the colon through a surgical incision made in the wall of the abdomen. Laparoscopic-assisted colectomy uses a thin, lighted tube attached to a video camera. It allows the surgeon to remove the colon without a large incision.

colon (KO-lun): The long, coiled, tubelike organ that removes water from digested food. The remaining material, solid waste called stool, moves through the colon to the rectum and leaves the body through the anus.

colonoscope (ko-LAHN-o-skope): A thin, lighted tube used to examine the inside of the colon.

colonoscopy (ko-lun-AHS-ko-pee): An examination of the inside of the colon using a thin, lighted tube (called a colonoscope) inserted into the rectum. If abnormal areas are seen, tissue can be removed and examined under a microscope to determine if disease is present.

colony-stimulating factors: Substances that stimulate the production of blood cells. Colony-stimulating factors include granulocyte colony-stimulating factors (also called G-CSF and filgrastim), granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factors (also called GM-CSF and sargramostim), and promegapoietin.

colorectal (ko-lo-REK-tul): Related to the colon and rectum.

colostomy (ko-LAHS-toe-mee): An opening into the colon from the outside of the body. A colostomy provides a new path for waste material to leave the body after part of the colon has been removed.

colposcope: A lighted magnifying instrument used for examination of the vagina and cervix.

colposcopy (kul-PAHS-ko-pee): Examination of the vagina and cervix using a lighted magnifying instrument called a colposcope.

combination chemotherapy: Treatment using more than one anticancer drug.

combretastatin A4 phosphate: An anticancer drug that reduces the blood supply to tumors; it is a tubulin binding agent.

common bile duct: Carries bile from the liver and gallbladder into the duodenum (the upper part of the small intestine).

complete remission: The disappearance of all signs of cancer. Also called complete response.

complete response: The disappearance of all signs of cancer. Also called complete remission.

compression bandage: A bandage designed to provide pressure to a particular area.

computed tomography (tuh-MAH-gra-fee): A series of detailed pictures of areas inside the body; the pictures are created by a computer linked to an x-ray machine. Also called computed tomography (CT) scan or computed axial tomography (CAT) scan.

condylomata acuminata (kahn-dih-LO-ma-ta a-kyoo-mih-NA-ta): Genital warts caused by certain human papillomaviruses.

cone biopsy: Surgery to remove a cone-shaped piece of tissue from the cervix and cervical canal. Cone biopsy may be used to diagnose or treat a cervical condition. Also called conization.

congestive heart failure: Weakness of the heart muscle that leads to a buildup of fluid in body tissues.

conization (ko-nih-ZAY-shun): Surgery to remove a cone-shaped piece of tissue from the cervix and cervical canal. Conization may be used to diagnose or treat a cervical condition. Also called cone biopsy.

consolidation therapy: Chemotherapy treatments given after induction chemotherapy to further reduce the number of cancer cells.

continent reservoir (KAHN-tih-nent RES-er-vwar): A pouch formed from a piece of small intestine to hold urine after the bladder has been removed.

continuous hyperthermic peritoneal perfusion: CHPP. A procedure that bathes the abdominal cavity in fluid that contains anticancer drugs. This fluid is warmer than body temperature. This procedure appears to kill cancer cells without harming normal cells.

continuous infusion: The administration of a fluid into a blood vessel, usually over a prolonged period of time.

cooperative Network: A Network of physicians and/or hospitals formed to treat a large number of persons in the same way so that new treatment can be evaluated quickly. Clinical trials of new cancer treatments often require many more people than a single physician or hospital can care for.

cordycepin: An anticancer drug that belongs to a family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics.

core biopsy: The removal of a tissue sample with a needle for examination under a microscope.

corpus: The body of the uterus.

corticosteroids: Hormones that have antitumor activity in lymphomas and lymphoid leukemias; in addition, corticosteroids (steroids) may be used for hormone replacement and for the management of some of the complications of cancer and its treatment.

Corynebacterium granulosum: A bacterium that may stimulate the immune system to fight cancer.

co-trimoxazole: A combination of two anti-infection drugs, sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim. It is used to fight bacterial and protozoal infections.

craniopharyngioma (KRAY-nee-o-fah-rin-jee-O-ma): A benign brain tumor that may be considered malignant because it can damage the hypothalamus, the area of the brain that controls body temperature, hunger, and thirst.

craniotomy (kray-nee-AH-toe-mee): An operation in which an opening is made in the skull.

crisnatol mesylate: An anticancer drug that interferes with the DNA in cancer cells.

Crohn’s disease: Chronic inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract, most commonly the bowel. Crohn’s disease increases risk for colon cancer.

cryosurgery (KRYE-o-SIR-jer-ee): Treatment performed with an instrument that freezes and destroys abnormal tissues. This procedure is a form of cryotherapy.

cryotherapy: Any method that uses cold temperature to treat disease.

cryptorchidism (kript-OR-kid-izm): A condition in which one or both testicles fail to move from the abdomen, where they develop before birth, into the scrotum. Cryptorchidism may increase the risk for development of testicular cancer. Also called undescended testicles.

CSF: Cerebrospinal fluid. The fluid flowing around the brain and spinal cord. CSF is produced in the ventricles of the brain.

CT scan: Computed tomography scan. A series of detailed pictures of areas inside the body; the pictures are created by a computer linked to an x-ray machine. Also called computed axial tomography (CAT) scan.

curettage (kyoo-reh-TAHZH): Removal of tissue with a curette, a spoon-shaped instrument with a sharp edge.

curette (kyoo-RET): A spoon-shaped instrument with a sharp edge.

cutaneous (kyoo-TAY-nee-us): Related to the skin.

cutaneous T-cell lymphoma: A disease in which certain cells of the lymph system (called T lymphocytes) become cancerous (malignant) and affect the skin.

cyclophosphamide: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

cyclosporine: A drug used to help reduce the risk of rejection of organ and bone marrow transplants by the body. It is also used in clinical trials to make cancer cells more sensitive to anticancer drugs.

cyproterone acetate: A drug used to block the production of or interfere with the action of male sex hormones.

cyst (sist): A sac or capsule filled with fluid.

cystectomy (sis-TEK-toe-mee): Surgery to remove the bladder.

cystoscope (SIS-toe-skope): A thin, lighted instrument used to look inside the bladder and remove tissue samples or small tumors.

cystoscopy (sist-AHS-ko-pee): Examination of the bladder using a thin, lighted instrument (called a cystoscope) inserted into the urethra. Tissue samples can be removed and examined under a microscope to determine if disease is present.

cytarabine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

cytokines: Diverse and potent chemical messengers secreted by the cells of the immune system. Cytokines are also produced by recombinant DNA technology and given to people to modulate immune response.

cytomegalovirus: A virus that may be carried in an inactive state for life by healthy individuals. It is a cause of severe pneumonia in people with a suppressed immune system, such as those undergoing bone marrow transplantation or people with leukemia or lymphoma.

cytopenia: A reduction in the number of blood cells.

cytotoxic chemotherapy: Anticancer drugs that kill cells, especially cancer cells.

cytotoxic T cells: A type of white blood cell that can directly destroy specific cells. T cells can be separated from other blood cells and grown in the laboratory and then be given to the person to destroy tumor cells. Certain cytokines can also be given to people to assist in the formation of cytotoxic T cells within the person’s body.

D-20761: A synthetic luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LH-RH) antagonist that suppresses LH and sex steroid levels.

dacarbazine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

dactinomycin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics.

dalteparin: A drug that helps prevent the formation of blood clots; it belongs to the family of drugs called anticoagulants.

danazol: A synthetic hormone that belongs to the family of drugs called androgens and is used to treat endometriosis. It is being evaluated in the treatment of endometrial cancer.

daunorubicin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics.

decapeptyl: Belongs to the family of drugs called luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone agonists. Used to block hormone production in ovarian ablation.

decitabine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

deferoxamine: An iron chelating agent that removes iron from tumors by inhibiting DNA synthesis and causing cancer cell death. It is used in conjunction with other anticancer agents in pediatric neuroblastoma therapy.

defibrotide: A drug under study for the prevention of veno-occlusive disease, a rare complication of high-dose chemotherapy and stem cell transplantation in which small veins in the liver become blocked.

deoxycytidine: A drug that protects healthy tissues from the toxic effects of anticancer drugs.

DepoFoam-encapsulated cytarabine: The anticancer drug cytarabine formulated inside small particles of a synthetic lipid material called DepoFoam. This dosage form slowly releases the drug and provides a sustained action.

depsipeptide: Anticancer drugs obtained from microorganisms.

dermatitis: Inflammation of the skin.

dermatologist (der-ma-TAH-lo-jist): A doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of skin problems.

dermis (DER-mis): The lower or inner layer of the two main layers of tissue that make up the skin.

desferrioxamine: A drug that inhibits tumor cell growth by preventing the nutrient iron from being metabolized.

desmoid tumor: A tumor of the tissue that surrounds muscles, usually in the abdomen. Desmoid tumors rarely metastasize.

dexamethasone: A synthetic corticosteroid; it is used in the treatment of leukemia and lymphoma and may be used for the management of some of the complications of other cancers and their treatment.

dexrazoxane: A drug used to protect the heart from the toxic effects of anthracycline drugs such as doxorubicin. It belongs to the family of drugs called chemoprotective agents.

dextromethorphan acetic acid:An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors.

diabetes (dye-a-BEE-teez): A disease in which the body does not properly control the amount of sugar in the blood. As a result, the level of sugar in the blood is too high. This disease occurs when the body does not produce enough insulin or does not use it properly.

diagnosis: The process of identifying a disease by the signs and symptoms.

diagnostic procedure: A method used to identify a disease.

diagnostic trial: A research study that evaluates methods of detecting disease.

dialysis (dye-AL-ih-sis): The process of cleansing the blood when the kidneys are not able to filter the blood.

diaphragm (DYE-a-fram): The thin muscle below the lungs and heart that separates the chest from the abdomen.

diathermy (DYE-a-ther-mee): The use of heat to destroy abnormal cells. Also called cauterization or electrodiathermy.

diaziquone: AZQ. An anticancer drug that is able to cross the blood-brain barrier and kill cancer cells in the central nervous system.

didanosine: A drug used to treat infection caused by viruses.

di-dgA-RFB4 monoclonal antibody: An anticancer drug that is a combination of a monoclonal antibody (RFB4) and an immunotoxin (dgA).

diethylstilbestrol (dye-ETH-ul-stil-BES-trol): DES. A synthetic hormone that was prescribed from the early 1940s until 1971 to help women with complications of pregnancy. DES has been linked to an increased risk of clear cell carcinoma in daughters of women who had used DES. DES may also increase the risk of breast cancer in women who used DES.

differentiation: In cancer, refers to how mature (developed) the cancer cells are in a tumor. Differentiated tumor cells resemble normal cells and grow at a slower rate than undifferentiated tumor cells, which lack the structure and function of normal cells and grow uncontrollably.

difluoromethylornithine: DFMO. An anticancer drug that has been shown to reduce the risk of cancer in animals.

digestive system (dye-JES-tiv): The organs that take in food and turn it into products that the body can use to stay healthy. Waste products the body cannot use leave the body through bowel movements. The digestive system includes the salivary glands, mouth, esophagus, stomach, liver, pancreas, gallbladder, intestines, and rectum.

digestive tract (dye-JES-tiv): The organs through which food passes when food is eaten. These organs are the mouth, esophagus, stomach, small and large intestines, and rectum.

digital rectal examination: DRE. An examination in which a doctor inserts a lubricated, gloved finger into the rectum to feel for abnormalities.

dihematoporphyrin ether: A drug used in photodynamic therapy that is absorbed by tumor cells; when exposed to light, it becomes active and kills the cancer cells.

dilation and curettage (dye-LAY-shun and kyoo-reh-TAHZH): D&C. A minor operation in which the cervix is expanded enough (dilation) to permit the cervical canal and uterine lining to be scraped with a spoon-shaped instrument called a curette (curettage).

dilator (DYE-lay-tor): A device used to stretch or enlarge an opening.

dimesna: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called chemoprotective agents.

dimethylxanthenone acetic acid: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors.

dipyridamole: A drug that prevents blood cell clumping and enhances the effectiveness of fluorouracil and other chemotherapeutic agents.

disease progression: Cancer that continues to grow or spread.

distant cancer: Refers to cancer that has spread from the original (primary) tumor to distant organs or distant lymph nodes.

disulfiram: A drug that slows the metabolism of retinoids, allowing them to act over a longer period of time.

diuretic: A drug that increases the production of urine.

DNA: Deoxyribonucleic acid. A molecule that carries genetic information.

docetaxel: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called mitotic inhibitors.

dolastatin 10: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called mitotic inhibitors.

dose-rate: The strength of a treatment given over a period of time.

double-blinded: A doubled-blinded trial is a clinical trial in which neither the medical staff nor the person knows which of several possible therapies the person is receiving.

douche (DOOSH): A procedure in which water or a medicated solution is used to clean the vagina and cervix.

Down syndrome: A disorder caused by the presence of an extra chromosome 21 and characterized by mental retardation and distinguishing physical features.

doxorubicin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics. It is an anthracycline.

doxycycline: An antibiotic drug used to treat infection.

DPPE: Belongs to a Network of antihormone drugs.

dronabinol: A synthetic pill form of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), an active ingredient in marijuana that is used to treat nausea and vomiting associated with cancer chemotherapy.

dry orgasm: Sexual climax without the release of semen.

DTGM fusion protein: An anticancer drug formed by the combination of diphtheria toxin and a colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF). The colony stimulating factor is attracted to cancer cells and the diphtheria toxin kills the cells.

duct (dukt): A tube through which body fluids pass.

ductal carcinoma in situ (DUK-tal kar-sin-O-ma in SYE-too): DCIS. Abnormal cells that involve only the lining of a duct. The cells have not spread outside the duct to other tissues in the breast. Also called intraductal carcinoma.

dumping syndrome: A Network of symptoms that occur when food or liquid enters the small intestine too rapidly. These symptoms include cramps, nausea, diarrhea, and dizziness. Dumping syndrome sometimes occurs in people who have had a portion of their stomach removed.

duodenum (doo-o-DEE-num): The first part of the small intestine.

DX-52-1: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics. It is an anthracycline.

DX-8951f: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called topoisomerase inhibitors.

dysplasia (dis-PLAY-zha): Cells that look abnormal under a microscope, but are not cancer.

dysplastic nevi (dis-PLAS-tik NEE-vye): Atypical moles; moles whose appearance is different from that of common moles. Dysplastic nevi are generally larger than ordinary moles and have irregular and indistinct borders. Often their color is not uniform, and ranges from pink to dark brown; they usually are flat, but parts may be raised above the skin surface.

dyspnea: Difficult, painful breathing, or shortness of breath.

echocardiography: A procedure that uses ultrasonic waves directed over the chest wall to obtain a graphic record of the heart’s position, motion of the walls, or internal parts such as the valves.

ecteinascidin 743: An anticancer drug that inhibits the growth of cancer cells by disrupting the structure of tumor cell DNA.

edatrexate: An anticancer drug that belongs to a family of drugs called antimetabolites.

edema (eh-DEE-ma): Swelling caused by excess fluid in body tissues.

edrecolomab: A type of monoclonal antibody used in cancer detection or therapy. Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory- produced substances that can locate and bind to cancer cells.

EF5: A drug that is used to plan cancer treatment by measuring oxygen levels in tumor cells.

eflornithine: An antiprotozoal drug that is being studied for cancer prevention.

ejaculation: The release of semen through the penis during orgasm.

electrodesiccation (e-LEK-tro-des-ih-KAY-shun): The drying of tissue by a high-frequency electric current applied with a needle-shaped electrode.

electrolarynx (e-LEK-tro-LAIR-inks): A battery-operated instrument that makes a humming sound. An electrolarynx is used to help persons who have had the voice box (larynx) removed.

electroporation therapy: EPT. Treatment that generates electrical pulses through an electrode placed in a tumor to enhance the ability of anticancer drugs to enter tumor cells.

embolization (EM-bo-lih-ZAY-shun): The blocking of an artery by a clot or foreign material. Embolization can be done as treatment to block the flow of blood to a tumor.

emitefur: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

enalapril: An antihypertensive agent that can also be used to slow or prevent the progression of heart disease in people with childhood cancer treated with drugs that may be harmful to the heart.

encapsulated (en-KAP-soo-lay-ted): Confined to a specific, localized area and surrounded by a thin layer of tissue.

endocervical curettage (en-do-SER-vih-kul kyoo-reh-TAHZH): The scraping of the mucous membrane of the cervical canal using a spoon-shaped instrument called a curette.

endocrine cancer: Cancer that occurs in endocrine tissue, the tissue in the body that secretes hormones.

endocrinologist (en-do-krih-NAH-lo-jist): A doctor that specializes in diagnosing and treating hormone disorders.

endometrial disorder: Abnormal cell growth in the endometrium (the lining of the uterus).

endometriosis (en-do-mee-tree-O-sis): A benign condition in which tissue that looks like endometrial tissue grows in abnormal places in the abdomen.

endometrium (en-do-MEE-tree-um): The layer of tissue that lines the uterus.

endoscope (EN-do-skope): A thin, lighted tube used to look at tissues inside the body.

endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (en-do-SKAH-pik RET-ro-grade ko-LAN-jee-o-PAN-kree-a-TAW-gra-fee): ERCP. A procedure to x-ray the pancreatic duct, hepatic duct, common bile duct, duodenal papilla, and gallbladder. In this procedure, a thin, lighted tube (endoscope) is passed through the mouth and down into the first part of the small intestine (duodenum). A smaller tube (catheter) is then inserted through the endoscope into the bile and pancreatic ducts. A dye is injected through the catheter into the ducts, and an x-ray is taken.

endoscopy (en-DAHS-ko-pee): The use of a thin, lighted tube (called an endoscope) to examine the inside of the body.

eniluracil: An anticancer drug that increases the effectiveness of fluorouracil. Also called ethynyluracil.

enterostomal therapist (en-ter-o-STO-mul): A health professional trained in the care of persons with urostomies and other stomas.

environmental tobacco smoke: ETS. Smoke that comes from the burning of a tobacco product and smoke that is exhaled by smokers (second-hand smoke). Inhaling ETS is called involuntary or passive smoking.

enzyme: A substance that affects the rate at which chemical changes take place in the body.

ependymal tumors: A type of brain tumor that usually begins in the central canal of the spinal cord. Ependymomas may also develop in the cells lining the ventricles of the brain, which produce and store the special fluid (cerebrospinal fluid) that protects the brain and spinal cord. Also called ependymomas.

ependymomas (eh-PEN-dih-MO-ma): A type of brain tumor that usually begins in the central canal of the spinal cord. Ependymomas may also develop in the cells lining the ventricles of the brain, which produce and store the special fluid (cerebrospinal fluid) that protects the brain and spinal cord. Also called ependymal tumors.

epidermal growth factor receptor: A protein found on the surface of some breast cancer cells that allows epidermal growth factor to stimulate cell growth. Also called HER2/neu or c-erb B-2.

epidermis (ep-i-DER-mis): The upper or outer layer of the two main layers of tissue that make up the skin.

epidermoid carcinoma (ep-i-DER-moyd kar-sin-O-ma): A type of cancer in which the cells are flat and look like fish scales. Also called squamous cell carcinoma.

epidural: The space between the wall of the spinal canal and the covering of the spinal cord. An epidural injection is given into this space.

epidural block: An injection of an anesthetic drug given into the space between the wall of the spinal canal and the covering of the spinal cord.

epiglottis (ep-ih-GLAH-tis): The flap that covers the trachea during swallowing so that food does not enter the lungs.

epinephrine: A hormone. Also called adrenaline.

epirubicin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics.

epithelial (ep-ih-THEE-lee-ul): Refers to the cells that line the internal and external surfaces of the body.

epithelial carcinoma (ep-ih-THEE-lee-ul kar-sin-O-ma): Cancer that begins in the cells that line an organ.

epithelial ovarian cancer (ep-ih-THEE-lee-ul): Cancer that occurs in the cells lining the ovaries.

epithelium (EP-ih-THEE-lee-um): A thin layer of tissue that covers organs, glands, and other structures within the body.

epoetin alfa: A colony-stimulating factor that stimulates the production of blood cells, especially platelets, during chemotherapy. It is a cytokine that belongs to the family of drugs called hematopoietic (blood forming) agents.

Epstein-Barr virus: EBV. A common virus that remains dormant in most people. It has been associated with certain cancers, including Burkitt’s lymphoma, immunoblastic lymphoma, and nasopharyngeal carcinoma.

erb-38 immunotoxin: A toxic substance linked to an antibody that attaches to tumor cells and kills them.

