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A Glossary of Common Cancer Terms

/31 Jul 2022
/By admin

For those caregiving for someone with a cancer diagnosis, it’s best to be as knowledgeable as possible. A cancer diagnosis can inject heavy doses of uncertainty into a life. Knowing as much as you can will clear some of the clouds of uncertainty, and provide coherency to the situation.

Thus, whether you are a home health aide in South Florida or a family caregiver in Los Angeles, it’s imperative to familiarize yourself with the common cancer terminology according to our friends at Expicare Nursing.

Acute: These are symptoms that can start and worsen quickly, but they will not last over a prolonged period of time.

Benign: This is often used to describe a tumor that is not cancerous.

Biopsy: This is a procedure in which a small sample of tissue is removed for cancerous testing.

Cancer: A disease that is caused by abnormal cell growth that can occur throughout the body.

Carcinoma: A form of cancer that begins in the skin or tissues which are attached to the internal organs.

Chemotherapy: A treatment option used to prevent, impede, or fully reverse the development of cancer.

Immunotherapy: This is a treatment form that activates the immune system. Through stimulating your body’s natural defenses, immunotherapy can aid in fighting diseases like cancer.

Infiltrating Cancer: A form of cancer that has invaded past the original tissue that it started in. It has the potential to spread to other forms of the body.

Leukemia: This is a cancer that occurs when white blood cells begin to replicate without control. It is also known as blood cancer.

Mass: A mass is often in reference to a lump within the body.

Oncologist: A person who treats and provides medical care for patients diagnosed with cancer.

Pathologist: A professional who can interpret laboratory tests. They will be able to evaluate the state of the body’s systems and aid in the diagnosis of the disease.

Pre-malignant: This term is in reference to cells that are currently non-cancerous but have the capacity to become cancerous.

Prognosis: This is a prediction of the future course of the disease.

Staging: Staging refers to the positionality and trajectory of the cancer. It tells you where your cancer is located, if its position is affecting other locations of the body, and whether it has (or will) spread.

Tumor: A tumor occurs when cells begin to grow and change uncontrollably. These cells will form a mass that can be detected by your cancer care team.

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with cancer and are in need of care, contact a home health aide today for help.