Ovarian Cancer Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Ovarian Cancer article.

Abdomen: The belly, that part of the body that contains all of the structures between the...

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Abdominal: Relating to the abdomen, the belly, that part of the body that contains all of ...

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Abdominal muscles: A large group of muscles in the front of the abdomen that assists in th...

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Abdominal pain: Pain in the belly. Abdominal pain can be acute or chronic. It may reflect ...

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Abnormal: Outside the expected norm, or uncharacteristic of a particular patient.

Asbestos: A natural material made up of tiny fibers that is used as thermal insulation. In...

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Ascites: An abnormal accumulation of fluid within the abdomen. There are many causes of as...

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Benign: Not malignant. A benign tumor is one that does not invade surrounding tissue or sp...

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Bilateral: Affecting both sides. For example, bilateral arthritis affects joints on both t...

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Biopsy: The removal of a sample of tissue for examination under a microscope to check for ...

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Birth control: Birth control is the use of any practices, methods, or devices to prevent p...

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BRCA2: A gene that normally acts to restrain the growth of cells in the breast and ovary b...

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Breast cancer: Breast cancer is diagnosed with self- and physician-examination of the brea...

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Breastfeeding: Feeding a child human breast milk. According to the American Academy of Ped...

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Breathing: The process of respiration, during which air is inhaled into the lungs through ...

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Cancer: An abnormal growth of cells which tend to proliferate in an uncontrolled way and, ...

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Cancer causes: In most individual cases of cancer, the exact cause of cancer is unknown. T...

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Cancer symptoms: Abnormal sensations or conditions that persons can notice that are a resu...

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Capsule: Capsule has many meanings in medicine including the following:

  1. In medici...

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Carcinoma: Cancer that begins in the skin or in tissues that line or cover body organs. Ex...

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Cell: The basic structural and functional unit of any living thing. Each cell is a small c...

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Cervical: Having to do with any kind of neck, including the neck on which the head is perc...

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Cervical cancer: Cancer of the entrance to the womb (uterus). The cervix is the lower, na...

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Chemotherapy: 1. In the original sense, a chemical that binds to and specifically k...

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Colon: The long, coiled, tubelike organ that removes water from digested food. The remaini...

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Colon cancer: A malignant tumor arising from the inner wall of the large intestine (the co...

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Colorectal: Related to the colon and/or rectum.

Colorectal cancer: A malignant tumor arising from the inner wall of the large intestine (t...

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Computed tomography: An x-ray procedure that uses the help of a computer to produce a deta...

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Congestive heart failure: Inability of the heart to keep up with the demands on it, with f...

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Constipation: Infrequent and frequently incomplete bowel movements. Constipation is the op...

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CT scan: Computed tomography scan. Detailed images of internal organs are obtained by this...

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Cysts: Cysts are abnormal, closed sac-like structures within a tissue that contain a liqui...

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Diagnosis: 1 The nature of a disease; the identification of an illness. 2 A ...

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Diarrhea: A common condition that involves unusually frequent and liquid bowel movements. ...

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Ectopic: In the wrong place, out of place. For example, an ectopic kidney is a kidney that...

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Emergency department: The department of a hospital responsible for the provision of medica...

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Endometriosis: The presence of tissue that normally grows inside the uterus (womb) in an ...

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Epithelial: Relating to the epithelium.

Epithelium: The outside layer of cells that covers all the free, open surfaces of the body...

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Essential: In medicine, of unknown cause, as in essential hypertension (high blood pressur...

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Estrogen: A female steroid hormone that is produced by the ovaries and, in lesser amounts,...

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Fallopian tube: One of the two Fallopian tubes that transport the egg from the ovary to th...

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Family history: The family structure and relationships within the family, including inform...

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Fertility: The ability to conceive and bear children, the ability to become pregnant throu...

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Fever: Although a fever technically is any body temperature above the normal of 98.6 F (37...

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Fibroids: Fibroids are common, benign tumors of smooth muscle in the uterus (womb). Uterin...

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Gallbladder: A pear-shaped organ located below the liver that stores the bile secreted by ...