ERCP: Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (en-do-SKAH-pik RET-ro-grade ko-LAN-jee-o-PAN-kree-a-TAW-gra-fee). A procedure to x-ray the bile and pancreatic ducts. In this procedure, a thin, lighted tube (endoscope) is passed through the mouth and down into the first part of the small intestine (duodenum). A smaller tube (catheter) is then inserted through the endoscope into the bile and pancreatic ducts. A dye is injected through the catheter into the ducts, and an x-ray is taken.

erythrocytes (eh-RITH-ro-sites): Cells that carry oxygen to all parts of the body. Also called red blood cells (RBCs).

erythroleukemia (eh-RITH-ro-loo-KEE-mee-a): Cancer of the blood-forming tissues in which large numbers of immature, abnormal red blood cells are found in the blood and bone marrow.

erythroplakia (eh-RITH-ro-PLAY-kee-a): A reddened patch with a velvety surface found in the mouth.

erythropoietin: A colony-stimulating factor that stimulates the production of blood cells, especially platelets, during chemotherapy. It is a cytokine that belongs to the family of drugs called hematopoietic (blood forming) agents.

esophageal (eh-SOF-a-JEE-al): Related to the esophagus, the muscular tube through which food passes from the throat to the stomach.

esophageal speech (eh-SOF-a-JEE-al): Speech produced by trapping air in the esophagus and forcing it out again. It is used by persons who have had their voice box (larynx) removed.

esophagectomy (eh-sof-a-JEK-toe-mee): An operation to remove a portion of the esophagus.

esophagoscopy (eh-sof-a-GAHS-ko-pee): Examination of the esophagus using a thin, lighted tube.

esophagram (eh-SOF-a-gram): A series of x-rays of the esophagus. The x-ray pictures are taken after the person drinks a solution that contains barium. The barium coats and outlines the esophagus on the x-ray. Also called a barium swallow.

esophagus (eh-SOF-a-gus): The muscular tube through which food passes from the throat to the stomach.

estramustine: A combination of the hormone estradiol (an estrogen) and nitrogen mustard (an anticancer drug). Used in the palliative therapy of prostate cancer.

estrogen receptor: ER. Protein found on some cancer cells to which estrogen will attach.

estrogen receptor negative: ER-. Breast cancer cells that do not have a protein (receptor molecule) to which estrogen will attach. Breast cancer cells that are ER- do not need the hormone estrogen to grow and usually do not respond to hormone (antiestrogen) therapy that blocks these receptor sites.

estrogen receptor positive: ER+. Breast cancer cells that have a protein (receptor molecule) to which estrogen will attach. Breast cancer cells that are ER+ need the hormone estrogen to grow and will usually respond to hormone (antiestrogen) therapy that blocks these receptor sites.

estrogen replacement therapy: ERT. Hormones (estrogen and/or progesterone) given to postmenopausal women, or women who have had their ovaries surgically removed. Hormones are given to replace the estrogen no longer produced by the ovaries.

estrogens (ES-tro-jins): A family of hormones that promote the development and maintenance of female sex characteristics.

etanidazole: A drug that increases the effectiveness of radiation therapy.

ethynyluracil: An anticancer drug that increases the effectiveness of fluorouracil. Also called eniluracil.

etidronate: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called bisphosphonates. Bisphosphosphonates are used as treatment for hypercalcemia (abnormally high levels of calcium in the blood) and for cancer that has spread to the bone (bone metastases).

etiology: The cause or origin of disease.

etoposide: An anticancer drug that is a podophyllotoxin derivative and belongs to the family of drugs called mitotic inhibitors.

evaluable disease: Disease that cannot be measured directly by the size of the tumor but can be evaluated by other methods specific to a particular clinical trial.

Ewing’s sarcoma (YOO-ingz sar-KO-ma): A type of bone cancer that usually forms in the middle (shaft) of large bones. Also called Ewing’s sarcoma/primitive neuroectodermal tumor (PNET).

excisional biopsy (EX-sih-zhon-al BY-ahp-see): The surgical procedure of removing a tumor by cutting it out. The biopsy is then examined under a microscope.

exemestane: An anticancer drug used to decrease estrogen production and suppress the growth of estrogen-dependent tumors.

extensive-stage small cell lung cancer: Cancer that has spread outside the lung to other tissues in the chest or to other parts of the body.

external-beam radiation (ray-dee-AY-shun): Radiation therapy that uses a machine to aim high-energy rays at the cancer. Also called external radiation.

external radiation (ray-dee-AY-shun): Radiation therapy that uses a machine to aim high-energy rays at the cancer. Also called external-beam radiation.

fallopian tubes (fa-LO-pee-in): Part of the female reproductive tract. The long slender tubes that connect the ovaries to the uterus.

familial dysplastic nevi (fa-MI-lee-yul dis-PLAS-tik NEE-vye): A condition that runs in certain families in which at least two members have dysplastic nevi (atypical moles) and have a tendency to develop melanoma.

familial polyposis (pah-li-PO-sis): An inherited condition in which numerous polyps (tissue masses) develop on the inside walls of the colon and rectum. It increases the risk for colon cancer.

Fanconi anemia: A rare and often fatal inherited disease in which the bone marrow fails to produce red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets, or a combination of these cells. The disease may transform into myelodysplastic syndrome or leukemia.

fatty acids: A major component of fats that are used by the body for energy and tissue development.

fazarabine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

fecal occult blood test (FEE-kul o-KULT): A test to check for blood in stool. (Fecal refers to stool. Occult means hidden.)

fenretinide: A drug being studied for cancer prevention; it belongs to the family of drugs called retinoids.

fentanyl: A narcotic opioid drug that is used in the treatment of pain.

fertility (fer-TIL-i-tee): The ability to produce children.

fetus (FEET-us): The unborn child developing in the uterus.

fiber: The parts of fruits and vegetables that cannot be digested. Also called bulk or roughage. Fiber may be used as a cancer prevention agent.

fibroid (FYE-broyd): A benign tumor made up of fibrous and muscular tissue.

fibrosarcoma: A type of soft tissue sarcoma that begins in fibrous tissue, which holds bones, muscles, and other organs in place.

fibrosis: The growth of fibrous tissue.

filgrastim: A colony-stimulating factor that stimulates the production of blood cells, especially platelets, during chemotherapy. It is a cytokine that belongs to the family of drugs called hematopoietic (blood forming) agents. Also called granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF).

finasteride: A drug used to reduce the amount of male hormone (testosterone) produced by the body.

fine-needle aspiration: The removal of tissue or fluid with a needle for examination under a microscope. Also called needle biopsy.

flavopiridol: Belongs to the family of anticancer drugs called flavinols.

flecainide: A drug that is used to treat abnormal heart rhythms. It may also relieve neuropathic pain, the burning, stabbing, or stinging pain that may arise from damage to nerves caused by some types of cancer or cancer treatment.

floxuridine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

flt3L: A drug that increases the number of immune cells, and may stimulate the immune system to kill cancer cells.

fluconazole: A drug that treats infections caused by fungi.

flucytosine: A drug that treats infections caused by fungi.

fludarabine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

fludeoxyglucose F 18: The radioactive form of glucose used in positron emission tomography (PET), a diagnostic imaging procedure.

fludrocortisone: A synthetic corticosteroid. It is used to replace steroid hormones normally produced by the adrenal gland.

fluoroscope (FLOOR-o-skope): An x-ray machine that makes it possible to see internal organs in motion.

fluoroscopy (floor-AHS-ko-pee): An x-ray procedure that makes it possible to see internal organs in motion.

fluorouracil (floor-o-YOOR-a-sil): An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

flutamide: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antiandrogens.

folic acid: A B complex vitamin that is being studied as a cancer prevention agent.

follicles (FOL-i-kuls): Shafts through which hair grows.

FR901228: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called depsipeptides.

fractionation: Dividing the total dose of radiation therapy into several smaller, equal doses delivered over a period of several days.

fulguration (ful-gyoor-AY-shun): Destroying tissue using an electric current.

fundus: The larger part of a hollow organ that is farthest away from the organ’s opening. The bladder, gallbladder, stomach, uterus, eye, and the cavity of the middle ear all have a fundus.

gadolinium texaphyrin: A substance that makes tumor cells more sensitive to radiation; it can also enhance tumor images using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Gadolinium texaphyrin belongs to the family of drugs called metalloporphyrin complexes.

gallbladder (GAWL-blad-er): The pear-shaped organ that sits below the liver. Bile is stored in the gallbladder.

gallium nitrate: A drug that lowers blood calcium. Used as treatment for hypercalcemia (too much calcium in the blood) and for cancer that has spread to the bone (bone metastases).

gamma knife: Radiation therapy in which high-energy rays are aimed at a tumor from many angles in a single treatment session.

ganciclovir: An antiviral agent used to prevent or treat cytomegalovirus infections that may occur when the body is immunosuppressed.

gastrectomy (gas-TREK-toe-mee): An operation to remove all or part of the stomach.

gastric (GAS-trik): Having to do with the stomach.

gastric atrophy (GAS-trik AT-ro-fee): A condition in which the stomach muscles shrink and become weak. The digestive (peptic) glands may also shrink, resulting in a lack of digestive juices.

gastroenterologist (GAS-tro-en-ter-AHL-o-jist): A doctor who specializes in diagnosing and treating disorders of the digestive system.

gastrointestinal: Refers to the stomach and intestine.

gastrointestinal tract (GAS-tro-in-TES-tih-nul): The stomach and intestines.

gastroscope (GAS-tro-skope): A thin, lighted tube used to view the inside of the stomach.

gastroscopy (gas-TRAHS-ko-pee): An examination of the inside of the stomach using a thin, lighted tube (called a gastroscope) passed through the mouth and esophagus.

G-CSF: Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor. A substance that stimulates the production of neutrophils, a type of white blood cell. Also called filgrastim.

geldanamycin analogue: An antineoplastic antibiotic drug that belongs to the family of drugs called ansamycins.

GEM 231: A drug that may inhibit the growth of malignant tumors.

gemcitabine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

gene: The functional and physical unit of heredity passed from parent to offspring. Genes are pieces of DNA, and most genes contain the information for making a specific protein.

gene deletion: The total loss or absence of a gene.

gene-modified: Cells that have been altered to contain different genetic material than they originally did.

gene therapy: Treatment that alters a gene. In studies of gene therapy for cancer, researchers are trying to improve the body’s natural ability to fight the disease or to make the cancer cells more sensitive to other kinds of therapy.

genetic: Inherited; having to do with information that is passed from parents to children through genes in sperm and egg cells.

genetic markers: Alterations in DNA that may indicate an increased risk of developing a specific disease or disorder.

genetic testing: Analyzing DNA to look for a genetic alteration that may indicate an increased risk for developing a specific disease or disorder.

genistein: A soybean product being studied for cancer prevention. It belongs to the family of drugs called enzyme inhibitors.

genitourinary system (GEN-ih-toe-YOO-rin-air-ee): The parts of the body that play a role in reproduction, in getting rid of waste products in the form of urine, or in both.

germ cell tumors: Tumors that begin in the cells that give rise to sperm or eggs. They can occur virtually anywhere in the body and can be either benign or malignant.

germ cells: The reproductive cells of the body, specifically, either egg or sperm cells.

germinoma (jer-mih-NO-ma): The most frequent type of germ cell tumor in the brain.

germline mutation: A gene change in the body’s reproductive cells (egg or sperm) that becomes incorporated into the DNA of every cell in the body of offspring; germline mutations are passed on from parents to offspring. Also called hereditary mutation.

gestational trophoblastic disease: A rare cancer in women of child-bearing age in which cancer cells grow in the tissues that are formed in the uterus following conception. Also called gestational trophoblastic tumor, gestational trophoblastic neoplasia, molar pregnancy, or choriocarcinoma.

gestational trophoblastic neoplasia: A rare cancer in women of child-bearing age in which cancer cells grow in the tissues that are formed in the uterus following conception. Also called gestational trophoblastic disease, gestational trophoblastic tumor, molar pregnancy, or choriocarcinoma.

gestational trophoblastic tumor: A rare cancer in women of child-bearing age in which cancer cells grow in the tissues that are formed in the uterus following conception. Also called gestational trophoblastic disease, gestational trophoblastic neoplasia, molar pregnancy, or choriocarcinoma.

GI14721: An antitumor drug that belongs to the family of drugs called topoisomerase inhibitors. It is a camptothecin analogue.

gland: An organ that produces and releases one or more substances for use in the body. Some glands produce fluids that affect tissues or organs. Others produce hormones or participate in blood production.

Gleason score: A system of grading prostate cancer cells to determine the best treatment and to predict how well a person is likely to do. A low Gleason score means the cancer cells are very similar to normal prostate cells; a high Gleason score means the cancer cells are very different from normal.

glial tumors: A general term for many types of tumors of the central nervous system, including astrocytomas, ependymal tumors, glioblastoma multiforme, and primitive neuroectodermal tumors.

glioblastoma (glee-o-blas-TOE-ma): A general term that refers to malignant astrocytoma, a type of brain tumor.

glioblastoma multiforme (glee-o-blas-TOE-ma mul-tih-FOR-may): A type of brain tumor that forms from glial (supportive) tissue of the brain. It grows very quickly and has cells that look very different from normal cells. Also called grade IV astrocytoma.

gliomas (glee-O-mas): Cancers of the brain and spinal cord which arise from glial, or supportive, cells.

gliosarcoma: A type of glioma.

glottis (GLAH-tis): The middle part of the larynx; the area where the vocal cords are located.

glufosfamide: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

glutamine: An amino acid used in nutrition therapy. It is also being studied for the treatment of diarrhea caused by radiation therapy to the pelvis.

GM-CSF: Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor. A substance that stimulates the production of white blood cells, especially granulocytes and macrophages. Also called sargramostim.

GM2-KLH vaccine: A substance used to stimulate the production of antibodies that fight certain cancer cells.

gonads: The part of the reproductive system that produces and releases eggs (ovaries) or sperm (testicles/testes).

goserelin: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogues. Goserelin is used to block hormone production in the ovaries or testicles.

gossypol: An anticancer drug extracted from the cotton plant.

gp 100: Glycoprotein 100 (gp 100) is a tumor-specific antigen used in the development of cancer vaccines.

GPX-100: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics. It is an anthracycline.

grade: The grade of a tumor is determined by how abnormal the cancer cells appear when examined under a microscope, the probable growth rate of the tumor, and its tendency to spread. The systems used to grade tumors vary with each type of cancer.

grading: A system for classifying cancer cells in terms of how abnormal they appear when examined under a microscope. The objective of a grading system is to provide information about the probable growth rate of the tumor and its tendency to spread. The systems used to grade tumors vary with each type of cancer. Grading plays a role in treatment decisions.

graft: Healthy skin, bone, or other tissue taken from one part of the body and used to replace diseased or injured tissue removed from another part of the body.

graft-versus-host disease: GVHD. A reaction of donated bone marrow or peripheral stem cells against a person’s tissue.

graft-versus-tumor: An immune response to a person’s tumor cells by immune cells present in a donor’s transplanted tissue, such as bone marrow or peripheral blood.

granisetron: A drug that prevents or reduces nausea and vomiting.

granulocyte (GRAN-yoo-lo-site): A type of white blood cell that fights bacterial infection. Neutrophils, eosinophils, and basophils are granulocytes.

granulocyte colony- stimulating factor: G-CSF. A substance that stimulates the production of blood cells, especially platelets, during chemotherapy. It is a cytokine that belongs to the family of drugs called hematopoietic (blood forming) agents. Also called filgrastim.

granulocytopenia: A deficiency in the number of granulocytes, a type of white blood cell.

groin: The area where the thigh meets the abdomen.

growth factors: Substances made by the body that function to regulate cell division and cell survival. Some growth factors are also produced in the laboratory and used in biological therapy.

GVHD: Graft-versus-host disease. A reaction of donated bone marrow or peripheral stem cells against a person’s tissue.

gynecologic cancer (guy-neh-ko-LAH-jik): Cancer of the female reproductive tract, including the cervix, endometrium, fallopian tubes, ovaries, uterus, and vagina.

gynecologic oncologists (guy-neh-ko-LAH-jik on-KOL-o-jists): Doctors who specialize in treating cancers of the female reproductive organs.

gynecologist (guy-neh-KAH-lo-jist): A doctor who specializes in treating diseases of the female reproductive organs.

hair follicles (FOL-i-kuls): Shafts or openings on the surface of the skin through which hair grows.

hairy cell leukemia: A type of chronic leukemia in which the abnormal white blood cells appear to be covered with tiny hairs when viewed under a microscope.

Helicobacter pylori (HEEL-ih-ko-BAK-ter pye-LOR-ee): Bacteria that cause inflammation and ulcers in the stomach.

hemangiopericytoma: A type of cancer involving blood vessels and soft tissue.

hematogenous: Originating in the blood or spread through the bloodstream.

hematologic malignancies: Cancers of the blood or bone marrow, including leukemia and lymphoma. Also called hematologic cancers.

hematologist (hee-ma-TOL-o-jist): A doctor who specializes in treating diseases of the blood.

hematoporphyrin derivative: A drug used in photodynamic therapy that is absorbed by tumor cells. When exposed to light, it becomes active and kills the cancer cells.

heparin: A drug that helps prevent blood clots from forming.

hepatic: Refers to the liver.

hepatitis (hep-a-TYE-tis): Inflammation of the liver.

hepatitis B: A type of hepatitis that is carried and passed to others through the blood or sexual contact.

hepatoblastoma (HEP-a-toe-blas-TOE-ma): A type of liver tumor that occurs in infants and children.

hepatocellular carcinoma (HEP-a-toe-SEL-yoo-ler kar-sin-O-ma): This is a type of adenocarcinoma, the most common type of liver tumor.

hepatocyte (HEP-a-toe-site): A liver cell.

hepatoma (hep-a-TOE-ma): A liver tumor.

HER2/neu gene: The gene that makes the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2. The protein produced is HER2/neu antigen, which is involved in growth of some cancer cells. Also called c-erbB-2.

hereditary mutation: A gene change in the body’s reproductive cells (egg or sperm) that becomes incorporated into the DNA of every cell in the body of offspring; hereditary mutations are passed on from parents to offspring. Also called germline mutation.

herpes virus (HER-peez VYE-rus): A member of the herpes family of viruses.

high-grade lymphomas: Includes large cell, immunoblastic, lymphoblastic, and small noncleaved cell lymphomas. These lymphomas grow quickly but have a better response to anticancer drugs than that seen with low-grade lymphomas.

histamine dihydrochloride: A drug being studied for its ability to enhance the effectiveness of IL-2 in treating acute myeloid leukemia.

HIV antibody: A substance produced by certain white blood cells in reaction to contact with HIV, the human immunodeficiency virus.

Hodgkin’s disease: A malignant disease of the lymphatic system that is characterized by painless enlargement of lymph nodes, the spleen, or other lymphatic tissue. It is sometimes accompanied by symptoms such as fever, weight loss, fatigue, and night sweats.

holmium HO 166 DOTMP: A drug containing a radioactive isotope that is used in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. Also called 166 Holium DOTMP.

homeopathic remedies: Small doses of medicines and/or herbs that are believed to stimulate the immune system.

homoharringtonine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the plant alkaloid family of drugs.

hormonal therapy: Treatment of cancer by removing, blocking, or adding hormones. Also called endocrine therapy.

hormone receptor test: A test to measure the amount of certain proteins, called hormone receptors, in cancer tissue. Hormones can attach to these proteins. A high level of hormone receptors may mean that hormones help the cancer grow.

hormone replacement therapy: HRT. Hormones (estrogen and/or progesterone) given to postmenopausal women or women who have had their ovaries surgically removed in order to replace the estrogen no longer produced by the ovaries.

hormone therapy: Treatment of cancer by removing, blocking, or adding hormones. Also called endocrine therapy.

hormones: Chemicals produced by glands in the body and circulated in the bloodstream. Hormones control the actions of certain cells or organs.

hu14.18-interleukin-2 fusion protein: An anticancer drug in which hu14.18, a monoclonal antibody, is combined with interleukin-2. The monoclonal antibody binds to the cancer cells and delivers IL-2 which stimulates the immune system to destroy the cancer cells.

human papillomavirus (pap-ih-LO-ma VYE-rus): HPV. A virus that causes abnormal tissue growth (warts) and is often associated with some types of cancer.

humidifier (hyoo-MID-ih-fye-er): A machine that puts moisture in the air.

hydrocephalus (hye-dro-SEF-uh-lus): The abnormal buildup of cerebrospinal fluid in the ventricles of the brain.

hydrocortisone: A drug used to relieve the symptoms of certain hormone shortages, and to suppress an immune response.

hydromorphone: A drug used to relieve pain.

hydroxyurea: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

hypercalcemia (hye-per-kal-SEE-mee-a): High levels of calcium in the blood.

hyperfractionation: A way of giving radiation therapy in smaller-than-usual doses two or three times a day instead of once a day.

hyperplasia (hye-per-PLAY-zha): An abnormal increase in the number of cells in an organ or tissue.

hypersensitivity: An exaggerated response by the immune system to a drug or other substance.

hyperthermia (hye-per-THER-mee-a): A type of treatment in which body tissue is exposed to high temperatures to damage and kill cancer cells, or to make cancer cells more sensitive to the effects of radiation and certain anticancer drugs.

hyperthermic perfusion: A procedure in which a warmed solution containing anticancer drugs is used to bathe, or is passed through the blood vessels of, the tissue or organ containing the tumor.

hyperthyroidism: A condition in which the thyroid gland produces too much thyroid hormone.

hyperuricemia: A buildup of uric acid (a byproduct of metabolism) in the blood; a side effect of some anticancer drugs.

hypopharynx: The bottom part of the throat. Cancer of the hypopharynx is also called hypopharyngeal cancer.

hypothalamus (hye-po-THAL-uh-mus): The area of the brain that controls body temperature, hunger, and thirst.

hysterectomy (hiss-ter-EK-toe-mee): An operation in which the uterus is removed.

