Small-Cell Lung Cancer Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Small-Cell Lung Cancer article.

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

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

American Medical Association: The AMA. The AMA's mission statement proclaims:

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

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Aspiration: Removal by suction of fluid and cells through a needle. Aspiration also refer...

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Back pain: Pain felt in the low or upper back. Causes of pain in the low and upper back in...

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

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Blood count: The calculated number of white or red blood cells (WBCs or RBCs) in a cubic m...

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Bone marrow: The soft blood-forming tissue that fills the cavities of bones and contains f...

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Bone scan: A nuclear medicine technique for creating images of bones on a computer screen ...

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Brain: The portion of the central nervous system that is located within the skull. It func...

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

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Bronchi: The plural of bronchus.

Bronchoscope: A thin, flexible instrument with a lighted viewing tube that is used to visu...

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Bronchoscopy: A procedure that permits the doctor to see the breathing passages through a...

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Calcium: A mineral found mainly in the hard part of bones, where it is stored. Calcium is ...

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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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Cardiac: Having to do with the heart.

CBC: A commonly used abbreviation in medicine that stands for complete blood count, a set...

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

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Chest: The area of the body located between the neck and the abdomen. The chest contains t...

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Chest pain: Pain in the chest that can be a result of many things, including angina, heart...

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Chest X-ray: A type of X-ray commonly used to detect abnormalities in the lungs. A chest X...

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Cisplatin: An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called platinum compound...

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Clinical trials: Trials to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of medications or medical...

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Complete blood count: A set values of the cellular (formed elements) of blood. These meas...

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Compression: 1. The act of pressing together. As in a compression fracture, nerve c...

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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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Computerized tomography: Pictures of structures within the body created by a computer that...

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Contrast: Short for "contrast media." Contrast media are X-ray dyes used to provide contra...

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Cough: A rapid expulsion of air from the lungs, typically in order to clear the lung airwa...

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Coughing up blood: see hemoptysis.

Cranial: 1. Pertaining to the cranium or skull. 2. Toward the head. As oppo...

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

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Curable: Amenable to a cure, capable of being cured, to being healed and made well. From ...

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Cytology: The medical and scientific study of cells. Cytology refers to a branch of pathol...

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

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DNA: Deoxyribonucleic acid. One of two types of molecules that encode genetic information...

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Duplication: Part of a chromosome in duplicate, a particular kind of mutation (change) inv...

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Effusion: Too much fluid, an outpouring of fluid. For example, a pleural effusion is an ab...

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

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Esophagus: The tube that connects the pharynx (throat) with the stomach. The esophagus lie...

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External radiation therapy: Radiation therapy in which the source of radiation is a machin...

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Fatigue: A condition characterized by a lessened capacity for work and reduced efficiency ...

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Genetic: Having to do with genes and genetic
information.

Group therapy: 1) A type of psychiatric care in which several patients meet with one or m...

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Headache: A pain in the head with the pain being above the eyes or the ears, behind the he...

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Hoarseness: Hoarseness is a term referring to abnormal voice changes. Hoarseness may be ma...

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Hospice: A program or facility that provides special care for people who are near the end ...

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Incurable: Not amenable to a cure. Incapable of being cured, healed and made well again. ...

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Internal radiation therapy: Radiation therapy in which a small container of radioactive ma...

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

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Kidney: One of a pair of organs located in the right and left side of the abdomen. The kid...

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Lesion: An area of abnormal tissue change. Lesions vary in severity from harmless to serio...

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Limb: An arm or a leg.

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

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Lung cancer: Cancer of the major organ of respiration - the lung. Lung cancer is one of th...

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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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Magnesium: A mineral involved in many processes in the body including nerve signaling, the...

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Marrow: The bone marrow.

Median: The middle, as in the median strip in a highway. For example, the median nerve is ...

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Mediastinoscopy: A procedure in which the physician inserts a tube into the chest to view ...

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Mediastinum: The area between the lungs. The organs in the mediastinum include the heart a...

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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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Mouth: 1. The upper opening of the digestive tract, beginning with the lips and con...

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MRI: Magnetic resonance imaging.

National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship: A survivor-led advocacy group that works on be...

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

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Neck: The part of the body joining the head to the shoulders. Also, any narrow or constric...