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Gene: The basic biological unit of heredity. A segment of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) need...

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Genes: The basic biological units of heredity. Segments of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) nee...

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Genetic: Having to do with genes and genetic
information.

Genetic screening: Testing of a population to identify individuals who are at risk for a g...

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Genetic testing: Tests done for clinical genetic purposes. Genetic tests may be done for ...

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Genetics: The scientific study of heredity. Genetics pertains to humans and all other orga...

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Germ: 1. A cell or group of cells (called a primordium) capable of developing into ...

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Germ cell: Either the egg or the sperm cell; a reproductive cell. Each mature germ cell is...

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Gestation: The period of time from conception to birth.

Gynecologic oncologist: A physician who specializes in treating cancers of the female repr...

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Gynecologist: A physician who specializes in treating diseases of the female reproductive ...

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Gynecology: The branch of medicine that is particularly concerned with the health of the f...

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Heart: The muscle that pumps blood received from veins into arteries throughout the body. ...

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Heart disease: Any disorder that affects the heart. Sometimes the term "heart disease" is ...

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Heart failure: Inability of the heart to keep up with the demands on it and, specifically...

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Hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancer: (HNPCC) An hereditary cancer syndrome which carries ...

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Hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer: See: Hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancer.

HNPCC: Hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancer.

Hormone: A chemical substance produced in the body that controls and regulates the activit...

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Hysterectomy: An operation to remove the uterus. Hysterectomies are most commonly performe...

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Incidence: The frequency with which something, such as a disease or trait, appears in a pa...

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Incision: A cut through skin or other tissue performed by a health care professional.

Indicate: In medicine, to make a treatment or procedure advisable because of a particular ...

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Infertile: Not able to conceive after a year of regular intercourse without contraception....

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Intraperitoneal: Within the peritoneal cavity, the area that contains the abdominal organs...

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Irradiation: The use of high-energy radiation from x-rays, gamma rays, neutrons, and other...

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Lactose: The sugar found in milk. Lactose is a large sugar molecule that is made up of two...

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Lactose intolerance: The inability to digest lactose, a component of milk and some other d...

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Laparoscopic: 1. Pertaining to the procedure of laparoscopy.
2. Pert...

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Laparoscopy: A type of surgery in which small incisions are made in the abdominal wall thr...

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Laparotomy: An operation to open the abdomen. For example, laparotomy is used to remove ca...

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Lifetime risk: The risk of developing a disease during ones lifetime or dying of the disea...

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Liver: The largest solid organ in the body, situated in the upper part of the abdomen on t...

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Liver disease: Liver disease refers to any disorder of the liver. The liver is a large org...

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Lungs: The lungs are a pair of breathing organs located with the chest which remove carbon...

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Lymph: The almost colorless fluid that travels through the lymphatic system, carrying cell...

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Lynch syndrome: See: Hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancer.

Malignant: 1. Tending to be severe and become progressively worse, as in malignant ...

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Marker: A piece of DNA that lies on a chromosome so close to a gene that the marker and t...

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Menopause: The time in a woman's life when menstrual periods permanently stop; it is also ...

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Menstrual: Pertaining to menstruation (the menses), as in last menstrual period, menstrua...

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Menstrual irregularity: The normal menstrual cycle is about four weeks long, and often fo...

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Menstruation: The periodic blood that flows as a discharge from the uterus. Also called me...

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Metastasis: 1. The process by which cancer spreads from the place at which it firs...

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Microscope: An optical instrument that augments the power of the eye to see small objects....

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Microscopic: An object so small it cannot be seen without the aid of microscope (for examp...

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Mumps: An acute (sudden, shortlived) viral illness that usually presents with inflammation...

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Mutation: A permanent change, a structural alteration, in the DNA or RNA. In humans and m...

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Nausea: Stomach queasiness, the urge to vomit. Nausea can be brought on by many causes, in...

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Obstetrics: The art and science of managing pregnancy, labor, and the puerperium (the time...

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Omentum: A sheet of fat that is covered by peritoneum. The greater omentum is attached to ...

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Oncologist: A physician who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. After a ...