ICI 182780: A drug that blocks estrogen activity in the body and is used in the therapy of estrogen dependent tumors such as breast cancer.

idarubicin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics. Also called 4-demethoxydaunorubicin.

IDEC-Y2B8 monoclonal antibody: An anticancer drug that is a combination of a monoclonal antibody and a radioisotope (yttrium Y 90).

idoxifene: A drug that blocks the effects of estrogen.

idoxuridine: A drug that reduces the risk of cancer cell growth by interfering with the cells’ DNA.

ifosfamide: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

ileostomy (il-ee-AHS-toe-mee): An opening into the ileum, part of the small intestine, from the outside of the body. An ileostomy provides a new path for waste material to leave the body after part of the intestine has been removed.

IM-862: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors.

imagery: A technique in which the person focuses on positive images in his or her mind.

imaging: Tests that produce pictures of areas inside the body.

imaging procedures: Methods of producing pictures of areas inside the body.

imipenem: An antibiotic drug used to treat infection.

immune function: Production and action of cells that fight disease or infection.

immune response: The activity of the immune system against foreign substances (antigens).

immune system (im-YOON): The complex Network of organs and cells that defends the body against infection or disease.

immunocompromised: Having a weakened immune system caused by certain diseases or treatments.

immunodeficiency: The decreased ability of the body to fight infection and disease.

immunodeficiency syndrome: The inability of the body to produce an immune response.

immunoglobulins: Proteins that function as antibodies.

immunologic adjuvant: A drug that stimulates the immune system to respond to disease.

immunology: The study of the body’s immune system.

immunoscintigraphy: An imaging procedure in which antibodies labeled with radioactive substances are given to the person. A picture is taken of sites in the body where the antibody localizes.

immunosuppression: Suppression of the body’s immune system and its ability to fight infections or disease. Immunosuppression may be deliberately induced with drugs, such as in preparation for bone marrow or other organ transplantation in order to prevent rejection of the donor tissue. It may also result from certain diseases, such as AIDS or lymphoma, or from anticancer drugs.

immunosuppressive therapy: Therapy used to decrease the body’s immune response, such as drugs given to prevent transplant rejection.

immunotherapy (IM-yoo-no-THER-a-pee): Treatment to stimulate or restore the ability of the person’s immune system to fight infection and disease. Also used to lessen side effects that may be caused by some cancer treatments. Also called biological therapy or biological response modifier (BRM) therapy.

immunotoxins: Toxic substances linked to an antibody that attaches to tumor cells and kills them.

implant radiation: Radiation therapy that is given internally. This is done by placing radioactive material that is sealed in needles, seeds, wires, or catheters directly into or near the tumor. Also called internal radiation or brachytherapy.

implantable pump: A small device installed under the skin to administer a steady dose of drugs.

impotent (IM-po-tent): Inability to have an erection adequate for sexual intercourse.

in situ cancer: Early cancer that has not spread to neighboring tissue.

in vitro: In the laboratory (outside the body). The opposite of in vivo (in the body).

in vivo: In the body. The opposite of in vitro (outside the body).

incidence: The number of new cases of a disease diagnosed each year.

incision (in-SIH-zhun): A cut made in the body during surgery.

incisional biopsy (in-SIH-zhun-ul bY-ahp-see): The procedure of removing a sample of tissue by cuts made into the body during surgery. The biopsy is then examined under a microscope.

incomplete Freund’s adjuvant: A drug used in vaccine therapy to stimulate the immune system. Also called Montanide ISA-51.

incontinence (in-KAHN-tih-nens): Inability to control the flow of urine from the bladder.

incubated: Grown in the laboratory under controlled conditions. (For instance, white blood cells can be grown in special conditions so that they attack specific cancer cells when returned to the body.)

indinavir: A drug that interferes with the ability of a virus to make copies of itself.

indium In 111 pentetreotide: An anticancer drug belonging to a family of drugs called radiopharmaceuticals.

indolent (IN-doe-lint): A type of cancer that grows slowly.

indolent lymphoma: Lymphoma that grows slowly and has few symptoms.

indomethacin: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Indomethacin reduces pain, fever, swelling and redness. It is also being used to reduce tumor-induced suppression of the immune system and to increase the effectiveness of anticancer drugs.

induction therapy: Treatment designed to be used as a first step toward shrinking the cancer and in evaluating response to drugs and other agents. Induction therapy is followed by additional therapy to eliminate whatever cancer remains.

infertility: The inability to produce children.

infiltrating cancer: Cancer that has spread beyond the layer of tissue in which it developed and is growing into surrounding, healthy tissues. Also called invasive cancer.

inflammatory bowel disease: A general term that refers to the inflammation of the colon and rectum. Inflammatory bowel disease includes ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.

inflammatory breast cancer: A type of breast cancer in which the breast looks red and swollen, and feels warm. The skin of the breast may also show the pitted appearance called peau d’orange (like the skin of an orange). The redness and warmth occur because the cancer cells block the lymph vessels in the skin.

infusion: The introduction of a fluid, including drugs, into the blood stream. Also called intravenous infusion.

inguinal orchiectomy (IN-gwin-al or-kee-EK-toe-mee): An operation in which the testicle is removed through an incision in the groin.

insulin (IN-su-lin): A hormone made by the islet cells of the pancreas. Insulin controls the amount of sugar in the blood.

interferons (in-ter-FEER-ons): Biological response modifiers (substances that can improve the body’s natural response to disease). Interferons interfere with the division of cancer cells and thus slow the growth of the tumor. There are several types of interferons, including interferon alfa, beta, and gamma. These substances are normally produced by the body. They are also made in the laboratory for use in treating cancer and other diseases.

interleukin-2 (in-ter-LOO-kin): IL-2. A type of biological response modifier (a substance that can improve the body’s natural response to disease) that stimulates the growth of certain disease-fighting blood cells in the immune system. These substances are normally produced by the body. They are also made in the laboratory for use in treating cancer and other diseases. Also called aldesleukin.

interleukin-3: IL-3. A type of biological response modifier (a substance that can improve the body’s natural response to disease) that enhances the immune system’s ability to fight tumor cells. These substances are normally produced by the body. They are also made in the laboratory for use in treating cancer and other diseases.

interleukin-4: IL-4. A type of biological response modifier (a substance that can improve the body’s natural response to disease) that enhances the immune system’s ability to fight tumor cells. These substances are normally produced by the body. They are also made in the laboratory for use in treating cancer and other diseases.

interleukin-4 pe38kdel immunotoxin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called immunotoxins.

interleukin-11: IL-11. A type of biological response modifier (a substance that can improve the body’s natural response to disease) that stimulates immune response and may reduce toxicity to the gastrointestinal system resulting from cancer therapy. These substances are normally produced by the body. They are also made in the laboratory for use in treating cancer and other diseases. Also called oprelvekin.

interleukin-12: IL-12. A type of biological response modifier (a substance that can improve the body’s natural response to disease) that enhances the ability of the immune system to kill tumor cells, and that may interfere with blood flow to the tumor. These substances are normally produced by the body. They are also made in the laboratory for use in treating cancer and other diseases.

interleukins (in-ter-LOO-kins): Biological response modifiers (substances that can improve the body’s natural response to disease) that help the immune system fight infection and cancer. These substances are normally produced by the body. They are also made in the laboratory for use in treating cancer and other diseases.

intermediate-grade lymphomas: Includes diffuse small, cleaved cell lymphoma and diffuse large, noncleaved cell lymphoma. These are more aggressive than low-grade lymphomas, but they have a better response to anticancer drugs.

internal radiation (ray-dee-AY-shun): Radiation therapy that is given internally. This is done by placing radioactive material that is sealed in needles, seeds, wires, or catheters directly into or near the tumor. Also called implant radiation or brachytherapy.

intestine (in-TES-tin): The long, tube-shaped organ in the abdomen that completes the process of digestion. It consists of the small and large intestines. Also called the bowel.

intoplicine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called topoisomerase inhibitors.

intracarotid infusion: The introduction of fluids and drugs directly into the carotid artery, the main artery in the neck; it carries blood from the heart to the brain.

itraconazole: A drug used to prevent or treat fungal infections; it belongs to the family of drugs called antifungal agents.

intracranial tumors: Tumors that occur in the brain.

intraductal carcinoma (DUK-tal kar-sin-O-ma in SYE-too): Abnormal cells that involve only the lining of a duct. The cells have not spread outside the duct to other tissues in the breast. Also called ductal carcinoma in situ.

intraepithelial (in-tra-eh-pih-THEEL-ee-ul): Within the layer of cells that form the surface or lining of an organ.

intrahepatic (in-tra-hep-AT-ik): Within the liver.

intrahepatic bile duct (in-tra-hep-AT-ik): The bile duct that passes through and drains bile from the liver.

intrahepatic infusion: The delivery of anticancer drugs directly to the blood vessels of the liver.

intraoperative radiation therapy: IORT. Radiation treatment aimed directly at a tumor during surgery.

intraperitoneal (IN-tra-per-ih-toe-NEE-al): Within the peritoneal cavity, the area that contains the abdominal organs.

intraperitoneal chemotherapy (IN-tra-per-ih-toe-NEE-al KEE-mo-THER-a-pee): Treatment in which anticancer drugs are put directly into the abdominal cavity through a thin tube.

intraperitoneal infusion: A method of delivering fluids and drugs directly into the abdominal cavity through a thin tube.

intrathecal (in-tra-THEE-cal): The thin space between the lining of the spinal cord and brain.

intrathecal chemotherapy (in-tra-THEE-cal KEE-mo-THER-a-pee): Anticancer drugs infused into the thin space between the lining of the spinal cord and brain to treat or reduce the risk of cancers in the brain and spinal cord.

intravenous (in-tra-VEE-nus): IV. Injected into a blood vessel.

intravenous pyelogram (in-tra-VEE-nus PYE-el-o-gram): IVP. A series of x-rays of the kidneys, ureters, and bladder. The x-rays are taken after a dye is injected into a blood vessel. The dye is concentrated in the urine, which outlines the kidneys, ureters, and bladder on the x-rays.

intravenous pyelography (in-tra-VEE-nus pye-LAH-gra-fee): IVP. X-ray study of the kidneys, ureters, and bladder. The x-rays are taken after a dye is injected into a blood vessel. The dye is concentrated in the urine, which outlines the kidneys, ureters, and bladder on the x-rays.

intraventricular infusion: The delivery of a drug into a space within an organ.

intravesical (in-tra-VES-ih-kal): Within the bladder.

invasive cancer: Cancer that has spread beyond the layer of tissue in which it developed and is growing into surrounding, healthy tissues. Also called infiltrating cancer.

invasive cervical cancer: Cancer that has spread from the surface of the cervix to tissue deeper in the cervix or to other parts of the body.

ionomycin: An antibiotic drug used to treat infection.

IORT: Intraoperative radiation therapy. Radiation treatment aimed directly at a tumor during surgery.

irinotecan: An anticancer drug that belongs to a family of anticancer drugs called topoisomerase inhibitors. It is a camptothecin analogue. Also called CPT 11.

ISIS 3521: An anticancer drug that may inhibit tumor growth.

ISIS 5132: An anticancer drug that may inhibit tumor growth.

islet cell cancer (EYE-let): Cancer arising from cells in the islets of Langerhans, which are found in the pancreas.

islets of Langerhans (EYE-lets of lANG-er-hanz): Hormone-producing cells in the pancreas.

isoflavones: Compounds found in soy beans that may help prevent cancer.

isolated hepatic perfusion: A procedure in which a catheter is placed into the artery that provides blood to the liver; another catheter is placed into the vein that takes blood away from the liver. This temporarily separates the liver’s blood supply from blood circulating throughout the rest of the body and allows high doses of anticancer drugs to be directed to the liver only.

isotretinoin: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called retinoids. It is used in the treatment of acne and psoriasis and is being studied in cancer prevention. Also called 13-cis retinoic acid.

IV: Intravenous (in-tra-VEE-nus). Injected into a blood vessel.

IVP: Intravenous pyelogram or intravenous pyelography (in-tra-VEE-nus PYE-el-o-gram or pye-LAH-gra-fee). A series of x-rays of the kidneys, ureters, and bladder. The x-rays are taken after a dye is injected into a blood vessel. The dye is concentrated in the urine, which outlines the kidneys, ureters, and bladder on the x-rays.

jaundice (JAWN-dis): A condition in which the skin and the whites of the eyes become yellow and the urine darkens. Jaundice occurs when the liver is not working properly or when a bile duct is blocked.

Kaposi’s sarcoma (KAP-o-seez sar-KO-ma): A type of cancer characterized by the abnormal growth of blood vessels that develop into skin lesions or occur internally.

keloid (KEY-loyd): A thick, irregular scar caused by excessive tissue growth at the site of an incision or wound.

keratinocyte growth factor: A substance that stimulates the growth of epithelial cells that line the surface of the mouth and intestinal tract.

ketoconazole: A drug that treats infection caused by a fungus. It is also used as a treatment for prostate cancer as it can block the production of the male sex hormone.

ketorolac: A drug that belongs to a family of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents. It is being studied in cancer prevention.

keyhole limpet hemocyanin: KLH. One of a Network of drugs called immune modulators, given as a vaccine to help the body respond to cancer.

kidneys (KID-neez): A pair of organs in the abdomen that remove waste from the blood. The waste leaves the body as urine.

killer cells: White blood cells that attack tumor cells and body cells that have been invaded by foreign substances.

KRN5500: An anticancer drug that belongs to a family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics. It is an anthracycline.

Krukenberg tumor (KROO-ken-berg TOO-mer): A tumor in the ovary caused by the spread of stomach cancer.

KW2189: A semisynthetic anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics.

L-778,123: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called enzyme inhibitors. It may inhibit the transformation of normal cells into cancer cells.

lactose intolerance: The inability to digest or absorb lactose, a type of sugar found in milk and other dairy products.

lamivudine: A drug used to treat infection caused by viruses.

laparoscopic-assisted colectomy: Surgery done with the aid of a laparoscope (a thin, lighted tube) to remove part or all of the colon through small incisions made in the wall of the abdomen.

laparoscopy (lap-a-RAHS-ko-pee): The insertion of a thin, lighted tube (called a laparoscope) through the abdominal wall to inspect the inside of the abdomen and remove tissue samples.

laparotomy (lap-a-RAH-toe-mee): A surgical incision made in the wall of the abdomen.

large cell carcinomas (kar-sin-O-mas): A Network of lung cancers in which the cells are large and look abnormal when viewed under a microscope.

laryngeal (lair-IN-jee-al): Refers to the larynx.

laryngectomee (lair-in-JEK-toe-mee): A person who has had his or her larynx (voice box) removed.

laryngectomy (lair-in-JEK-toe-mee): An operation to remove all or part of the larynx (voice box).

laryngoscope (lair-IN-jo-skope): A thin, lighted tube used to examine the larynx (voice box).

laryngoscopy (lair-in-GOS-ko-pee): Examination of the larynx (voice box) with a mirror (indirect laryngoscopy) or with a laryngoscope (direct laryngoscopy).

larynx (LAIR-inks): The area of the throat containing the vocal cords and used for breathing, swallowing, and talking. Also called the “voice box.”

laser (LAY-zer): A device that concentrates light into an intense, narrow beam used to cut or destroy tissue. It is used in microsurgery, photodynamic therapy, and for a variety of diagnostic purposes.

laser therapy: The use of an intensely powerful beam of light to kill cancer cells.

leflunomide: An anticancer drug that works by inhibiting a cancer cell growth factor. Also called SU101.

leiomyosarcoma: A tumor of the muscles in the uterus or abdomen/pelvis.

lepirudin: A drug that inhibits blood clotting; it is being studied in cancer treatment.

leptomeningeal cancer: A tumor that involves the tissues that cover the brain and spinal cord.

leptomeningeal metastases: Cancer that has spread from the original (primary) tumor to the tissues that cover the brain and spinal cord.

lesion (LEE-zhun): An area of abnormal tissue change.

letrozole: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called nonsteroidal aromatase inhibitors. Letrozole is used to decrease estrogen production and suppress the growth of estrogen dependent tumors.

leucovorin: A drug used to protect normal cells from high doses of the anticancer drug methotrexate. It is also used to increase the antitumor effects of fluorouracil and tegafur-uracil, an oral treatment alternative to intravenous fluorouracil.

leukapheresis: Removal of the blood to collect specific blood cells; the remaining blood is returned to the body.

leukemia (loo-KEE-mee-a): Cancer of blood-forming tissue.

leukocytes (LOO-ko-sites): Cells that help the body fight infections and other diseases. Also called white blood cells (WBCs).

leukoplakia (loo-ko-PLAY-kee-a): A white patch that may develop on mucous membranes, such as the cheek, gums, or tongue, and may become cancerous.

leuprolide: An anticancer drug that belongs to a family of drugs called gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogues. Used to block hormone production in the ovaries or testicles.

levamisole: An antiparasitic drug that is also being studied in cancer therapy with fluorouracil.

LH-RH: Abbreviation for luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone, a hormone that controls the production of sex hormones in men and women.

liarozole: An anticancer drug that promotes differentiation by increasing the levels of retinoic acid within the tumor.

Li-Fraumeni syndrome: A rare, inherited predisposition to multiple cancers, caused by an alteration in the p53 tumor suppressor gene.

ligation (lye-GAY-shun): The process of tying off blood vessels so that blood cannot flow to a part of the body or to a tumor.

limb perfusion (per-FYOO-zhun): A technique that may be used to deliver anticancer drugs directly to an arm or leg. The flow of blood to and from the limb is temporarily stopped with a tourniquet, and anticancer drugs are put directly into the blood of the limb. This allows the person to receive a high dose of drugs in the area where the cancer occurred.

limited-stage small cell lung cancer: Cancer is found in one lung and in nearby lymph nodes.

lipids: Fats found in the body.

liposarcoma: A rare cancer of the fat cells.

liposomal: A drug preparation that contains the active drug in very tiny fat particles. This fat-encapsulated drug is absorbed better and its distribution to the tumor site is improved.

lisofylline: A drug that may protect healthy cells from chemotherapy and radiation without inhibiting the effects of these therapies on tumor cells.

liver: A large, glandular organ, located in the upper abdomen, that cleanses the blood and aids in digestion by secreting bile.

liver metastases: Cancer that has spread from the original (primary) tumor to the liver.

liver scan: An image of the liver created on a computer screen or on film. A radioactive substance is injected into a blood vessel and travels through the bloodstream. It collects in the liver, especially in abnormal areas, and can be detected by the scanner.

LMB-1 immunotoxin: A toxic substance linked to an antibody that attaches to tumor cells and kills them.

LMB-2 immunotoxin: A toxic substance linked to an antibody that attaches to tumor cells and kills them.

LMB-7 immunotoxin: A toxic substance linked to an antibody that attaches to tumor cells and kills them.

LMB-9 immunotoxin: A toxic substance linked to an antibody that attaches to tumor cells and kills them.

lobaplatin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called platinum compounds.

lobe: A portion of an organ such as the liver, lung, breast, or brain.

lobectomy (lo-BEK-toe-mee): The removal of a lobe.

lobular carcinoma in situ (LOB-yoo-lar kar-sin-O-ma in SYE-too): LCIS. Abnormal cells found in the lobules of the breast. This condition seldom becomes invasive cancer. However, having lobular carcinoma in situ increases one’s risk of developing breast cancer in either breast.

lobule (LOB-yule): A small lobe or subdivision of a lobe.

local cancer: An invasive malignant cancer confined entirely to the organ where the cancer began.

local therapy: Treatment that affects cells in the tumor and the area close to it.

localized: Restricted to the site of origin without evidence of spread.

localized gallbladder cancer: Cancer is found only in the tissues that make up the wall of the gallbladder; it can be removed completely in an operation.

locally advanced cancer: Cancer that has spread only to nearby tissues or lymph nodes.

lomustine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

loperamide hydrochloride: An antidiarrheal drug.

losoxantrone: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antipyrazoles.

lower GI series: X-rays of the colon and rectum that are taken after the person is given a barium enema.

low-grade lymphomas: Lymphomas that tend to grow and spread slowly, including chronic lymphocytic lymphoma and follicular small cleaved cell lymphoma. Also called indolent lymphomas.