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Nerve: A bundle of fibers that uses electrical and chemical signals to transmit sensory an...

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Nicotine: An alkaloid (a nitrogen-containing chemical) made by the tobacco plant or produc...

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Nose: The external midline projection from the face. The purpose of the nose is to warm, c...

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Nurse: 1) A person trained, licensed, or skilled in nursing. 2) To feed an infant at the ...

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Nursing: 1) Profession concerned with the provision of services essential to the maintena...

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Nursing home: A residential facility for people with chronic illness or disability, partic...

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Oat cell cancer: A type of lung cancer in which the cells are small, round and resemble oa...

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

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Oncology: The field of medicine that is devoted to cancer. Clinical oncology consists of t...

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Organ: A relatively independent part of the body that carries out one or more special func...

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

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Palliative care: Medical or comfort care that reduces the severity of a disease or slows i...

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Palliative treatment: To palliate a disease is to treat it partially and insofar as possib...

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Paralysis: Loss of voluntary movement (motor function). Paralysis that affects only one mu...

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

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Periphery: 1. The outside or surface of a structure; the portion outside the centr...

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Pleural: Pertaining to the pleura, the thin covering that protects the lungs. The term "pl...

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Pleural effusion: Excess fluid between the two membranes that cover the lungs (the viscera...

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Prevalence: The proportion of individuals in a population having a disease or characterist...

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

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Prophylactic: A preventive measure. The word comes from the Greek for "an advance guard," ...

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Prophylactic cranial irradiation: Radiation therapy to the head that is intended to preven...

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

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Radiation: 1. Rays of energy. Gamma rays and X-rays are two of the types of energy ...

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Radiation therapy: The use of high-energy rays to damage cancer cells, stopping them from ...

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Radioactive: Emitting energy waves due to decaying atomic nuclei. Radioactive substances a...

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Radionuclide: An unstable form of a chemical element that radioactively decays, resulting ...

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Radiotherapy: The treatment of disease with ionizing radiation. Also called radiation ther...

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Radon: A radioactive element that is formed, as a gas, during the breakdown of radium. Rad...

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Refractory: Not yielding, or not yielding readily, to treatment.

Regimen: A plan or a regulated course, such as a diet, exercise, or treatment, that is des...

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Relapse: The return of signs and symptoms of a disease after a remission.

Remission: Disappearance of the signs and symptoms of cancer or other disease. A remission...

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Renal: Having to do with the kidney. For example, renal cancer is cancer of the kidneys.

Respiratory: Having to do with respiration.

Risk factor: Something that increases a person's chances of developing a disease. For exam...

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

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Serum: The clear liquid that can be separated from clotted blood. Serum differs from plas...

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

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Skull: The skull is a collection of bones which encase the brain and give form to the hea...

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Small cell lung cancer: A type of lung cancer in which the cells appear small and round un...

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Spinal cord: The major column of nerve tissue that is connected to the brain and lies with...

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Spine: 1) The column of bone known as the vertebral column, which surrounds and protects ...

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Sputum: Mucous material from the lungs that is produced (brought up) by coughing.

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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Standard of care: 1. A diagnostic and treatment process that a clinician should fol...

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Stress: In a medical or biological context stress is a physical, mental, or emotional fact...

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Superior vena cava: A large vein that receives blood from the head, neck, upper extremitie...

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

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Systemic: Affecting the entire body. A systemic disease such as diabetes can affect the wh...

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

Thoracentesis: Removal of fluid from the space between the lungs and the chest wall (the p...

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Thorax: The area of the body that is located between the abdomen and the neck. Within the ...

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Tobacco: A South American herb (Nicotiana tabacum) whose leaves contain 2 to 8 percent nic...

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

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Trachea: A tube-like portion of the respiratory tract that connects the larynx with the br...

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

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Uranium: A metallic element that is used as nuclear fuel and is highly toxic and radioacti...

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Vein: A blood vessel that carries blood that is low in oxygen content from the body back t...

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Vena cava: The superior vena cava is the large vein which returns blood to the heart from ...

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Vertebral column: The 33 vertebrae that fit together to form a flexible, yet extraordinari...

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Weight loss: Weight loss is a decrease in body weight resulting from either voluntary (die...

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Windpipe: The trachea, a tube-like portion of the respiratory (breathing) tract that conne...

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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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