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Operation: In medicine, a surgical procedure. Many operations are named after persons. The...

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Ova: Plural of ovum.

Ovarian: Of or pertaining to the ovary.

Ovarian cancer: A malignant tumor of the ovary, the egg sac in a female. Women who have a ...

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Ovary: The female gonad, one of a pair of reproductive glands in women. The ovaries are lo...

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Ovulation: The release of the ripe egg (ovum) from the ovary. The egg is released when the...

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Oxygen: The odorless gas that is present in the air and necessary to maintain life. Oxygen...

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Pain: An unpleasant sensation that can range from mild, localized discomfort to agony. Pa...

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Pancreas: A spongy, tube-shaped organ that is about 6 inches long and is located in the ba...

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Pap Smear: A screening test for cervical cancer based on the examination of cells under th...

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Pathologist: A physician who identifies diseases and conditions by studying abnormal cells...

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Pelvic: Having to do with the pelvis, the lower part of the abdomen, located between the h...

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Pelvic exam: An examination of the organs of the female reproductive system.

Pelvic pain: : Pain perceived in the area of the pelvis, the lower part of the abdomen loc...

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Pelvis: The lower part of the abdomen, located between the hip bones. Structures in the fe...

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Peritoneal: Having to do with the peritoneum.

Pregnancy: The state of carrying a developing embryo or fetus within the female body. Thi...

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Pregnant: The state of carrying a developing fetus within the body.

Progesterone: A female hormone, the principal hormone that prepares the uterus to receive ...

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Prognosis: The forecast of the probable outcome or course of a disease; the patient's chan...

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Quality of life: The patient's ability to enjoy normal life activities. Quality of life is...

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Recurrent: Appearing or occurring again. For example, a recurrent fever is a fever that ha...

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Resection: Surgical removal of part of an organ.

Residual: Something left behind. With residual disease, the disease has not been eradicate...

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Salpingo-oophorectomy: Removal of the fallopian tubes and ovaries.

Scan: As a noun, the data or image obtained from the examination of organs or regions of...

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Shortness of breath: Difficulty in breathing. Medically referred to as dyspnea. Shortness ...

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Sperm: A sperm is the male "gamete" or sex cell. It combines with the female &qu...

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Spleen: An organ that is located in the upper-left part of the abdomen, not far from the s...

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Stage: As regards cancer, the extent of a cancer, especially whether the disease has spre...

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Staging: stagingDoing exams and tests to learn the extent of a cancer, especially whether ...

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Stomach: The digestive organ that is located in the upper abdomen, under the ribs. The upp...

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Stromal: Pertaining to the stroma of an organ. See: Stroma.

Surgeon: A physician who treats disease, injury, or deformity via operative or manual meth...

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Surgery: The branch of medicine that employs operations in the treatment of disease or inj...

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Symptom: Any subjective evidence of disease. In contrast, a sign is objective. Blood comin...

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Syndrome: A combination of symptoms and signs that together represent a disease process.

Talc: A very soft, soapy-feeling mineral that is a silicate of magnesium, sometimes with s...

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Therapy: The treatment of disease. Therapy is synonymous with treatment.

Tomography: The process for generating a tomogram, a two-dimensional image of a slice or s...

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Tubes: The "tubes" are medically known as the Fallopian tubes. There are two Fallopian tub...

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Tumor: An abnormal mass of tissue. Tumors are a classic sign of inflammation, and can be ...

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Tumor marker: A substance that can be detected in higher-than-normal amounts in the blood,...

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Ultrasound: High-frequency sound waves. Ultra-sound waves can be bounced off tissues by us...

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Urinary: Having to do with the function or anatomy of the kidneys, ureters, bladder, or ur...

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Uterus: A hollow, pear-shaped organ that is located in a woman's lower abdomen, between th...

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Virus: A microorganism that is smaller than a bacterium that cannot grow or reproduce apar...

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Viruses: Small living particles that can infect cells and change how the cells function. I...

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Womb: The womb (uterus) is a hollow, pear-shaped organ located in a woman's lower abdomen ...

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X-ray: High-energy radiation with waves shorter than those of visible light. X-ray is used...

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