LU 79553: An anticancer drug that kills cancer cells by affecting DNA synthesis.

LU-103793: An anticancer drug that reduces the risk of tumor cell growth and reproduction.

lubricants (LOO-brih-kants): Oily or slippery substances.

lumbar puncture: The insertion of a needle into the lower part of the spinal column to collect cerebrospinal fluid or to give anticancer drugs intrathecally. Also called a spinal tap.

lumpectomy (lump-EK-toe-mee): Surgery to remove the tumor and a small amount of normal tissue around it.

lung metastases: Cancer that has spread from the original (primary) tumor to the lung.

lurtotecan: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called topoisomerase inhibitors.

luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone agonist (LOO-tin-eye-zing. . .AG-o-nist): LH-RH agonist. A substance that closely resembles luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LH-RH), which controls the secretion of sex hormones. However, LH-RH agonists affect the body differently than does LH-RH. LH-RH agonists eventually cause a decrease in the secretion of sex hormones.

lutetium texaphrin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs used in photodynamic therapy. This drug is a photosensitizer; when activated by light it can kill cancer cells.

LY231514: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called enzyme inhibitors.

LY353381 hydrochloride: A hormone substance used in the treatment of some types of cancer.

lymph (limf): The almost colorless fluid that travels through the lymphatic system and carries cells that help fight infection and disease.

lymph node drainage: The flow of lymph from an area of tissue into a particular lymph node.

lymph node mapping: The use of dyes and radioactive substances to identify lymph nodes that contain tumor cells.

lymph nodes: Small organs located throughout the body along the channels of the lymphatic system. The lymph nodes store special cells that fight infection and other diseases. Clusters of lymph nodes are found in the underarms, groin, neck, chest, and abdomen. Also called lymph glands.

lymphadenectomy: A surgical procedure in which the lymph nodes are removed and examined to see if they contain cancer. Also called lymph node dissection.

lymphangiogram (lim-FAN-jee-o-gram): X-rays of the lymphatic system. A dye is injected into a lymphatic vessel and travels throughout the lymphatic system. The dye outlines the lymphatic vessels and organs on the x-ray.

lymphangiography (lim-FAN-jee-AH-gra-fee): An x-ray study of the lymphatic system. A dye is injected into a lymphatic vessel and travels throughout the lymphatic system. The dye outlines the lymphatic vessels and organs on the x-ray.

lymphatic system (lim-FAT-ik): The tissues and organs that produce, store, and carry white blood cells that fight infection and other diseases. This system includes the bone marrow, spleen, thymus, and lymph nodes and a network of thin tubes that carry lymph and white blood cells. These tubes branch, like blood vessels, into all the tissues of the body.

lymphedema (LIMF-eh-DEE-ma): A condition in which excess lymph collects in tissue and causes swelling. It may occur in the arm or leg after lymph vessels or lymph nodes in the underarm or groin are removed.

lymphocytes (LIM-fo-sites): White blood cells. Lymphocytes have a number of roles in the immune system, including the production of antibodies and other substances that fight infection and other diseases.

lymphocytic (lim-fo-SIT-ik): Referring to lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell.

lymphography: An x-ray study of lymph nodes and lymphatic vessels made visible by the injection of a special dye.

lymphoid (LIM-foyd): Referring to lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell. Also refers to tissue in which lymphocytes develop.

lymphokine-activated killer cells: White blood cells that are stimulated in a laboratory to kill tumor cells. Also called LAK cells.

lymphoma (lim-FO-ma): Cancer that arises in cells of the lymphatic system.

lymphomatoid granulomatosis: Destructive growth of lymph cells, usually involving the lungs, skin, kidneys, and central nervous system. Grades I and II are not considered cancerous, but grade III is considered a lymphoma.

lymphoproliferative disorders: Diseases in which cells of the lymphatic system grow excessively. These disorders are often treated similarly to cancer.

M proteins: Antibodies or parts of antibodies found in unusually large amounts in the blood or urine of people with multiple myeloma.

MAGE-3: A gene found in some types of tumors.

magnetic resonance imaging (mag-NET-ik REZ-o-nans IM-a-jing): MRI. A procedure in which a magnet linked to a computer is used to create detailed pictures of areas inside the body.

maintenance therapy: Treatment that is given to help reduce the risk of relapse in persons whose cancer is in remission.

malabsorption syndrome: A Network of symptoms such as gas, bloating, abdominal pain, and diarrhea resulting from the body’s inability to properly absorb nutrients.

malignancy: A cancerous tumor that can invade and destroy nearby tissue and spread to other parts of the body.

malignant (ma-LIG-nant): Cancerous; a growth with a tendency to invade and destroy nearby tissue and spread to other parts of the body.

malignant ascites: A condition in which fluid containing cancer cells collects in the abdomen.

malignant fibrous histiocytoma: A sarcoma that usually begins in soft tissue. It usually appears as an enlarging, painful mass that can cause fracture due to destruction of the bone by a spreading tumor.

malignant meningioma: A rare, quickly growing tumor that occurs in the membranes that cover and protect the brain and spinal cord (meninges).

malignant mesothelioma: A rare type of cancer in which malignant cells are found in the sac lining the chest or abdomen. Exposure to airborne asbestos particles increases one’s risk of developing malignant mesothelioma.

MALT lymphoma: Mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue lymphoma. A type of cancer that arises in cells in mucosal tissue that are involved in antibody production.

mammogram (MAM-o-gram): An x-ray of the breast.

mammography (mam-OG-ra-fee): An x-ray study of the breast.

mantle field (MAN-tul): The area of the neck, chest, and lymph nodes in the armpit that are exposed to radiation.

marimastat: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors. Marimastat is a matrix metalloproteinase inhibitor.

marker: A diagnostic indication that disease may develop.

mastectomy (mas-TEK-toe-mee): Surgery to remove the breast (or as much of the breast tissue as possible).

MDL 101,731: A drug that belongs to a family of drugs called ribonucleotide reductase inhibitors.

measurable disease: A tumor that can be accurately measured in size. This information can be used to judge response to treatment.

mechlorethamine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

medial supraclavicular lymph nodes: Lymph nodes located above the collar bone and between the center of the body and a line drawn through the nipple to the shoulder.

mediastinoscopy (MEE-dee-a-stin-AHS-ko-pee): A procedure in which a tube is inserted into the chest to view the organs in the area between the lungs and nearby lymph nodes. The tube is inserted through an incision above the breastbone. This procedure is usually used to get a tissue sample from the lymph nodes on the right side of the chest.

mediastinum (mee-dee-a-STYE-num): The area between the lungs. The organs in this area include the heart and its large blood vessels, the trachea, the esophagus, the bronchi, and lymph nodes.

medical castration: Refers to the use of drugs to suppress the function of the ovaries or testicles.

medical oncologist (on-KOL-o-jist): A doctor who specializes in diagnosing and treating cancer using chemotherapy, hormone therapy, and biological therapy. A medical oncologist often serves as the person’s main caretaker and coordinates treatment provided by other specialists.

medroxyprogesterone: A hormonal anticancer drug that is also used in cancer prevention. It belongs to the family of drugs called progestins.

medulloblastoma (MED-yoo-lo-blas-TOE-ma): A malignant brain tumor that begins in the lower part of the brain and can spread to the spine or to other parts of the body. Medulloblastomas are sometimes called primitive neuroectodermal tumors (PNET).

megestrol: A drug that belongs to the Network of hormones called progestins, used as hormone therapy to block estrogen and to suppress the effects of estrogen and androgens. It is also used to stimulate the appetite in people with cancer.

melanin (MEL-a-nin): The substance that gives the skin its color.

melanocytes (mel-AN-o-sites): Cells in the skin that produce and contain the pigment called melanin.

melanoma: A form of skin cancer that arises in melanocytes, the cells that produce pigment. Melanoma usually begins in a mole.

melanoma vaccine: A cancer vaccine prepared from human melanoma cancer cells. It is used either alone or with other therapy in treating melanoma.

melphalan: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

membrane: A very thin layer of tissue that covers a surface.

MEN-10755: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics.

meningeal: Refers to the meninges, the tissue covering the brain and spinal cord.

meningeal metastases: Cancer that has spread from the original (primary) tumor to the tissue covering the brain and/or spinal cord.

meninges (meh-NIN-jeez): The three membranes that cover and protect the brain and spinal cord.

meningioma (meh-nin-jee-O-ma): A type of tumor that occurs in the meninges, the membranes that cover and protect the brain and spinal cord. Meningiomas usually grow slowly.

menopause (MEN-o-pawz): The time of life when a woman’s menstrual periods stop for at least a year. Also called “change of life.”

menstrual cycle (MEN-stroo-al): The monthly cycle of hormonal changes from the beginning of one menstrual period to the beginning of the next.

menstruation: Periodic discharge of blood and tissue from the uterus. Until menopause, menstruation occurs approximately every 28 days when a woman is not pregnant.

mercaptopurine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

Merkel cell cancer: A rare type of cancer that develops on or just beneath the skin.

mesenchymal: Refers to cells that develop into connective tissue, blood vessels, and lymphatic tissue.

mesna: A drug that helps protect the kidneys and bladder from the toxic effects of anticancer drugs, such as ifosfamide and cyclophosphamide.

metabolism: The chemical and physical processes that occur to maintain the body and produce energy.

metaplasia: A change of cells to a form that does not normally occur in the tissue in which it is found.

metastasis (meh-TAS-ta-sis): The spread of cancer from one part of the body to another. Cells in the metastatic (secondary) tumor are the same type as those in the original (primary) tumor.

metastasize (meh-TAS-ta-size): To spread from one part of the body to another. When cancer cells metastasize and form secondary tumors, the cells in the metastatic tumor are like those in the original (primary) tumor.

metastatic cancer: Cancer that has spread from the place in which it started to other parts of the body.

methotrexate: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

methoxsalen: A drug used in ultraviolet light therapy.

methylphenidate: A drug that is a central nervous system stimulant.

methylprednisolone: A corticosteroid hormone replacement.

metoclopramide: A drug that prevents or reduces nausea and vomiting.

metronidazole: A drug used to treat bacterial, fungal, and parasitic infections. It is also being studied in the treatment of some cancers.

MG98: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antisense compounds. These drugs interfere with production of certain proteins in the cell.

microcalcifications (MY-krow-kal-si-fi-KAY-shunz): Tiny deposits of calcium in the breast that cannot be felt but can be detected on a mammogram. A cluster of these very small specks of calcium may indicate that cancer is present.

mifepristone: An anticancer drug that blocks the action of progesterone, a hormone that affects the growth of some cancers.

mineral: A nutrient required to maintain health.

misoprostol: A radioprotective agent that belongs to the family of drugs called prostaglandins.

mitolactol: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

mitomycin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics.

mitotane: An anticancer drug used in treating adrenocortical cancer and ACTH producing pituitary tumors (Cushing’s disease).

mitotic inhibitors: Drugs that kill cancer cells by interfering with cell division (mitotis).

mitoxantrone: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics.

mivobulin isethionate: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called mitotic inhibitors. Also called CI-980.

mixed gliomas: Brain tumors that occur in more than one type of brain cell, including astrocytes, ependymal cells, and/or oligodendrocytes.

modified radical mastectomy (mas-TEK-toe-mee): Surgical procedure in which the breast, some of the lymph nodes in the armpit, and the lining over the chest muscles are removed.

molar pregnancy: A rare cancer in women of child-bearing age in which cancer cells grow in the tissues that are formed in the uterus following conception. Also called gestational trophoblastic disease, gestational trophoblastic neoplasia, gestational trophoblastic tumor, or choriocarcinoma.

mole: A benign growth on the skin (usually tan, brown, or flesh-colored) that contains a cluster of melanocytes and surrounding supportive tissue.

monoclonal antibodies (MAH-no-KLO-nul AN-tih-BAH-deez): Laboratory-produced substances that can locate and bind to cancer cells wherever they are in the body. Many monoclonal antibodies are used in cancer detection or therapy; each one recognizes a different protein on certain cancer cells. Monoclonal antibodies can be used alone, or they can be used to deliver drugs, toxins, or radioactive material directly to the tumor.

monocyte: A type of white blood cell.

morphology: The science of the form and structure of organisms (plants, animals, and other forms of life).

morphine: A narcotic drug used in the treatment of pain.

MRI: Magnetic resonance imaging (mag-NET-ik REZ-o- nans IM-a-jing). A procedure in which a magnet linked to a computer is used to create detailed pictures of areas inside the body.

mucin/peptide : A protein/sugar compound made by some cancer cells.

mucositis: A complication of some cancer therapies in which the lining of the digestive system becomes inflamed. Often seen as sores in the mouth.

mucus: A thick, slippery fluid produced by the membranes that line certain organs of the body, including the nose, mouth, throat, and vagina.

muJ591 monoclonal antibody: A type of monoclonal antibody used in cancer detection or therapy. Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-produced substances that can locate and bind to cancer cells.

multidrug resistance: Adaptation of tumor cells to anticancer drugs in ways that make the drugs less effective.

multidrug resistance inhibition: Treatment used to make cancer cells less resistant to anticancer drugs.

multimodality treatment: Therapy that combines more than one method of treatment.

multiple myeloma (mye-eh-LO-ma): Cancer that arises in plasma cells, a type of white blood cell.

muromonab-CD3 monoclonal antibody: A type of monoclonal antibody used in cancer detection or therapy. Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-produced substances that can locate and bind to cancer cells.

mutations: Changes in the structure of genes. A mutation may be inherited or caused by an environmental exposure. Certain changes may lead to cancer or other diseases. Also called a gene alteration.

mycophenolate mofetil: A drug that is being studied for its effectiveness in preventing graft-versus-host disease and autoimmune disorders.

mycosis fungoides (mye-KO-sis fun-GOY-deez): A type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma that first appears on the skin and can spread to the lymph nodes or other organs such as the spleen, liver, or lungs.

mycostatin: A drug that treats infections caused by fungi.

myelin (MYE-eh-lin): The fatty substance that covers and protects nerves.

myelodysplasia: Abnormal bone marrow cells that may lead to myelogenous leukemia.

myelodysplastic syndrome (MYE-eh-lo-dis-PLAS-tik SIN-drome): Disease in which the bone marrow does not function normally. Also called preleukemia or smoldering leukemia.

myelofibrosis: A disorder in which the bone marrow is replaced by fibrous tissue.

myelogenous (mye-eh-LAH-jen-us): Produced by or originating in the bone marrow.

myelogram (MYE-eh-lo-gram): An x-ray of the spinal cord following an injection of dye into the space between the lining of the spinal cord and brain.

myeloid (MYE-eh-loyd): Pertaining to, derived from, or manifesting certain features of the bone marrow. In some cases also pertains to certain types of non-lymphocyte white blood cells found in the bone marrow, including granulocyte, monocyte, and platelet lineages. Also called myelogenous.

myeloma: Cancer that arises in plasma cells, a type of white blood cell.

myeloproliferative disorders: Diseases in which too many blood cells are made in the bone marrow.

myelosuppressive therapy: Treatment that inhibits blood cell production.

myometrium (mye-o-MEE-tree-um): The muscular outer layer of the uterus.

N-acetyl cysteine: An antioxidant drug that may keep cancer cells from developing or reduce the risk of growth of existing cancer.

nasopharynx (NAY-zo-fair-inks): The upper part of the throat behind the nose. An opening on each side of the nasopharynx leads into the ear.

neck dissection (dye-SEK-shun): Surgery to remove lymph nodes and other tissues in the neck.

needle biopsy: The removal of tissue or fluid with a needle for examination under a microscope. Also called a fine-needle aspiration.

negative axillary lymph nodes: Lymph nodes in the armpit that are free of cancer.

nelfinavir mesylate: A drug that interferes with the ability of a virus to make copies of itself.

neoadjuvant therapy: Treatment given before the primary treatment. Neoadjuvant therapy can be chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or hormone therapy.

neoplasia (NEE-o-PLAY-zha): Abnormal and uncontrolled cell growth.

neoplasm: A new growth of benign or malignant tissue.

neoplastic meningitis: Tumor cells that have spread from the original (primary) tumor to the tissue that covers the brain and/or spinal cord.

nephrectomy (nef-REK-toe-mee): Surgery to remove the kidney. Radical nephrectomy removes the kidney, the adrenal gland, nearby lymph nodes, and other surrounding tissue. Simple nephrectomy removes only the kidney. Partial nephrectomy removes the tumor, but not the entire kidney.

nephrotomogram (nef-ro-TOE-mo-gram): A series of x-rays of the kidneys. The x-rays are taken from different angles. They show the kidneys clearly, without the shadows of the organs around them.

neuroblastoma: Cancer that arises in immature nerve cells and that affects mostly infants and children.

neuroectodermal tumor: A tumor of the central or peripheral nervous systems.

neuroendocrine: Refers to the nervous system and the endocrine system (and the hormones produced by the endocrine glands).

neurologist (noo-ROL-o-jist): A doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the nervous system.

neuroma (noo-RO-ma): A tumor that arises in nerve cells.

neuropathy: A general term that refers to changes in the peripheral nervous system.

neurosurgeon (NOO-ro-SER-jun): A doctor who specializes in surgery on the brain, spine, and other parts of the nervous system.

neurotoxicity: The tendency of some treatments to cause damage to the nervous system.

neutropenia: An abnormal decrease in the number of neutrophils, a type of white blood cell.

neutrophil (NOO-tro-fil): A type of white blood cell.

nevus (NEE-vus): A benign growth on the skin, such as a mole. A mole is a cluster of melanocytes and surrounding supportive tissue that usually appears as a tan, brown, or flesh-colored spot on the skin. The plural of nevus is nevi (NEE-vye).

NG-monomethyl-L-arginine: An amino acid derivative used to counteract high blood pressure caused by interleukin-2.

niacinamide: A vitamin. It is being studied to increase the effect of radiation therapy on tumor cells. Also called nicotinamide.

nimodipine: Belongs to a family of drugs called calcium channel blockers. It is being investigated for use with anticancer drugs to prevent or overcome drug resistance and improve response to chemotherapy.

nipple discharge: Fluid coming from the nipple.

nitrocamptothecin: An alkaloid drug belonging to a class of anticancer agents called topoisomerase inhibitors.

nitrosoureas (nye-TRO-so-yoo-REE-ahz): A Network of anticancer drugs that can cross the blood-brain barrier. Carmustine and lomustine are nitrosoureas.

node-negative: Cancer that has not spread to the lymph nodes.

nolatrexed: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called thymidylate synthase inhibitors. Also called AG337.

non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma: A Network of cancers of the lymphoid system, including acute lymphoblastic leukemia, B cell lymphoma, Burkitt’s lymphoma, diffuse cell lymphoma, follicular lymphoma, immunoblastic large cell lymphoma, lymphoblastic lymphoma, mantle cell lymphoma, mycosis fungoides, post-transplantation lymphoproliferative disorder, small non-cleaved cell lymphoma, and T-cell lymphoma.

nonmelanoma skin cancer: Skin cancer that arises in basal cells or squamous cells but not in melanocytes (pigment producing cells of the skin).

nonmelanomatous: Skin cancer that arises in basal cells or squamous cells but not in melanocytes (pigment producing cells of the skin).

nonmetastatic: Cancer that has not spread from the primary (original) site to other sites in the body.

nonseminoma (non-sem-ih-NO-ma): A Network of testicular cancers that begin in the germ cells (cells that give rise to sperm). Nonseminomas are identified by the type of cell they begin in and include embryonal carcinoma, teratoma, choriocarcinoma, and yolk sac carcinoma.

nonsmall cell lung cancer: A Network of lung cancers that includes squamous cell carcinoma, adenocarcinoma, and large cell carcinoma.

novobiocin: An antibiotic drug used to treat infection.

NR-LU-10 antigen: A protein found on the surface of some cancers.

NSAIDs: Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. A Network of drugs that decrease swelling, pain, and redness.

nystatin: A drug that treats infections caused by fungi.

O(6)-benzylguanine: A drug that may improve the response of cancer cells to chemotherapy.

oat cell cancer: A type of lung cancer in which the cells look like oats when viewed under a microscope. Also called small cell lung cancer.

observation: The person’s condition is closely monitored, but treatment does not begin until symptoms appear or change. Also called watchful waiting.

octreotide: A drug similar to the naturally-occurring growth hormone inhibitor somatostatin. Octreotide is used to treat diarrhea and flushing associated with certain types of tumors.

ofloxacin: An antibiotic drug used to treat infection.

oligodendroglial tumors: Rare, slow-growing tumors that begin in brain cells called oligodendrocytes, which provide support and nourishment for cells that transmit nerve impulses. Also called oligodendroglioma.

oligodendroglioma (OL-ih-go-den-dro-glee-O-ma): A rare, slow-growing tumor that begins in brain cells called oligodendrocytes, which provide support and nourishment for cells that transmit nerve impulses. Also called oligodendroglial tumor.

oltipraz: A drug used in cancer prevention.

omega-3 fatty acid: A type of fat obtained in the diet and involved in immunity.

omeprazole: A drug that inhibits gastric acid secretion.

Ommaya reservoir (o-MYE-a REZ-er-vwahr): A device surgically placed under the scalp and used to deliver anticancer drugs to the fluid surrounding the brain and spinal cord.

oncogene: A gene that normally directs cell growth. If altered, it can promote or allow the uncontrolled growth of cancer. Alterations can be inherited or caused by an environmental exposure to carcinogens.

oncologist (on-KOL-o-jist): A doctor who specializes in treating cancer.

oncology: The study of cancer.

oncology nurse: A nurse who specializes in treating and caring for people who have cancer.

ondansetron: A drug that prevents or reduces nausea and vomiting.

ONYX-015: A modified cold virus that selectively grows in and destroys certain types of cancer cells and leaves normal cells undamaged.

oophorectomy (o-o-for-EK-toe-mee): Surgery to remove one or both ovaries.

ophthalmoscope (off-THAL-mo-skope): A lighted instrument used to examine the inside of the eye, including the retina and the optic nerve.

optic nerve: The nerve that carries messages from the retina to the brain.

oral surgeon: A dentist with special training in surgery of the mouth and jaw.

orchiectomy (or-kee-EK-toe-mee): Surgery to remove one or both testicles.

organisms: Plants, animals, and other forms of life.

oropharynx (or-o-FAIR-inks): The middle part of the throat that includes the soft palate, the base of the tongue, and the tonsils.

osteolytic: Causing the breakdown of bone.

osteoporosis (os-tea-oh-pa-ROW-sis): A condition that is characterized by a decrease in bone mass and density, causing bones to become fragile.

osteosarcoma (AHS-tee-o-sar-KO-ma): A cancer of the bone that affects primarily children and adolescents. Also called osteogenic sarcoma.

ostomy (AHS-toe-mee): A surgically created opening from an area inside the body to the outside. Colostomy and urostomy are types of ostomies. Also called stoma.

otolaryngologist (AH-toe-lar-in-GOL-o-jist): A doctor who specializes in treating diseases of the ear, nose, and throat.

ovarian ablation: Surgery, radiation therapy, or a drug treatment to stop the functioning of the ovaries. also called ovarian suppression.

ovaries (O-vahr-eez): The pair of female reproductive glands in which the ova, or eggs, are formed. The ovaries are located in the pelvis, one on each side of the uterus.

overexpress: An excess of a particular protein on the surface of a cell.

oxaliplatin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called platinum compounds.

OXi-104: An anticancer drug being evaluated in combination with cisplatin.

P-30 protein: An anticancer drug that may inhibit cancer cell growth.

p53 gene: A tumor suppressor gene that normally inhibits the growth of tumors. This gene is altered in many types of cancer.

paclitaxel: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called mitotic inhibitors.

Paget’s disease of the nipple: A form of breast cancer in which the tumor grows from ducts beneath the nipple onto the surface of the nipple. Symptoms commonly include itching and burning and an eczema-like condition around the nipple, sometimes accompanied by oozing or bleeding.

PALA: An anticancer drug that is being studied to increase the effectiveness of the chemotherapy drug fluorouracil.

palate (PAL-et): The roof of the mouth. The front portion is bony (hard palate), and the back portion is muscular (soft palate).

palliative therapy: Treatment given to relieve symptoms caused by advanced cancer. Palliative therapy does not alter the course of a disease, but improves the quality of life.

palpation: Examination by pressing on the surface of the body to feel the organs or tissues underneath.

pamidronate: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called bisphosphonates. Pamidronate is used as treatment for abnormally high levels of calcium in the blood.

Pancoast tumor: Non-small cell lung cancer that originates in the upper portion of the lung and extends to other nearby tissues such as the ribs and vertebrae. Also called a pulmonary sulcus tumor.

pancreas: A glandular organ located in the abdomen. It makes pancreatic juices, and it produces several hormones, including insulin. The pancreas is surrounded by the stomach, intestines, and other organs.

pancreatectomy (pan-kree-a-TEK-toe- mee): Surgery to remove the pancreas. In a total pancreatectomy, a portion of the stomach, the duodenum, common bile duct, gallbladder, spleen, and nearby lymph nodes also are removed.

pancreatic enzymes: A Network of proteins secreted by the pancreas which aid in digestion of food.

pancreatic juices: Fluids made by the pancreas. Pancreatic juices contain proteins called enzymes that aid in digestion.

Pap test: The collection of cells from the cervix for examination under a microscope. It is used to detect changes that may be cancer or may lead to cancer, and can show noncancerous conditions, such as infection or inflammation. Also called a Pap smear.

papillary tumor (PAP-ih-lar-ee tOO-mer): A tumor shaped like a small mushroom with its stem attached to the epithelial layer (inner lining) of an organ.

papilledema (pap-il-eh-DEE-ma): Swelling around the optic disk.

paracentesis: Insertion of a thin needle or tube into the abdomen to remove fluid from the peritoneal cavity.

paralysis (pa-RAL-ih-sis): Loss of ability to move all or part of the body.

paraneoplastic syndrome (pair-a-nee-o-PLAS-tik): A Network of symptoms that may develop when substances released by some cancer cells disrupt the normal function of surrounding cells and tissue.

paroxetine hydrocholoride: An antidepressant drug.

partial remission: The shrinking, but not complete disappearance, of a tumor in response to therapy. Also called partial response.

partial response: The shrinking, but not complete disappearance, of a tumor in response to therapy. Also called partial remission.

pathologic fracture: A broken bone caused by disease, often by metastases to the bone.

pathologist (pa-THOL-o-jist): A doctor who identifies diseases by studying cells and tissues under a microscope.

peau d’orange: A dimpled condition of the skin of the breast, resembling the skin of an orange, sometimes found in inflammatory breast cancer.

pediatric (pee-dee-AT-rik): Pertaining to children.

pegaspargase: A modified form of asparaginase, an anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs derived from enzymes.

PEG-interferon alfa-2B: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called biological response modifiers.
PEG-interferon alfa-2B is a cytokine. Also called SCH 54031.

PEG-MGDF: A synthetic form of a protein that is normally made in the body to regulate the production of platelets.

peldesine: An anticancer drug.

pelvis: The lower part of the abdomen, located between the hip bones.

penclomedine: Penclomedine is an anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

penicillamine: A drug that removes copper from the body and is used to treat diseases in which there is an excess of this metal. It is also being studied as a possible angiogenesis inhibitor in brain tumors.

penicillin: An antibiotic drug used to treat infection.

pentetic acid calcium: A drug that protects healthy tissues from the toxic effects of anticancer drugs.

pentosan polysulfate: A drug used to relieve pain or discomfort associated with chronic inflammation of the bladder. It is also being evaluated for its protective effects on the gastrointestinal tract in people receiving radiation therapy.

pentostatin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

pentoxifylline: A drug used to prevent blood clotting and as a treatment that may help reduce weight loss in people with cancer.

peptide: Any compound consisting of two or more amino acids, the building blocks of proteins. Peptides are combined to make proteins.

peptide 946: A protein that causes white blood cells to recognize and destroy melanoma cells.

percutaneous transhepatic cholangiography (per-kyoo-TAN-ee-us trans-heh-PAT-ik ko-LAN-jee-AH-gra-fee): A procedure to x-ray the hepatic and common bile ducts. A contrasting agent is injected into the liver or bile duct, and the ducts are then x-rayed to find the point of obstruction. Also called PTC.

perfusion: Bathing an organ or tissue with a fluid. In regional perfusion, a specific area of the body (usually an arm or a leg) receives high doses of anticancer drugs through a blood vessel. Such a procedure is performed to treat cancer that has not spread.

pericardial effusion: An abnormal collection of fluid inside the membrane that covers the heart.

perifosine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylphospholipids.

perillyl alcohol: A drug used in cancer prevention that belongs to the family of plant drugs called monoterpenes.

perimenopausal: The time of a woman’s life when menstrual periods become irregular. Refers to the time near menopause.

perineal prostatectomy (peh-rih-NEE-al pros-ta-TEK-toe-mee): Surgery to remove the prostate through an incision made between the scrotum and the anus.

peripheral blood: Blood circulating throughout the body.

peripheral stem cell support (per-IF-er-al): A method of replacing blood-forming cells destroyed by cancer treatment. Immature blood cells (stem cells) in the circulating blood that are similar to those in the bone marrow are removed from the person’s blood before treatment. The cells are given back to the person after treatment. Also called peripheral stem cell transplantation.

peripheral stem cell transplantation (per-IF-er-al): A method of replacing blood-forming cells destroyed by cancer treatment. Immature blood cells (stem cells) in the circulating blood that are similar to those in the bone marrow are given to the person after treatment to help the bone marrow recover and continue producing healthy blood cells. Transplantation may be autologous (the person’s blood cells saved earlier), allogeneic (blood cells donated by someone else), or syngeneic (blood cells donated by an identical twin). Also called peripheral stem cell support.

peripheral stem cells: Immature cells found circulating in the bloodstream. New blood cells develop from peripheral stem cells.

peristalsis (pair-ih-STAL-sis): The rippling motion of muscles in the intestine or other tubular organs characterized by the alternate contraction and relaxation of the muscles that propel the contents onward.

peritoneal cavity: The space within the abdomen that contains the intestines, the stomach, and the liver. It is bound by thin membranes.

peritoneal perfusion: A method of delivering fluids and drugs directly to tumors in the peritoneal cavity.

peritoneum (PAIR-ih-toe-NEE-um): The tissue that lines the abdominal wall and covers most of the organs in the abdomen.

pernicious anemia (per-NISH-us a-NEE- mee-a): A type of anemia (low red blood cell count) caused by a lack of vitamin B12.

PET scan: Positron emission tomography scan. A computerized image of the metabolic activity of the body tissues used to determine the presence of disease.

petechiae (peh-TEE-kee-a): Pinpoint, unraised, round red spots under the skin caused by bleeding.

pharynx (FAIR-inks): The hollow tube about 5 inches long that starts behind the nose and ends at the top of the trachea (windpipe) and esophagus (the tube that goes to the stomach).

phase I trial: Phase I trials are the first step in testing a new treatment in humans. In these studies, researchers look for the best way to give a new treatment (for example, by mouth, IV drip, or injection), and the best dose. The drug is usually given in progressively higher doses to determine the highest dose that does not cause harmful side effects. Because little is known about the possible risks and benefits of treatments being tested, phase I trials usually include only a limited number of patients who have not been helped by other known treatments.

phase I/II trial: A trial to study the safety, dosage levels, and response to a new treatment.

phase II trial: Phase II trials focus on learning whether the new treatment has an anticancer effect (for example, whether it shrinks a tumor, or improves blood test results), and whether it is effective for a particular type of cancer.

phase II/III trial: A trial to study response to a new treatment and the effectiveness of the treatment compared to the standard treatment regimen.

phase III trial: Phase III trials compare the results of people taking the new treatment with results of people taking standard treatment (for example, which Network has better survival rates, and/or fewer side effects). In most cases, studies move into phase III testing only after a treatment shows promise in phases I and II. Phase III trials may include hundreds of people around the country.

phase IV trial: Once a treatment has been approved and is being marketed, it is studied in a phase IV trial to evaluate side effects of the new treatment that were not apparent in the phase III trial. Thousands of people are involved in a phase IV trial.

phenobarbital: A sedative/anticonvulsant barbiturate that has been used to treat diarrhea and to increase the antitumor effect of other therapies.

phenylbutyrate: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called differentiating agents.

photodynamic therapy (fo-toe-dye-NAM-ik): Treatment with drugs that become active when exposed to light and kill cancer cells.

photofrin: A drug used in photodynamic therapy that is absorbed by tumor cells; when absorbed by cancer cells and exposed to light, it becomes active and kills the cancer cells.

photosensitizer: A drug used in photodynamic therapy. When absorbed by cancer cells and exposed to light, the drug becomes active and kills the cancer cells.

phyllodes tumor: Rare, benign or malignant tumors of the breast.

physiologic: Related to the functions of the body. When used in the phrase “physiologic age,” it refers to an age assigned by general health, as opposed to the calendar age.

pigment: A substance that gives color to tissue. Pigments are responsible for the color of skin, eyes, and hair.

pilocarpine: An alkaloid used to increase salivation in people who have dry mouth. Dry mouth can be caused by opioids or radiation therapy.

pilot study: The initial study examining a new method or treatment.

pineal gland (PIN-ee-al): A small gland located in the cerebrum that produces melatonin. Also called pineal body or pineal organ.

pineal region tumors (pIN-ee-al…TOO-mers): Types of brain tumors that occur in or around the pineal gland, a tiny organ near the center of the brain.

pineoblastoma (PIN-ee-o-blas-TOE-ma): A fast growing type of brain tumor that occurs in or around the pineal gland, a tiny organ near the center of the brain.

pineocytoma (PIN-ee-o-sye-TOE-ma): A slow growing type of brain tumor that occurs in or around the pineal gland, a tiny organ near the center of the brain.

piperacillin-tazobactam: A combination of antibiotics used to fight infections in people who have cancer; both of these drugs are derived from penicillin.

piritrexim: An anticancer drug.

pituitary gland (pih-TOO-ih-tair-ee): The main endocrine gland; it produces hormones that control other glands and many body functions, especially growth.

placebo: An inactive substance that looks the same as, and is administered in the same way as, a drug in a clinical trial.

plasma (PLAS-ma): The clear, yellowish, fluid portion of the blood in which cells are suspended.

plasma cells: A type of white blood cell that produces antibodies.

plasmacytoma (PLAS-ma-sye-TOE-ma): A tumor that is made up of cancerous plasma cells.

plasmapheresis (plas-ma-fer-EE-sis): The process of separating certain cells from the plasma in the blood by a machine. Only the cells are returned to the person. Plasmapheresis can be used to remove excess antibodies from the blood.

plastic surgeon: A surgeon who specializes in reducing scarring or disfigurement that may occur as a result of accidents, birth defects, or treatment for diseases.

platelets (PLAYT-lets): A type of blood cell that helps prevent bleeding by causing blood clots to form. Also called thrombocytes.

platinum: A metal that is an important component of some anticancer drugs, such as cisplatin and carboplatin.

pleura (PLOOR-a): A thin layer of tissue covering the lungs and the wall of the chest cavity to protect and cushion the lungs. A small amount of fluid that acts as a lubricant allows the lungs to move smoothly in the chest cavity during breathing.

pleural cavity: A space enclosed by the pleura (thin tissue covering the lungs and lining the interior wall of the chest cavity). It is bound by thin membranes.

pleural effusion: An abnormal collection of fluid between the thin layers of tissue (pleura) lining the lung and the wall of the chest cavity.

pM-81 monoclonal antibody: A type of monoclonal antibody used in cancer detection or therapy. Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-produced substances that can locate and bind to cancer cells.

pneumatic larynx (noo-MAT-ik LAIR- inks): A device that uses air to produce sound to help a laryngectomee talk.

pneumonectomy (noo-mo-NEK-toe-mee): An operation to remove an entire lung.

pneumonia (noo-MONE-ya): An inflammatory infection that occurs in the lung.

polyp (POL-ip): A growth that protrudes from a mucous membrane.

polyposis: The development of numerous polyps (growths that protrudes from a mucous membrane).

porfimer sodium: An anticancer drug that is also used in cancer prevention. It belongs to the family of drugs called photosensitizing agents.

porfiromycin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called anticancer antibiotics.

positive axillary lymph nodes: Lymph nodes in the area of the armpit (axilla) to which cancer has spread. This is determined by surgically removing some of the lymph nodes and examining them under a microscope to see whether cancer cells are present.

positron emission tomography scan: PET scan. A computerized image of the metabolic activity of body tissues used to determine the presence of disease.

postmenopausal: Refers to the time in life after menopause. Menopause is the time in a woman’s life when menstrual periods stop for at least a year; also called “change of life.”

postremission therapy: Anticancer drugs to kill cancer cells that survive after remission induction therapy.

precancerous (pre-KAN-ser-us): A term used to describe a condition that may or is likely to become cancer. Also called premalignant.

precancerous polyps (pre-KAN-ser-us pOL-ips): Growths that protrude from a mucous membrane. Precancerous polyps may or are likely to become cancer.

prednisolone: A synthetic corticosteroid used in the treatment of blood cell cancers (leukemias) and lymph system cancers (lymphomas).

prednisone: Belongs to the family of drugs called steroids. It is used to treat several types of cancer. Prednisone also inhibits the body’s immune response.

preleukemia (PREE-loo-KEE-mee-a): Disease in which the bone marrow does not function normally. Also called myelodysplastic syndrome or smoldering leukemia.

premalignant: A term used to describe a condition that may or is likely to become cancer. Also called precancerous.

premenopausal: Refers to the time in life before menopause. Menopause is the time of life when a women’s menstrual periods stop for at least a year; also called “change of life.”

primary central nervous system lymphoma: Cancer that arises in the lymphoid tissue found in the central nervous system (CNS). The CNS includes the brain, spinal cord, and meninges.

primary tumor: The original tumor.

primitive neuroectodermal tumors (NOO-ro-ek-toe-DER-mul): PNET. A type of bone cancer that forms in the middle (shaft) of large bones. Also called Ewing’s sarcoma/primitive neuroectodermal tumor.

procarbazine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

proctoscopy (prok-TOS -ko-pee): An examination of the rectum using a thin, lighted tube called a proctoscope.

proctosigmoidoscopy (PROK-toe-sig-moid-OSS-ko-pee): An examination of the rectum and the lower part of the colon using a thin, lighted tube called a sigmoidoscope.

progesterone (pro-JES-ter-own): A female hormone.

progesterone receptor negative (PR-): Breast cancer cells that do not have a protein (receptor molecule) to which progesterone will attach. Breast cancer cells that are PR- do not need the hormone progesterone to grow and usually do not respond to hormonal therapy.

progesterone receptor positive (PR+): Breast cancer cells that have a protein (receptor molecule) to which progesterone will attach. Breast cancer cells that are PR+ need the hormone progesterone to grow and will usually respond to hormonal therapy.

prognosis (prog-NO-sis): The likely outcome or course of a disease; the chance of recovery.

progressive disease: Cancer that is increasing in scope or severity.

promegapoietin: A colony-stimulating factor that stimulates the production of blood cells, especially platelets. It is given during chemotherapy to increase blood cell regeneration. It is a cytokine that belongs to the family of drugs called hematopoietic (blood forming) agents.

promyelocytic leukemia: A type of acute myeloid leukemia, a quickly progressing disease in which too many immature blood-forming cells are found in the blood and bone marrow.

prophylactic cranial irradiation (pro-fih-LAK-tik KRAY-nee-ul ir-ray-dee-AY-shun): Radiation therapy to the head to reduce the risk that cancer will spread to the brain.

prophylaxis: An attempt to prevent disease.

Prost 30 monoclonal antibody: A type of monoclonal antibody used in cancer detection or therapy. Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-produced substances that can locate and bind to cancer cells.

prostate gland (PROS-tate): A gland in the male reproductive system just below the bladder. It surrounds part of the urethra, the canal that empties the bladder. It produces a fluid that forms part of semen.

prostate-specific antigen: PSA. A substance that may be found in an increased amount in the blood of men who have prostate cancer or benign prostatic hyperplasia.

prostatectomy (pros-ta-TEK-toe-mee): An operation to remove part or all of the prostate. Radical (or total) prostatectomy is the removal of the entire prostate and some of the tissue around it.

prostatic acid phosphatase (FOS-fa-tays): PAP. An enzyme produced by the prostate. It may be found in increased amount in men who have prostate cancer.

prosthesis (pros-THEE-sis): An artificial replacement of a part of the body.

prosthodontist (pros-tho-DON-tist): A dentist with special training in making replacements for missing teeth or other structures of the oral cavity to restore the person’s appearance, comfort, and/or health.

protease inhibitors: Drugs that interfere with the ability of a virus to make copies of itself.

proteins (PRO-teenz): Substances that are essential to the body’s structure and proper functioning.

PSC 833: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called cyclosporine analogues. It is used with chemotherapy to prevent or overcome the resistance of tumor cells to some anticancer drugs.

PTC: Percutaneous transhepatic cholangiography (per-kyoo-TAN-ee-us trans-heh-PAT-ik ko-LAN-jee-AH-gra-fee). A procedure to x-ray the bile ducts. In this procedure a dye is injected through a thin needle inserted through the skin into the liver or the gallbladder, and an x-ray picture is taken.

PTK787/ZK 222584: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors.

pulmonary: Refers to the lungs.

pump: A device that is used to deliver a precise amount of drug at a specific rate.

pyrazine diazohydroxide: An anticancer drug.

pyrazoloacridine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called acridines.

QS21: A plant extract that may improve the ability of the immune system to respond to disease. It is being studied in combination with vaccine therapy.

quadrantectomy: Surgical removal of the region of the breast (approximately one quarter) containing the cancer.

quality of life: The overall enjoyment of life. Many clinical trials measure aspects of a person’s sense of well-being and ability to perform various tasks in order to assess the effects that cancer and its treatment have on the person.

R115777: An anticancer drug that inhibits the transformation of normal cells to cancer cells. It belongs to the family of drugs called enzyme inhibitors.

radiation fibrosis (ray-dee-AY-shun fye-BRO-sis): The formation of scar tissue as a result of radiation therapy.

radiation oncologist (ray-dee-AY-shun on-KOL-o-jist): A doctor who specializes in using radiation to treat cancer.

radiation surgery: A radiation therapy technique that delivers radiation directly to the tumor while sparing the healthy tissue. Also called radiosurgery and stereotactic external beam irradiation.

radiation therapy (ray-dee-AY-shun): Radiation therapy (also called radiotherapy) uses high-energy radiation from x-rays, neutrons, and other sources to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. Radiation may come from a machine outside the body (external-beam radiation therapy) or from materials (radioisotopes) that produce radiation that are placed in or near the tumor or in the area where the cancer cells are found (internal radiation therapy, implant radiation, or brachytherapy). Systemic radiation therapy involves giving a radioactive substance, such as a radiolabeled monoclonal antibody, that circulates throughout the body.

radical cystectomy (RAD-ih-kal sis-TEK-toe-mee): Surgery to remove the bladder as well as nearby tissues and organs.

radical mastectomy (RAD-ih-kal mas-TEK-toe-mee): Surgery to remove the breast, chest muscles, and all of the lymph nodes in the armpit. Also called the Halsted radical mastectomy.

radical prostatectomy (RAD-ih-kalpros-ta-TEK-toe-mee): Surgery to remove the entire prostate. The two types of radical prostatectomy are retropubic prostatectomy and perineal prostatectomy.

radioactive (RAY-dee-o-AK-tiv): Giving off radiation.

radioactive iodine: A radioactive form of the chemical element iodine often used for imaging tests or as a treatment for cancer.

radioimmunoguided surgery: A procedure that uses radiolabeled substances to detect tumors for surgical removal.

radioimmunotherapy: Treatment with a radioactive substance that is linked to an antibody that will attach to the tumor when injected into the body.

radioisotope: An unstable element that releases radiation as it breaks down. Radioisotopes can be used in imaging tests or as a treatment for cancer.

radiolabeled: Any compound that has been joined with a radioactive substance.

radiologist (RAY-dee-ol-o-jist): A doctor who specializes in creating and interpreting pictures of areas inside the body. The pictures are produced with x-rays, sound waves, or other types of energy.

radiology: The use of radiation, such as x-rays, or other imaging technologies, such as ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging, to diagnose or treat disease.

radionuclide scanning: A test that produces pictures (scans) of internal parts of the body. The person is given an injection or swallows a small amount of radioactive material. A machine called a scanner then measures the radioactivity in certain organs.

radiopharmaceuticals: Drugs containing a radioactive substance that are used in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer and in pain management of bone metastases. Also called radioactive drugs.

radiosensitization: The use of a drug that makes tumor cells more sensitive to radiation therapy.

radiosensitizers: Drugs that make tumor cells more sensitive to radiation.

radon (RAY-don): A radioactive gas that is released by uranium, a substance found in soil and rock. When too much radon is breathed in, it can damage lung cells and lead to lung cancer.

raloxifene: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs). It is used in the prevention of osteoporosis in postmenopausal women. Raloxifene is also being studied as a cancer prevention drug.

ralitrexed: An anticancer drug that inhibits tumor cells from multiplying by interfering with cells’ ability to make DNA. Also called ICI D1694.

randomized clinical trial: A study in which participants are assigned by chance to separate Networks that compare different treatments. Neither the researcher nor the participant can choose the Network. Using chance to assign people means that the Networks will be similar and the treatments they receive can be compared. At the time of the trial, there is no way for the researchers to know which of the treatments is best. It is the person’s choice to be in a randomized trial or not.

ras gene: A gene that has been found to cause cancer when it is altered (mutated). Agents that block its activity may stop the growth of cancer. A ras peptide is a protein fragment produced by the ras gene.

rebeccamycin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antineoplastic antibiotics.

rectum: The last 8 to 10 inches of the large intestine.

recur: To occur again. Recurrence is the return of cancer, at the same site as the original (primary) tumor or in another location, after it had disappeared.

recurrence: The return of cancer, at the same site as the original (primary) tumor or in another location, after it had disappeared.

recurrent cancer: Cancer that has returned, at the same site as the original (primary) tumor or in another location, after it had disappeared.

red blood cells: RBCs. Cells that carry oxygen to all parts of the body. Also called erythrocytes.

Reed-Sternberg cell: A type of cell that appears in people with Hodgkin’s disease. The number of these cells increases as the disease advances.

reflux: The term used when liquid backs up into the esophagus from the stomach.

refractory cancer: Cancer that has not responded to treatment.

regimen: A treatment plan that specifies the dosage, the schedule, and the duration of treatment.

regional cancer: Refers to cancer that has grown beyond the original (primary) tumor to nearby lymph nodes and/or organs and tissues.

regional chemotherapy (kee-mo-THER-a-pee): Treatment with anticancer drugs that is directed to a specific area.

regression: A decrease in the extent or size of cancer.

relapse: The return of signs and symptoms of cancer after a period of improvement.

remission: Disappearance of the signs and symptoms of cancer. When this happens, the disease is said to be “in remission.” A remission may be temporary or permanent.

remission induction therapy: The initial chemotherapy a person receives to bring about a remission.

renal capsule: The fibrous connective tissue that surrounds each kidney.

renal cell cancer: Cancer that develops in the lining of the renal tubules, which filter the blood and produce urine.

renal pelvis: The area at the center of the kidney. Urine collects here and is funneled into the ureter, the tube that connects the kidney to the bladder.

reproductive cells: Egg and sperm cells. Each mature reproductive cell carries a single set of 23 chromosomes.

reproductive system: In women, this system includes the ovaries, the fallopian tubes, the uterus (womb), the cervix, and the vagina (birth canal). The reproductive system in men includes the prostate, the testes, and the penis.

resected: Surgical removal of part of an organ.

resection (ree-SEK-shun): Surgical removal of part of an organ.

residual disease: Cancer cells that remain after attempts have been made to remove the cancer.

respiratory system (RES-pih-ra-tor-ee): The organs that are involved in breathing. These include the nose, throat, larynx, trachea, bronchi, and lungs.

respiratory therapy (RES-pih-ra-tor-ee): Exercises and treatments that help improve or restore lung function.

retinoblastoma: An eye cancer that most often occurs in children under the age of 5. It occurs in hereditary and nonhereditary (sporadic) forms.

retinoid: Vitamin A or a vitamin A-like compound.

retinol: Vitamin A. It is essential for proper vision, healthy skin and mucous membranes. Retinol is being studied for cancer prevention; it belongs to the family of drugs called retinoids.

retinyl palmitate: A drug being studied in cancer prevention; it belongs to the family of drugs called retinoids.

retropubic prostatectomy (re-tro-PYOO-bik pros-ta-TEK-toe-mee): Surgery to remove the prostate through an incision made in the abdominal wall.

retroviral vector: RNA from a virus that is used to insert genetic material into cells.

RevM10 gene: An antiviral gene being studied for treatment of cancer in patients who have HIV, the AIDS virus.

rhabdoid tumor: A malignant tumor of either the central nervous system (CNS) or the kidney. Malignant rhabdoid tumors of the CNS often have an abnormality of chromosome 22. These tumors usually occur in children younger than 2 years old.

rhabdomyosarcoma: A malignant tumor of muscle tissue.

rhizoxin: An anticancer drug isolated from a fungus. It is similar to the family of drugs called vinca alkaloids.

ribonucleic acid: RNA. One of the two nucleic acids found in all cells. The other is deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA). Ribonucleic acid transfers genetic information from DNA to proteins produced by the cell.

risk factor: Anything that increases the chance of developing a disease.

ritonavir: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called protease inhibitors. It interferes with the ability of a virus to make copies of itself.

rituximab: A type of monoclonal antibody used in cancer detection or therapy. Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-produced substances that can locate and bind to cancer cells.

RMP-7: A drug that may allow anticancer drugs (such as carboplatin) to cross the blood-brain barrier and reach tumors in the brain.

RNA: Ribonucleic acid. One of the two nucleic acids found in all cells. The other is DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid). RNA transfers genetic information from DNA to proteins produced by the cell.

Ro 31-7453: An anticancer drug that may prevent cancer cells from dividing.

RPR 109881A: A drug that belongs to the family of anticancer drugs called taxanes.

RSR-13: A drug that may increase the effectiveness of radiation therapy.

saline: A solution of salt and water.

salivary glands (SAL-ih-vair-ee): Glands in the mouth that produce saliva.

salpingo-oophorectomy (sal-PIN-go o-o-for-EK-toe-mee): Surgical removal of the fallopian tubes and ovaries.

samarium 153: A radioactive substance used in cancer therapy.

saquinavir mesylate: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called protease inhibitors. It interferes with the ability of a virus to make copies of itself.

sarCNU: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

sarcoma: A cancer of the bone, cartilage, fat, muscle, blood vessels or other connective or supportive tissue.

sargramostim: A colony-stimulating factor that stimulates the production of blood cells, especially platelets, during chemotherapy. It is a cytokine that belongs to the family of drugs called hematopoietic (blood forming) agents. Also called GM-CSF.

SC-70935: A growth factor used to stimulate the production of blood cells during cancer chemotherapy.

scans: Pictures of structures inside the body. Scans often used in diagnosing, staging, and monitoring people include liver scans, bone scans, and computed tomography (CT) or computed axial tomography (CAT) scans and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans. In liver scanning and bone scanning, radioactive substances that are injected into the bloodstream collect in these organs. A scanner that detects the radiation is used to create pictures. In CT scanning, an x-ray machine linked to a computer is used to produce detailed pictures of organs inside the body. MRI scans use a large magnet connected to a computer to create pictures of areas inside the body.

SCH 54031: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called biological response modifiers. SCH 54031 is a cytokine. Also called PEG-interferon alfa-2b.

SCH-58500: A drug that inhibits the growth of tumor cells that express the mutated p53 gene.

SCH 66336: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called enzyme inhibitors.

Schiller test (SHIL-er): A test in which iodine is applied to the cervix. The iodine colors healthy cells brown; abnormal cells remain unstained, usually appearing white or yellow.

schwannoma (shwah-NO-ma): A type of benign brain tumor that begins in the Schwann cells that produce the myelin that protects the acoustic nerve (the nerve of hearing).

screening: Checking for disease when there are no symptoms.

scrotum (SKRO-tum): The external pouch of skin that contains the testicles.

sebum (SEE-bum): An oily substance produced by certain glands in the skin.

second cancer: Refers to a new primary cancer that is caused by previous cancer treatment, or a new primary cancer in a person with a history of cancer.

second-look surgery: Surgery performed after primary treatment to determine whether tumor cells remain.

secondary tumor: Cancer that has spread from the organ in which it first appeared to another organ. For example, breast cancer cells may spread (metastasize) to the lungs and cause the growth of a new tumor. When this happens, the disease is called metastatic breast cancer, and the tumor in the lungs is called a secondary tumor. Also called secondary cancer.

sedoxantrone trihydrochloride: An anticancer drug that belongs to a family of drugs called topoisomerase inhibitors. Also called CI-958.

segmental mastectomy (mas-TEK-toe-mee): The removal of the cancer as well as some of the breast tissue around the tumor and the lining over the chest muscles below the tumor. Usually some of the lymph nodes under the arm are also taken out. Sometimes called partial mastectomy.

seizures (SEE-zhurz): Convulsions; sudden, involuntary movements of the muscles.

semen: The fluid that is released through the penis during orgasm. Semen is made up of sperm from the testicles and fluid from the prostate and other sex glands.

seminal vesicles (SEM-in-al VES-ih-kulz): Glands that help produce semen.

seminoma (sem-in-O-ma): A type of testicular cancer that develops from the cells that give rise to sperm cells (germ cells).

semustine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

sentinel lymph node: The first lymph node that cancer is likely to spread to from the primary tumor. Cancer cells may appear first in the sentinel node before spreading to other lymph nodes.

sentinel lymph node biopsy: Procedure in which a dye or radioactive substance is injected near the tumor. This material flows into the sentinel lymph nodes(s) (the first lymph node(s) that cancer is likely to spread to from the primary tumor). A surgeon then looks for the dye or uses a scanner to find the sentinel lymph node(s) and removes it or them in order to check for the presence of tumor cells.

sequential treatment: One treatment after the other.

Sezary syndrome: A form of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma, a cancerous disease that affects the skin.

shave biopsy (BY-ahp-see): A procedure in which the parts of a mole that are above and just below the surface of the skin are removed with a small blade. There is no need for stitches with this procedure.

shunt: A surgically created diversion of fluid, for example blood or cerebrospinal fluid, from one area of the body to another area of the body.

sialyl Tn-KLH: A vaccine that is composed of a substance that enhances immunity plus an antigen found on some tumors of the colon, breast, lung, ovary, pancreas, and stomach.

side effects: Problems that occur when treatment affects healthy cells. Common side effects of cancer treatment are fatigue, nausea, vomiting, decreased blood cell counts, hair loss, and mouth sores.

sigmoidoscope (sig-MOY-da-skope): A thin, lighted tube used to view the inside of the colon.

sigmoidoscopy (sig-moid-OSS-ko-pee): Inspection of the lower colon using a thin, lighted tube called a sigmoidoscope. Samples of tissue or cells may by collected for examination under a microscope. Also called proctosigmoidoscopy.

sirolimus: A drug used to help prevent rejection of organ and bone marrow transplants by the body.

skin graft: Skin that is moved from one part of the body to another.

skin test: A test for an immune response to a compound by placing it on or under the skin.

small cell lung cancer: A type of lung cancer in which the cells appear small and round when viewed under the microscope. Also called oat cell lung cancer.

small intestine: The part of the digestive tract that is located between the stomach and the large intestine.

smoldering leukemia: Disease in which the bone marrow does not function normally. Also called preleukemia or myelodysplastic syndrome.

soft tissue: Refers to muscle, fat, fibrous tissue, blood vessels, or other supporting tissue of the body.

soft tissue sarcoma (TISH-oo sar-KO-ma): A sarcoma that begins in the muscle, fat, fibrous tissue, blood vessels, or other supporting tissue of the body.

solid tumor: Cancer of body tissues other than blood, bone marrow, or the lymphatic system.

somatic cells: All the body cells except the reproductive (germ) cells.

somatic mutations: Alterations in DNA that occur after conception. Somatic mutations can occur in any of the cells of the body except the germ cells (sperm and egg), and therefore are not passed on to children. These alterations can (but do not always) cause cancer or other diseases.

sonogram (SON-o-gram): A computer picture of areas inside the body created by bouncing sound waves off organs and other tissues. Also called ultrasonogram.

speculum (SPEK-yoo-lum): An instrument used to widen an opening of the body to make it easier to look inside.

speech pathologist (pa-THOL-o-jist): A specialist who evaluates and treats people with communication and swallowing problems. Also called a speech therapist.

sperm banking: Freezing sperm for use in the future. This procedure can allow men to father children after loss of fertility.

SPF: Sun protection factor. A scale for rating the level of sunburn protection in sunscreen products. The higher the SPF, the more sunburn protection it provides.

spinal tap: A test in which a fluid sample is removed from the spinal column with a thin needle. Also called a lumbar puncture.

spleen: An organ that is part of the lymphatic system. The spleen produces lymphocytes, filters the blood, stores blood cells, and destroys those that are aging. It is located on the left side of the abdomen near the stomach.

splenectomy (splen-EK-toe-mee): An operation to remove the spleen.

sputum: Mucus coughed up from the lungs.

squalamine lactate: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors. It prevents the growth of new blood vessels into a solid tumor.

squamous cell carcinoma (SKWAY-mus. . .kar-sin-O-ma): Cancer that begins in squamous cells, which are thin, flat cells resembling fish scales. Squamous cells are found in the tissue that forms the surface of the skin, the lining of the hollow organs of the body, and the passages of the respiratory and digestive tracts. Also called epidermoid carcinoma.

squamous cells (SKWAY-mus): Flat cells that look like fish scales under a microscope. These cells cover internal and external surfaces of the body.

squamous intraepithelial lesion (SKWAY-mus in-tra-eh-pih-THEEL-ee-ul LEE-zhun): SIL. A general term for the abnormal growth of squamous cells on the surface of the cervix. The changes in the cells are described as low grade or high grade, depending on how much of the cervix is affected and how abnormal the cells appear.

SR-29142: A drug that may protect healthy tissue from the toxic effects of anticancer drugs.

SR-45023A: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called bisphosphonates. It affects cancer cell receptors governing cell growth and death.

SR49059: An anticancer drug that inhibits a hormone growth factor responsible for stimulating some cancer cells to multiply.

stable disease: Cancer that is not decreasing or increasing in extent or severity.

stage: The extent of a cancer within the body, including whether the disease has spread from the original site to other parts of the body. Staging refers to the determination of the extent of cancer.

stage I adrenocortical cancer: The cancer is less than 5 centimeters (less than 2 inches) in size and has not spread into tissues around the adrenal gland.

stage II adrenocortical cancer: The cancer is more than 5 centimeters (less than 2 inches) in size and has not spread into tissues around the adrenal gland.

stage III adrenocortical cancer: The cancer has spread into tissues around the adrenal gland or has spread to the lymph nodes around the adrenal gland.

stage IV adrenocortical cancer: The cancer has spread to tissues or organs in the area and to lymph nodes around the adrenal cortex, or the cancer has spread to other parts of the body.

stage I anal cancer: The cancer has spread beyond the top layer of anal tissue and is smaller than 2 centimeters (less than 1 inch).

stage II anal cancer: Cancer has spread beyond the top layer of anal tissue and is larger than 2 centimeters (about 1 inch), but it has not spread to nearby organs or lymph nodes.

stage III anal cancer: Stage III anal cancer is divided into stage IIIA and III B. Stage IIIA anal cancer: cancer has spread to the lymph nodes around the rectum or to nearby organs such as the vagina or bladder. Stage IIIB: cancer has spread to the lymph nodes in the middle of the abdomen or in the groin, or the cancer has spread to both nearby organs and the lymph nodes around the rectum.

stage IIIA anal cancer: Cancer has spread to the lymph nodes around the rectum or to nearby organs such as the vagina or bladder.

stage IIIB anal cancer: Cancer has spread to the lymph nodes in the middle of the abdomen or in the groin, or the cancer has spread to both nearby organs and the lymph nodes around the rectum.

stage IV anal cancer: Cancer has spread to distant lymph nodes within the abdomen or to organs in other parts of the body.

stage I bladder cancer: Cancer cells have spread into the inner lining of the bladder but have not spread to the muscular wall of the bladder.

stage II bladder cancer: Cancer cells have spread to the muscular wall of the bladder.

stage III bladder cancer: Cancer cells have spread throughout the muscular wall of the bladder, to the layer of tissue surrounding the bladder and/or to the nearby reproductive organs.

stage IV bladder cancer: Cancer cells have spread to the wall of the abdomen or pelvis or to nearby lymph nodes, or it has spread to lymph nodes and other parts of the body far from the bladder.

stage I breast cancer: Cancer that is no bigger than 2 centimeters (about 1 inch) and has not spread outside the breast.

stage II breast cancer: Stage II breast cancer means one of the following: cancer that is no bigger than 2 centimeters but has spread to the lymph nodes in the armpit (the axillary lymph nodes), or cancer that is between 2 and 5 centimeters (from 1 to 2 inches) that may or may not have spread to the lymph nodes in the armpit, or cancer that is bigger than 5 centimeters (larger than 2 inches) but has not spread to the lymph nodes in the armpit.

stage III breast cancer: Stage III is divided into stages IIIA and IIIB. Stage IIIA breast cancer: Stage IIIA breast cancer is defined by either of the following: 1) the cancer is smaller than 5 centimeters and has spread to the lymph nodes in the armpit, which have grown into each other or into other structures and are attached to them, or 2) is larger than 5 centimeters and has spread to the lymph nodes in the armpit. Stage IIIB breast cancer: Stage IIIB breast cancer is defined by either of the following: 1) the cancer has spread to tissues near the breast (skin, chest wall, including the ribs and the muscles in the chest), or 2) has spread to lymph nodes inside the chest wall along the breast bone.

stage IIIA breast cancer: Stage IIIA breast cancer is defined by either of the following: 1) the cancer is smaller than 5 centimeters and has spread to the lymph nodes under the arm, which have grown into each other or into other structures and are attached to them, or 2) is larger than 5 centimeters and has spread to the lymph nodes under the arm.

stage IIIB breast cancer: Stage IIIB breast cancer is defined by either of the following: 1) the cancer has spread to tissues near the breast (skin, chest wall, including the ribs and the muscles in the chest), or 2) has spread to lymph nodes inside the chest wall along the breast bone.

stage IV breast cancer: Cancer has spread to other organs of the body, most often the bones, lungs, liver, or brain. Or, tumor has spread locally to the skin and lymph nodes inside the neck, near the collarbone.

stage I cancer of the cervix: Cancer involves the cervix but has not spread to nearby tissues. In stage IA cancer of the cervix, a very small amount of cancer that is only visible under a microscope is found deeper in the tissues of the cervix. In stage IB cancer, a larger amount of cancer is found in the tissues of the cervix.

stage II cancer of the cervix: Cancer has spread to nearby areas but is still inside the pelvis. In stage IIA cancer of the cervix, cancer has spread beyond the cervix to the upper two thirds of the vagina; in stage IIB, cancer has spread to the tissue around the cervix.

stage III cancer of the cervix: Cancer has spread throughout the pelvic area. Cancer cells may have spread to the lower part of the vagina. The cells also may have spread to block the tubes that connect the kidneys to the bladder (the ureters).

stage IV cancer of the cervix: Cancer has spread to other parts of the body. In stage IVA cancer of the cervix, cancer has spread to the bladder or rectum (organs close to the cervix); in stage IVB cancer of the cervix, cancer has spread to distant organs such as the lungs.

stage I cancer of the uterus: Cancer is found only in the main part of the uterus, but not in the cervix.

stage II cancer of the uterus: Cancer cells have spread to the cervix.

stage III cancer of the uterus: Cancer cells have spread outside the uterus to the vagina and/or lymph nodes in the pelvis, but have not spread outside the pelvis.

stage IV cancer of the uterus: Cancer cells have spread to the lining of the bladder or rectum or to distant parts of the body.

stage I cancer of the vulva: Cancer is found only in the vulva and/or the space between the opening of the rectum and the vagina (perineum). The tumor is 2 centimeters (about 1 inch) or less in size.

stage II cancer of the vulva: Cancer is found in the vulva and/or the space between the opening of the rectum and the vagina (perineum), and the tumor is larger than 2 centimeters (larger than 1 inch).

stage III cancer of the vulva: Cancer is found in the vulva and/or perineum and has spread to nearby tissues such as the lower part of the urethra (the tube through which urine passes), the vagina, the anus (the opening of the rectum), and/or has spread to nearby lymph nodes.

stage IV cancer of the vulva: Cancer has spread beyond the urethra, vagina, and anus into the lining of the bladder (the sac that holds urine) and the bowel (intestine); or, it may have spread to the lymph nodes in the pelvis or to other parts of the body.

stage 0 chronic lymphocytic leukemia: There are too many lymphocytes in the blood, but there are usually no other symptoms of leukemia.

stage I chronic lymphocytic leukemia: There are too many lymphocytes in the blood and lymph nodes are swollen.

stage II chronic lymphocytic leukemia: There are too many lymphocytes in the blood and the liver or spleen is swollen.

stage III chronic lymphocytic leukemia: There are too many lymphocytes in the blood and there are too few red blood cells (anemia). Lymph nodes, liver, or spleen may or may not be swollen.

stage IV chronic lymphocytic leukemia: There are too many lymphocytes in the blood and too few platelets. This makes it hard for the blood to clot. Lymph nodes, liver, or spleen may or may not be swollen and there may be too few red blood cells present (anemia).

stage I colorectal cancer: Tumor cells are found in deeper layers of tissue lining the colon/rectum. tumor cells have not spread to nearby lymph nodes. Also called Dukes A colorectal cancer.

stage II colorectal cancer: Tumor cells have spread beyond the colon/rectum, but not to the lymph nodes. Also called Dukes B colorectal cancer.

stage III colorectal cancer: Tumor cells have spread to organs and lymph nodes near the colon/rectum. Also called Dukes C colorectal cancer.

stage IV colorectal cancer: Cancer cells have spread to organs and lymph nodes in other parts of the body.

stage I cutaneous T-cell lymphoma: Stage I cutaneous T-cell lymphoma may be either of the following. 1) Stage IA: Cancer affects less than 10 percent of the skin’s surface and appears as red, dry, scaly patches. 2) Stage IB: Cancer affects 10 percent or more of the skin’s surface and appears as red, dry, scaly patches.

stage II cutaneous T-cell lymphoma: Stage II cutaneous T-cell lymphoma may be either of the following. 1) Stage IIA: The skin has red, dry, scaly patches but no tumors; lymph nodes are enlarged but do not contain cancer cells. 2) Stage IIB: Tumors are on the skin; lymph nodes are enlarged but do not contain cancer cells.

stage III cutaneous T-cell lymphoma: Nearly all of the skin is red, dry, and scaly; lymph nodes are either normal or enlarged but do not contain cancer cells.

stage IV cutaneous T-cell lymphoma: Stage IV cutaneous T-cell lymphoma may be either of the following. 1) Stage IVA: The skin is red, dry, and scaly, and the lymph nodes contain cancer cells. 2) Stage IVB: The skin is red, dry and scaly, cancer cells may or may not be found in lymph nodes, but cancer has spread to other organs in the body.

stage I endometrial cancer: Cancer is found only in the main part of the uterus, but not in the cervix.

stage II endometrial cancer: Cancer cells have spread to the cervix.

stage III endometrial cancer: Cancer cells have spread outside the uterus to the vagina and/or lymph nodes in the pelvis, but have not spread outside the pelvis.

stage IV endometrial cancer: Cancer cells have spread to the lining of the bladder or rectum or to distant parts of the body.

stage I cancer of the esophagus: Cancer is found in the lining of the esophagus, but has not spread to nearby tissues, lymph nodes, or other organs.

stage II cancer of the esophagus: Cancer may be found in all layers of esophageal tissue, and may have spread to regional lymph nodes, but has not spread to other tissues.

stage III cancer of the esophagus: Cancer has spread to tissues or lymph nodes near the esophagus, but has not spread to other parts of the body.

stage IV cancer of the esophagus: Cancer has spread to lymph nodes and other parts of the body far from the esophagus.

stage I Hodgkin’s disease: Cancer is found in only one lymph node area or in only one area or organ outside the lymph nodes.

stage II Hodgkin’s disease: Cancer is found in two or more lymph node areas on the same side of the diaphragm (the thin muscle under the lungs that helps one breathe), or cancer is found in only one area or organ outside of the lymphatic system and in the lymph nodes around it. Other lymph node areas on the same side of the diaphragm may also have cancer.

stage III Hodgkin’s disease: Cancer is found in lymph node areas on both sides of the diaphragm (the thin muscle under the lungs that helps one breathe). The cancer may have also spread to an area or organ near the lymph node areas and/or to the spleen.

stage IV Hodgkin’s disease: Cancer has spread to an organ or organs outside the lymph system, or cancer has spread to only one organ outside the lymph system, but lymph nodes far away from that organ are involved. Cancer cells may or may not be found in the lymph nodes near these organs.

stage I hypopharynx cancer: The tumor is confined to one area of the hypopharynx and is no larger than 2 centimeters (about three quarters of an inch) in size.

stage II hypopharynx cancer: The tumor involves more than one area of the hypopharynx or is between 2 and 4 centimeters (between three quarters of an inch and 1.5 inches) in size.

stage III hypopharynx cancer: The tumor is larger than 4 centimeters (about 1.5 inches) in size and/or has spread to a single lymph node on the same side of the neck.

stage IV hypopharynx cancer: The tumor has spread to nearby tissues and lymph nodes of the neck, and may have spread to other parts of the body.

stage I kidney cancer: A kidney tumor 2.75 inches (7 cm) or smaller.

stage II kidney cancer: A kidney tumor larger than 2.75 inches.

stage III kidney cancer: Kidney cancer that has spread to the major veins of the kidney and may have spread to a single lymph node.

stage IV kidney cancer: Kidney cancer that has spread beyond the kidney to lymph nodes or organs.

stage I laryngeal cancer: The cancer is only in the area where it started and has not spread to lymph nodes in the area or to other parts of the body. The exact definition of stage I depends on where the cancer started, as follows. Supraglottis: The cancer is only in one area of the supraglottis, and the vocal cords can move normally. Glottis: The cancer is only in the vocal cords, and the vocal cords can move normally. Subglottis: The cancer has not spread outside the subglottis.

stage II laryngeal cancer: The cancer is only in the larynx and has not spread to lymph nodes in the area or to other parts of the body. The exact definition of stage II depends on where the cancer started, as follows. Supraglottis: The cancer is in more than one area of the supraglottis, but the vocal cords can move normally. Glottis: The cancer has spread to the supraglottis or the subglottis or both. The vocal cords may or may not be able to move normally. Subglottis: The cancer has spread to the vocal cords, which may or may not be able to move normally.

stage III laryngeal cancer: The cancer has not spread outside of the larynx, but the vocal cords cannot move normally, or the cancer has spread to tissues next to the larynx; or the cancer has spread to one lymph node on the same side of the neck as the original tumor, and the lymph node measures no more than 3 centimeters (just over 1 inch).

stage IV laryngeal cancer: The cancer has spread to tissues around the larynx, such as the pharynx or the tissues in the neck. The lymph nodes in the area may or may not contain cancer; or, the cancer has spread to more than one lymph node on the same side of the neck as the cancer, to lymph nodes on one or both sides of the neck, or to any lymph node that measures more than 6 centimeters (over 2 inches); or, the cancer has spread to other parts of the body.

stage I lip and oral cavity cancer: The cancer is no more than 2 centimeters (about 1 inch) and has not spread to lymph nodes in the area.

stage II lip and oral cavity cancer: The cancer is more than 2 centimeters (about 1 inch), but less than 4 centimeters (less than 2 inches) and has not spread to lymph nodes in the area.

stage III lip and oral cavity cancer: The cancer is more than 4 centimeters (about 2 inches); or, the cancer is any size but has spread to only one lymph node on the same side of the neck as the cancer. The lymph node that contains cancer measures no more than 3 centimeters (just over one inch).

stage IV lip and oral cavity cancer: The cancer has spread to tissues around the lip and oral cavity (the lymph nodes in the area may or may not contain cancer); or, the cancer is any size and has spread to more than one lymph node on the same side of the neck as the cancer, to lymph nodes on one or both sides of the neck, or to any lymph node that measures more than 6 centimeters (over 2 inches); or, the cancer has spread to other parts of the body.

stage I melanoma: Cancer is found in the outer layer of the skin (epidermis) and/or the upper part of the inner layer of skin (dermis), but it has not spread to nearby lymph nodes. The tumor is no more than 1.5 millimeters thick.

stage II melanoma: The tumor is 1.5 millimeters to 4 millimeters thick. It has spread to the lower part of the inner layer of skin (dermis), but not into the tissue below the skin or into nearby lymph nodes.

stage III melanoma: Stage III melanoma is defined by any of the following: 1) the tumor is more than 4 millimeters thick; 2) the tumor has spread to the body tissue below the skin; 3) there are additional tumor growths within 2 centimeters of the original tumor (satellite tumors); or 4) the tumor has spread to nearby lymph nodes or there are additional tumor growths (satellite tumors) between the original tumor and the lymph nodes in the area.

stage IV melanoma: The tumor has spread to other organs or to lymph nodes far from the original tumor.

stage I mesothelioma: The cancer is found in the lining of the chest cavity near the lung and heart or in the diaphragm (the thin muscle below the lungs and heart that separates the chest from the abdomen) or the lung.

stage II mesothelioma: The cancer has spread beyond the lining of the chest to lymph nodes in the chest.

stage III mesothelioma: Cancer has spread into the chest wall, center of the chest, heart, through the diaphragm (the thin muscle below the lungs and heart that separates the chest from the abdomen), or abdominal lining, and in some cases into nearby lymph nodes.

stage IV mesothelioma: Cancer has spread to distant organs or tissues.

stage I multiple myeloma: Relatively few cancer cells have spread throughout the body. There may be no symptoms of disease.

stage II multiple myeloma: A moderate number of cancer cells have spread throughout the body.

stage III multiple myeloma: A relatively large number of cancer cells have spread throughout the body. there may be one or more of the following: (1) a decrease in the number of red blood cells, causing anemia; (2) the amount of calcium in the blood is very high, because the bones are being damaged; (3) more than three bone tumors (plasmacytomas) are found; or (4) high levels of M-protein are found in the blood or urine.

stage I nasopharynx cancer: Cancer is confined to the nasopharynx.

stage II nasopharynx cancer: Stage II nasopharynx cancer may be either of the following. Stage IIA: Cancer that extends from the nasopharynx to the oropharynx and/or nasal fossa. Stage IIB: Cancer of the nasopharynx that has spread to nearby lymph nodes or extends to the parapharyngeal area.

stage III nasopharynx cancer: Cancer that has spread to lymph nodes on both sides of the neck or has spread to nearby bones or sinuses.

stage IV nasopharynx cancer: Stage IV nasopharynx cancer may be one of the following. 1) Stage IVA: Cancer has spread beyond the nasopharynx to other areas in the head and may have spread to nearby lymph nodes. 2) Stage IVB: Cancer has spread beyond the nasopharynx to other areas in the head and to lymph nodes above the collarbone or that are larger than 6 cm. 3) Stage IVC: Cancer that has spread to other organs of the body.

stage I non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma: Cancer is found in only one lymph node area or in only one area or organ outside the lymph nodes.

stage II non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma: Cancer is found in two or more lymph node areas on the same side of the diaphragm (the muscle under the lungs that helps breathing). Cancer is found in only one area or organ outside the lymph nodes and in the lymph nodes around it. Other lymph node areas on the same side of the diaphragm may also have cancer.

stage III non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma: Cancer is found in lymph node areas on both sides of the diaphragm. The cancer may also have spread to an area or organ near the lymph node areas and/or to the spleen.

stage IV non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma: Cancer has spread to more than one organ or organs outside the lymph system. Cancer cells may or may not be found in the lymph nodes near these organs. Cancer has spread to only one organ outside the lymph system, but lymph nodes far away from that organ are involved.

stage I non-small cell lung cancer: Cancer is in the lung only and has not spread to tissue around the lung.

stage II non-small cell lung cancer: Cancer has spread to nearby lymph nodes.

stage III non-small cell lung cancer: Cancer has spread to structures near the lung; to the lymph nodes in the area that separates the two lungs (mediastinum); or it has spread to the lymph nodes on the other side of the chest or in the neck. Stage III is further divided into stage IIIA (usually can be resected) and stage IIIB (usually cannot be resected).

stage IV non-small cell lung cancer: Cancer has spread to other parts of the body.

stage I oropharynx cancer: The tumor is no larger than 2 centimeters (about three quarters of an inch) in size and is confined to the oropharynx.

stage II oropharynx cancer: The tumor is between 2 centimeters and 4 centimeters (between three quarters of an inch and 1.5 inches) in size and is confined to the oropharynx.

stage III oropharynx cancer: The tumor is larger than 4 centimeters (about 1.5 inches) in size and may involve a single lymph node on the same side of the neck.

stage IV oropharynx cancer: The tumor has spread to the hard palate, tongue, or larynx, to nearby lymph nodes, and may have spread to other parts of the body.

stage I ovarian cancer: Cancer is found in one or both of the ovaries only, and has not spread.

stage II ovarian cancer: Cancer is found in one or both ovaries and/or has spread to the uterus, and/or the fallopian tubes, and/or other body parts within the pelvis.

stage III ovarian cancer: Cancer is found in one or both ovaries and has spread to lymph nodes or to other body parts inside the abdomen, such as the surface of the liver or intestine.

stage IV ovarian cancer: Cancer is found in one or both ovaries and has spread outside the abdomen or has spread to the inside of the liver.

stage I pancreatic cancer: Cancer is found only in the pancreas itself, or has started to spread to the tissues next to the pancreas, such as the small intestine, the stomach, or the bile duct.

stage II pancreatic cancer: Cancer has spread to nearby organs such as the stomach, spleen, or colon, but has not entered the lymph nodes.

stage III pancreatic cancer: Cancer has spread to lymph nodes near the pancreas. The cancer may or may not have spread to nearby organs.

stage IV pancreatic cancer: Cancer has spread to places far away from the pancreas, such as the liver or lungs.

stage I prostate cancer: Cancer that is only in the prostate gland, cannot be felt during a digital rectal examination, is not visible by imaging, and causes no symptoms. It is usually found accidentally or because a blood test showed an elevated prostate-specific antigen (PSA) level. Cancer cells may be found in only one area of the prostate or they may be found in many areas of the prostate. Similar to stage A in the Whitmore-Jewett staging system.

stage II prostate cancer: Cancer that may be found by a needle biopsy done because a blood test showed elevated prostate-specific antigen (PSA); or cancer which may be felt in the prostate during a rectal examination, even though the cancer cells are found only in the prostate gland. Similar to stage B in the Whitmore-Jewett staging system.

stage III prostate cancer: Cancer cells have spread outside the covering (capsule) of the prostate to tissues around the prostate but not to the lymph nodes. The glands that produce semen (the seminal vesicles) may have cancer cells in them. Similar to stage C in the Whitmore-Jewett staging system.

stage IV prostate cancer: Cancer cells have spread (metastasized) to lymph nodes (near or far from the prostate) or to organs and tissues far away from the prostate such as the bone, liver, or lungs. Similar to stage D in the Whitmore-Jewett staging system.

stage IA soft tissue sarcoma: The cancer cells look very much like normal cells. The cancer is less than 5 centimeters in size (about 2 inches), but it has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.

stage IB soft tissue sarcoma: The cancer cells look somewhat different from normal cells. The cancer is more than 5 centimeters (about 2 inches). It has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.

stage IIA soft tissue sarcoma: The cancer cells look somewhat different from normal cells. The cancer is more than 5 centimeters (about 2 inches). It has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.

stage IIB soft tissue sarcoma: The cancer cells look very different from normal cells. The cancer is less than 5 centimeters (about 2 inches). It has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.

stage IIC soft tissue sarcoma: The cancer cells look very different from normal cells. The cancer is more than 5 centimeters (about 2 inches). It has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.

stage III soft tissue sarcoma: The cancer cells look very different from normal cells. The cancer is more than 5 centimeters (about 2 inches). It has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.

stage IV soft tissue sarcoma: The cancer has spread to lymph nodes in the area or other parts of the body, such as the lungs, head, or neck.

stage I stomach cancer: Cancer is in the second or third layers of the stomach wall and has not spread to lymph nodes near the cancer or is in the second layer of the stomach wall and has spread to lymph nodes very close to the tumor.

stage II stomach cancer: Stage II stomach cancer is defined by any of the following: (1) cancer is in the second layer of the stomach wall and has spread to lymph nodes further away from the tumor; (2) cancer is only in the muscle layer (the third layer) of the stomach has spread to lymph nodes very close to the tumor; or, (3) cancer is in all four layers of the stomach wall but has not spread to lymph nodes or other organs.

stage III stomach cancer: Stage III stomach cancer is defined by any of the following: (1) cancer is in the third layer of the stomach wall and has spread to lymph nodes further away from the tumor; (2) cancer is in all four layers of the stomach wall and has spread to lymph nodes either very close to the tumor or further away from the tumor; or, (3) cancer is in all four layers of the stomach wall and has spread to nearby tissues. The cancer may or may not have spread to lymph nodes very close to the tumor.

stage IV stomach cancer: Cancer has spread to nearby tissues and to lymph nodes further away from the tumor or has spread to other parts of the body.

stage I testicular cancer: Cancer is found in the testicle only, or has spread into the scrotum.

stage II testicular cancer: Cancer has spread to the lymph nodes in the abdomen.

stage III testicular cancer: Cancer has spread beyond the lymph nodes in the abdomen. There may be cancer in parts of the body far away from the testicles.

stage I Wilms’ tumor: Cancer is found in the kidney only and can be completely removed by surgery.

stage II Wilms’ tumor: Cancer has spread to tissue near the kidney, to blood vessels, or to the renal sinus (a part of the kidney through which blood and fluid enter and exit). The cancer can be completely removed by surgery.

stage III Wilms’ tumor: Cancer has spread to tissues near the kidney and cannot be completely removed by surgery. The cancer may have spread to blood vessels or organs near the kidney or throughout the abdomen. The cancer may also have spread to lymph nodes near the kidney.

stage IV Wilms’ tumor: Cancer has spread to organs further away from the kidney, such as the lungs, liver, bone, and brain.

stage V Wilms’ tumor: Cancer cells are found in both kidneys.

staging: Doing exams and tests to learn the extent of the cancer within the body, especially whether the disease has spread from the original site to other parts of the body.

stavudine: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called nucleoside analogues. It is used to treat infection caused by viruses.

stem cells: The cells from which all blood cells develop.

stem cell transplantation: A method of replacing immature blood-forming cells that were destroyed by cancer treatment. The stem cells are given to the person after treatment to help the bone marrow recover and continue producing healthy blood cells.

stereotactic radiosurgery: A radiation therapy technique involving a rigid head frame that is attached to the skull; high-dose radiation is administered through openings in the head frame to the tumor while decreasing the amount of radiation given to normal brain tissue. This procedure does not involve surgery. Also called stereotaxic radiosurgery and stereotactic radiation therapy.

stereotaxis (stair-ee-o-TAK-sis): Use of a computer and scanning devices to create three-dimensional pictures. This method can be used to direct a biopsy, external radiation, or the insertion of radiation implants.

sterile: The inability to produce children.

steroid therapy: Treatment with corticosteroid drugs to reduce swelling, pain, and other symptoms of inflammation.

steroids (STEH-roidz): Drugs used to relieve swelling and inflammation.

stoma: A surgically created opening from an area inside the body to the outside. Colostomy and urostomy are types of stomas. Also called an ostomy.

stomach: An organ that is part of the digestive system. It helps in the digestion of food by mixing it with digestive juices and churning it into a thin liquid.

stool: The waste matter discharged in a bowel movement; feces.

stool test: A test to check for hidden blood in the bowel movement.

streptavidin: A small bacterial protein that binds with high affinity to the vitamin biotin. This streptavidin-biotin combination can be used to link molecules such as radioisotopes and monoclonal antibodies together. These bound products have the property of being attracted to, and attached to, cancer cells, rather than normal cells. The radiolabeled products are more easily removed from the body thus decreasing their toxicity.

streptozocin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

Stromagen: A drug that is derived from a patient’s stem cells (specialized cells in the bone marrow which form new blood cells) and may be given back to them to help restore bone marrow that has been damaged by high dose chemotherapy.

strontium: A metal often used in a radioactive form for imaging tests or as a treatment for cancer.

strontium-89: A radioactive compound that is absorbed by the bone. It is used to treat bone pain associated with prostate cancer.

SU5416: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors.

subcutaneous: Beneath the skin.

subcutaneous port: A tube surgically placed into a blood vessel and attached to a disk placed under the skin. It is used for the administration of intravenous fluids and drugs. It can also be used to obtain blood samples.

subglottis (SUB-glot-is): The lowest part of the larynx; the area from just below the vocal cords down to the top of the trachea.

sucralfate: A drug used to treat ulcers. It adheres to proteins at the ulcer site and forms a protective coating over the ulcer. It is also used to treat mucositis.

sulindac sulfone: An analgesic drug that belongs to the family of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents. It is also being studied in cancer prevention.

sun protection factor: SPF. A scale for rating the level of sunburn protection in sunscreen products. The higher the SPF, the more sunburn protection it provides.

sunscreen: A substance that helps protect the skin from the sun’s harmful rays. Sunscreens reflect, absorb, and/or scatter both UVA and UVB radiation. Using lotions, creams, or gels that contain sunscreens can help protect the skin from premature skin aging and damage that may lead to skin cancer.

supplementation: Adding nutrients to the diet.

Network: A Network of people with similar disease who meet to discuss how better to cope with their cancer and/or treatment.

supportive care: Treatment given to prevent, control, or relieve complications and side effects and to improve the person’s comfort and quality of life.

supraclavicular lymph nodes: Lymph nodes located above the clavicle (collar bone).

supraglottis (SOOP-ra-GLOT-is): The upper part of the larynx (voice box), including the epiglottis; the area above the vocal cords.

supratentorial: Located in the upper part of the brain.

suramin: A drug used to treat bacterial and parasitic infections. It is also being studied in the treatment of cancer.

surgery: A procedure to remove or repair a part of the body or to find out if disease is present.

surgical castration: Surgical removal of the testicles (orchiectomy) or ovaries (oophorectomy) to stop the production of sex hormones. Decreasing the levels of hormones may stop the growth of certain cancers.

systemic (sis-TEM-ik): Affecting the entire body.

systemic therapy (sis-TEM-ik): Treatment that uses substances that travel through the bloodstream, reaching and affecting cells all over the body.

T138067: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called mitotic inhibitors. It inhibits the growth of cancer cells by preventing cell division.

T4N5 liposomal lotion: Enzyme lotion used in treating xeroderma pigmentosum.

T-cell depletion: Treatment to destroy T cells, which play an important role in the immune response. Elimination of T cells from a bone marrow graft from another person may reduce the chance of an immune reaction against the person’s tissues.

T-cell lymphoma (lim-FO-ma): A disease in which certain cells of the lymph system (called T lymphocytes) become cancerous.

T cells: One type of white blood cell that attacks virus-infected cells, foreign cells, and cancer cells. They also produce a number of substances that regulate the immune response.

tacrolimus: A drug used to help reduce the risk of rejection by the body of organ and bone marrow transplants.

TAG-72 antigen: A protein/sugar complex found on the surface of many cancer cells, including breast, colon, and pancreatic cells.

tamoxifen: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antiestrogens. Tamoxifen blocks the effects of the hormone estrogen in the body. It is used to prevent or delay the return of breast cancer or to control its spread.

taxanes: Anticancer drugs that inhibit cancer cell growth by stopping cell division. Also called antimitotic or antimicrotubule agents, or mitotic inhibitors.

technetium Tc 99m dextran: A radiolabeled substance that is used in cancer diagnosis.

technetium Tc 99m sulfur colloid: A radiolabeled substance that is used to help identify sites of tumor development.

tegafur: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

temoporfin: An anticancer drug that is also used in cancer prevention. It belongs to the family of drugs called photosensitizing agents.

temozolomide: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

teniposide: An anticancer drug that is a podophyllotoxin derivative and belongs to the family of drugs called mitotic inhibitors.

testicles (TES-tih-kuls): The two egg-shaped glands found inside the scrotum. They produce sperm and male hormones.

testosterone (tes-TOS-ter-own): A hormone that promotes the development and maintenance of male sex characteristics.

tetracycline: An antibiotic drug used to treat infection.

thalidomide: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors. It prevents the growth of new blood vessels into a solid tumor.

theophylline: A drug used to improve breathing in people who are short of breath. It belongs to the family of drugs called bronchodilators or respiratory smooth muscle relaxants.

thioguanine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.

thiotepa: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

thoracentesis (thor-a-sen-TEE-sis): Removal of fluid from the pleural cavity through a needle inserted between the ribs.

thoracic (thor-ASS-ik): Pertaining to the chest.

thoracoscopy: The use of a thin, lighted tube (called an endoscope) to examine the inside of the chest.

thoracotomy (thor-a-KAH-toe-mee): An operation to open the chest.

thrombocytes (THROM-bo-sites): Blood cells that help prevent bleeding by causing blood clots to form. Also called platelets.

thrombocytopenia: A decrease in the number of platelets in the blood which may result in easy bruising and excessive bleeding from wounds or bleeding in mucous membranes and other tissues.

thrombophlebitis (throm-bo-fleh-BY-tis): Inflammation of a vein that occurs when a blood clot forms.

thrombopoietin: A colony-stimulating factor that stimulates the production of blood cells, especially platelets, during chemotherapy. It is a cytokine that belongs to the family of drugs called hematopoietic (blood forming) agents.

thymidine: A chemical compound found in DNA. Also used as treatment for mucositis.

thymoma: A tumor of the thymus, an organ that is part of the lymphatic system and is located in the chest, behind the breastbone.

thymus: An organ that is part of the lymphatic system in which T lymphocytes mature and multiply. It is located in the chest, behind the breastbone.

thyroid: A gland located near the windpipe (trachea) that produces thyroid hormone, which helps regulate growth and metabolism.

tiazofurin: An anticancer drug being studied to stop cell growth.

tin ethyl etiopurpurin: An anticancer drug that is also used in cancer prevention. It belongs to the family of drugs called photosensitizing agents. Also called SnET2.

tinidazole: A drug used to treat protozoal infections, such as amebiasis, giardiasis, and trichomoniasis. It belongs to a family of drugs called antiprotozoal agents. Tinidazole is also being evaluated in the treatment of H. pylori infections in people with low-grade gastric lymphoma.

tin Sn 117m DTPA: A radioactive chemical being studied to treat bone pain associated with cancer.

tirapazamine: A drug that makes tumor cells more sensitive to radiation therapy.

tissue (TISH-oo): A Network or layer of cells that together perform specific functions.

TNP-470: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors. It prevents the growth of new blood vessels into a solid tumor.

tonsils: Small masses of lymphoid tissue on either side of the throat.

topical: On the surface of the body.

topical chemotherapy (kee-mo-THER-a-pee): Treatment with anticancer drugs in a lotion or cream applied on the skin.

topoisomerase inhibitors: A family of anticancer drugs. The topoisomerase enzymes are responsible for the arrangement and rearrangement of DNA in the cell and for cell growth and replication. Inhibiting these enzymes may kill cancer cells or stop their growth.

topotecan: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family drugs called topoisomerase inhibitors.

toremifene: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antiestrogens. Toremifene blocks the effect of the hormone estrogen in the body. It may help control some cancers from growing, and it may delay or reduce the risk of cancer recurrence.

total-body irradiation: Radiation therapy to the entire body. Usually followed by bone marrow or peripheral stem cell transplantation.

total estrogen blockade: Therapy used to eliminate estrogen in the body. This may be done with surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, or a combination of these.

total hysterectomy: Surgery to remove the entire uterus.

total mastectomy (mas-TEK-toe-mee): Removal of the breast. Also called simple mastectomy.

total nodal irradiation: Radiation therapy to the mantle field, the spleen, the lymph nodes in the upper abdomen, and the lymph nodes in the pelvic area.

total pancreatectomy (pan-cree-a- tEK-toe-mee): Surgery to remove the entire pancreas.

toxins: Poisons produced by certain animals, plants, or bacteria.

tracer: A substance, such as a radioisotope, used in imaging procedures.

trachea (TRAY-kee-a): The airway that leads from the larynx to the lungs. Also called the windpipe.

tracheoesophageal puncture (TRAY-kee-o-eh-SOF-a-JEE-al PUNK-chur): A small opening made by a surgeon between the esophagus and the trachea. A valve keeps food out of the trachea but lets air into the esophagus for esophageal speech.

tracheostomy (TRAY-kee-AHS-toe- mee): Surgery to create an opening (stoma) into the windpipe. The opening itself may also be called a tracheostomy.

tracheostomy button (TRAY-kee-AHS-toe-mee): A 1/2- to 1 1/2-inch-long plastic tube placed in a surgically created opening (tracheostomy) in the windpipe to keep it open.

tracheostomy tube (TRAY-kee-AHS-toe-mee): A 2- to 3-inch-long curved metal or plastic tube placed in a surgically created opening (tracheostomy) in the windpipe to keep it open. Also called a trach (“trake”) tube.

transformation: The change that a normal cell undergoes as it becomes malignant.

transfusion (trans-FYOO-zhun): The infusion of components of blood or whole blood into the bloodstream. The blood may be donated from another person or it may have been taken from the person earlier and stored until needed.

transitional cell carcinoma (kar-sin-O-ma): Cancer that develops in the lining of the renal pelvis. This type of cancer can also occur in the ureter or the bladder.

transitional cells: Cells lining some organs.

transplantation (trans-plan-TAY-shun): The replacement of an organ with one from another person.

transrectal ultrasound: A procedure used to examine the prostate. An instrument is inserted into the rectum, and sound waves bounce off the prostate. These sound waves create echoes, which a computer uses to create a picture called a sonogram.

transurethral prostatic resection (TRANZ-yoo-REE-thral ree-SEK-shun): Surgical procedure to remove tissue from the prostate using an instrument inserted through urethral. Also called TURP.

transurethral resection: Surgery performed with a special instrument inserted through the urethra. Also called TUR.

transvaginal ultrasound: A procedure used to examine the vagina, uterus, fallopian tubes, and bladder. An instrument is inserted into the vagina, and sound waves bounce off organs inside the pelvic area. These sound waves create echoes, which a computer uses to create a picture called a sonogram. Also called TVS.

trastuzumab: A type of monoclonal antibody used in cancer detection or therapy. Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-produced substances that can locate and bind to cancer cells. Trastuzumab blocks the effects of the growth factor protein HER2 which transmits growth signals to breast cancer cells.

tretinoin: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called retinoids. It is used in the treatment of acne and is being studied in cancer prevention.

tributyrin: A triglyceride drug that may inhibit cell growth and induce cell differentiation. Differentiating agents may be effective in changing cancer cells back into normal cells.

trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole: An antibiotic drug used to treat infection and prevent pneumocystis carinii pneumonia.

trimetrexate glucuronate: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites. It is used in the treatment of pneumocystis carinii pneumonia and is being studied in the treatment of cancer.

triptorelin: A hormonal anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called gonadotropin releasing hormones.

troglitazone: A drug used in diabetes treatment that is being studied for its effect on reducing the risk of cancer cell growth in fat tissue.

tumor (TOO-mer): An abnormal mass of tissue that results from excessive cell division. Tumors perform no useful body function. They may be either benign (not cancerous) or malignant (cancerous).

tumor debulking: Surgically removing as much of the tumor as possible.

tumor-derived: Taken from a person’s tumor-tissue; may be used in the development of a vaccine that enhances the body’s ability to build an immune response to the tumor.

tumor infiltrating lymphocytes: White blood cells that have left the bloodstream and migrated into a tumor.

tumor marker: Substances sometimes found in an increased amount in the blood, other body fluids, or tissues and which may suggest the presence of some types of cancer. Tumor markers include CA 125 (ovarian cancer), CA 15-3 (breast cancer), CEA (ovarian, lung, breast, pancreas, and GI tract cancers), and PSA (prostate cancer). Also called biomarkers.

tumor necrosis factor (TOO-mer ne-KRO-sis): A type of biological response modifier that can improve the body’s natural response to disease.

tumor suppressor gene (TOO-mer): Genes in the body that can suppress or block the development of cancer.

tyrosinase peptide: A tumor specific antigen used in the development of cancer vaccines.

UCN-01: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called staurosporine analogues.

ulcerative colitis: A disease that causes long-term inflammation of the lining of the colon; it increases the risk for colon cancer.

ultrasonography(UL-tra-son-OG-ra-fee): A study in which sound waves (called ultrasound) are bounced off tissues and the echoes are converted into a picture (sonogram).

ultrasound test: A test that bounces sound waves off tissues and internal organs and changes the echoes into pictures (sonograms).

ultraviolet radiation (ul-tra- VYE-o-let ray-dee-AY-shun): Invisible rays that are part of the energy that comes from the sun. UV radiation can damage the skin and cause melanoma and other types of skin cancer. UV radiation that reaches the earth’s surface is made up of two types of rays, called UVA and UVB rays. UVB rays are more likely than UVA rays to cause sunburn, but UVA rays pass deeper into the skin. Scientists have long thought that UVB radiation can cause melanoma and other types of skin cancer. They now think that UVA radiation also may add to skin damage that can lead to skin cancer and cause premature skin aging. For this reason, skin specialists recommend that people use sunscreens that reflect, absorb, and/or scatter both kinds of UV radiation.

ultraviolet radiation therapy: A form of radiation used in the treatment of cancer.

umbilical cord blood: Blood from the placenta (afterbirth) that contains high concentrations of stem cells needed to produce new blood cells.

umbilical cord blood transplantation: The injection of umbilical cord blood to restore a person’s blood production system that has been suppressed by anticancer drugs and/or radiation therapy. It is being studied in the treatment of cancer and severe blood disorders such as aplastic anemia. Cord blood contains high concentrations of stem cells needed to produce new blood cells.

unresectable: Unable to be surgically removed.

unresectable gallbladder cancer: All of the cancer cannot be removed in an operation. Cancer has spread to the tissues around the gallbladder, such as the liver, stomach, pancreas, or intestine and/or to lymph nodes in the area.

upper GI series: A series of x-rays of the upper digestive system that are taken after a person drinks a barium solution, which outlines the digestive organs on the x-rays.

uracil: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.

ureter (yoo-REE-ter): The tube that carries urine from the kidney to the bladder.

urethra (yoo-REE-thra): The tube through which urine leaves the body. It empties urine from the bladder.

urinalysis: A test that determines the content of the urine.

urinary tract (YOO-rin-air-ee): The organs of the body that produce and discharge urine. These include the kidneys, ureters, bladder, and urethra.

urine (YOO-rin): Fluid containing water and waste products. Urine is made by the kidneys, stored in the bladder, and leaves the body through the urethra.

urokinase: A drug that dissolves blood clots or prevents them from forming.

urologist (yoo-RAHL-o-jist): A doctor who specializes in diseases of the urinary organs in females and the urinary and sex organs in males.

urostomy (yoo-RAHS-toe-mee): An operation to create an opening from inside the body to the outside, making a new way to pass urine.

uterus (YOO-ter-us): The small, hollow, pear-shaped organ in a woman’s pelvis. This is the organ in which a fetus develops. Also called the womb.

vaccination: Treatment with a vaccine.

vaccine: A compound or Network of compounds designed to produce an immune response to a tumor or disease.

vaccinia CEA vaccine: A cancer vaccine containing the carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) gene.

vagina (vah-JYE-na): The muscular canal extending from the uterus to the exterior of the body. Also called the birth canal.

vancomycin: An antibiotic drug used to fight resistant bacterial infections.

vasectomy (vas-EK-toe-mee): An operation to cut or tie off the two tubes that carry sperm out of the testicles.

venlafaxine: An antidepressant drug that is being evaluated for the treatment of hot flashes in women who have breast cancer.

ventricles (VEN-trih-kulz): Fluid-filled cavities in the heart or brain.

video-assisted surgery: Surgery that is aided by the use of a video camera that projects and enlarges the image on a television screen. Also called video-assisted resection.

vinblastine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of plant drugs called vinca alkaloids. It is a mitotic inhibitor.

vinca alkaloids: Anticancer drugs that inhibit cancer cell growth by stopping cell division. They are also called antimitotic or antimicrotubule agents, or mitotic inhibitors.

vincristine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of plant drugs called vinca alkaloids.

vindesine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of plant drugs called vinca alkaloids.

vinorelbine: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of plant drugs called vinca alkaloids.

vinyl chloride (VYE-nil KLO-ride): A substance used in manufacturing plastics. It may increase the risk of liver, brain, and lung cancers, and lymphoma and leukemia.

viruses (VYE-rus-ez): Sub-microscopic organisms that cause infectious disease. In cancer therapy, some viruses may be made into vaccines that help the body build an immune response to and kill tumor cells.

visual pathway glioma: A rare, slow-growing tumor of the eye.

vital: Necessary to maintain life. Breathing is a vital function.

vitamin A: A vitamin used in cancer prevention; it belongs to the family of drugs called retinoids.

vitamin E: A vitamin used in cancer prevention; it belongs to the family of drugs called tocopherols.

vitamin K: A substance that promotes the clotting of blood.

vocal cords: Two small bands of muscle within the larynx that vibrate to produce the voice.

von Hippel-Lindau syndrome: A rare inherited disorder in which blood vessels grow abnormally in the eyes, brain, spinal cord, adrenal glands, or other parts of the body. People with von Hippel-Lindau syndrome have a higher risk of developing some types of cancer.

voriconazole: A drug that treats infections caused by fungi.

vorozole: A hormone therapy drug used to decrease the production of estrogen.

VX-710: A drug being studied to make cancer cells less resistant to the effects of chemotherapy.

VX 853: A drug being studied to make cancer cells less resistant to the effects of chemotherapy.

Waldenstrom’s macroglobulinemia: A rare cancer of the lymph cells that causes the body to produce abnormal levels of plasma cells (plasmacytosis) and lymphocytes (lymphocytosis) in the bone marrow. Waldenstrom’s macroglobulinemia may also cause a decrease in red blood cells (anemia) and enlargement of the liver (hepatomegaly), spleen (splenomegaly), or glands(adenopathy).

warfarin: A drug that prevents blood from clotting. Also called an anticoagulant (blood thinner).

wart: A raised growth on the surface of the skin or other organ.

watchful waiting: The person’s condition is closely monitored, but treatment does not begin until symptoms appear or change. Also called observation.

Whipple procedure: A type of surgery used to treat pancreatic cancer. The head of the pancreas, the duodenum, a portion of the stomach, and other nearby tissues are removed.

white blood cells: Cells that help the body fight infection and disease.

Whitmore-Jewett staging system: A system used for the staging of prostate cancer.

Wilms’ tumor: A kidney cancer that occurs in children, usually before the age of five.

x-ray: High-energy radiation used in low doses to diagnose diseases and in high doses to treat cancer.

xeroderma pigmentosum: A genetic condition characterized by a sensitivity to all sources of ultraviolet radiation.

xerogram: A picture of the body recorded on paper rather than on film. Also called a xeroradiograph.

xeroradiography (ZEE-ro-ray-dee-AH-gra- fee): A type of x-ray in which a picture of the body is recorded on paper rather than on film.

ziconotide: A drug used in the treatment of chronic pain. Also called SNX 111.

zidovudine: A drug that inhibits the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) that causes AIDS. Also called AZT.

zinc oxide: A compound that may enhance immune function, especially when administered by inhalation.

zoledronate: A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called bisphosphonates. It is used to prevent bone fractures and reduce bone pain in people who have cancer that has spread to the bone.