the part of the throat that lies above and behind the soft palate, behind the structures of the nose. Compare to oropharynx, pharynx.
the death of one or more cells of the body. Necrotic refers to tissue that has died.
to draw out a liquid, gas, or tissue fragments using suction. In this procedure, a needle is used to reach the cyst or tumor, and with suction, draw up (aspirate) samples to be looked at under a microscope. See also biopsy, needle biopsy.
removal of fluid, cells, or tissue with a needle so that it can be looked at under a microscope. The main types of needle biopsy are fine needle aspiration (FNA) and core biopsy. FNA uses a thin needle to draw up (aspirate) fluid or small tissue pieces from a cyst or tumor. A core needle biopsy uses a thicker needle to remove a core of tissue from a tumor. See also biopsy, needle aspiration.
a procedure used to guide a surgical biopsy when the lump is hard to find or when there are areas that look suspicious on the x-ray but there is no distinct lump. A thin needle is placed into the area. X-rays are taken and used to guide the needle to the suspicious area. The surgeon then uses the path of the needle as a guide to find the abnormal area to be removed. See also biopsy, x-ray.
a result from lab tests or pathology findings in which the abnormality being looked for was not found. When lymph nodes or other tissues are found to be negative for cancer, it means that no cancer was found there. See also lymph nodes.
see surgical margin.
treatment given before the main treatment. For example, neoadjuvant hormone therapy is sometimes used to shrink a prostate tumor before brachytherapy to make the brachytherapy more effective. Compare to adjuvant therapy. See also brachytherapy, hormone therapy, prostate.
a doctor who specializes in the care of the newborn baby (until they are about 6 weeks old).
the process of forming an abnormal new growth. The growth can be benign (not cancer) or malignant (cancer). See also neoplasm, tumor.
an abnormal growth (tumor) that starts from a single altered cell. A neoplasm may be benign (not cancer) or malignant (cancer). Such a growth may be described as a neoplastic (NEE-o-plas-tik) tumor. See also cancer, mutation, tumor.
a doctor who specializes in diseases of the kidneys.
surgery to remove the prostate in which the surgeon tries to save a man’s ability to have erections by leaving in the neurovascular bundles that control that function. See also neurovascular bundle, prostate, radical prostatectomy.
nerve abnormality or damage which causes numbness, tingling, pain, muscle weakness, or even swelling. It may be caused by injury, infection, disease (cancer, diabetes, kidney failure, or poor nutrition, for example), or by drugs. Peripheral neuropathy is a type of neuropathy that starts in nerves farthest away from the brain, such as the hands and feet.
a doctor specializing in operations to treat nervous system disorders, which includes problems in the brain, spinal cord, and nerves. See also spinal cord.
groups of nerves and blood vessels that run along each side of the prostate and help the penis become erect. Removal or injury of these bundles during surgery, or damage from radiation therapy, can lead to impotence. Women also have these nerve bundles that run along both sides of the vagina and affect erectile tissue in the genital area. See also impotence, nerve-sparing prostatectomy, prostate.
a decrease in the number of neutrophils (white blood cells that respond quickly to infection) in the blood. If a person has less than 1,500 cells/mm3 neutrophils, he or she is considered to be neutropenic and at risk for infection. With fewer than 500 cells/mm3 the risk of infection is very high and gets higher the longer the neutropenia lasts. See also white blood cells.
white blood cells that fight bacteria infections. See also white blood cells.
the tip of the breast; the pigmented projection (bump) in the center of the areola. The nipple contains the opening of milk ducts from the breast. See also areola, duct.
an inward turning of the nipple of the breast.
any fluid of any color coming from the nipple.
excessive urination during the night.
indicates whether the cancer has spread to lymph nodes (node-positive) or has not spread to lymph nodes (node-negative). See also lymph node.
see lymph node.
a small, solid lump that can be felt. This term is sometimes used to refer to a small tumor seen on x-ray. See also tumor, x-ray.
formerly called non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. A cancer of the lymphatic system (a network of thin vessels and nodes throughout the body that serves as part of the immune system). The difference between non-Hodgkin lymphoma and Hodgkin disease is the Reed-Sternberg cell, which is absent in non-Hodgkin lymphoma cells. See also Hodgkin disease, immune system, lymphatic system.
all cancers other than myeloid leukemias. Non-myeloid cancers include all types of carcinoma, all types of sarcoma, melanoma, lymphomas, lymphocytic leukemias (ALL and CLL), and multiple myeloma. See also carcinoma, leukemia, lymphoma, melanoma, multiple myeloma, myeloid leukemia, sarcoma.
also called NSCLC. One of the main classes or categories of lung cancer, based on how the cells look under the microscope. Non-small cell lung cancer includes 3 major types: squamous cell (or epidermoid) carcinoma, adenocarcinoma, and large cell (undifferentiated) carcinoma of the lung. See also carcinoma. Compare to small cell lung cancer.
-uh-tor-ee or an
also called NSAIDs. Pain relievers and fever reducers in the family of aspirin, ibuprofen (Motrin®, Advil®), naproxen (Aleve®), and many others. Some studies have found that these drugs may lower the risk of colorectal cancer and adenomatous polyps. But the drugs can also irritate the stomach and cause bleeding and other side effects; some have been linked to higher risk of stroke and heart attack. See also colorectal cancer, polyp, familial adenomatous polyposis.
a branch of medicine that uses radioactive substances (radioisotopes) to diagnose and treat illnesses. See also radioisotope.
a method for finding diseases of internal organs such as the brain, liver, or bone. Small amounts of a radioactive substance (called an isotope) are put into the bloodstream. The isotope collects in certain organs and a special camera called a scintillation camera is used to make a picture of the organ and show areas of disease. See also radioisotope.
the center of a cell where the deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is found and where it reproduces. Studying the size and shape of a cell’s nucleus under the microscope can help pathologists tell cancer cells from non-cancer cells. See also cell, deoxyribonucleic acid, pathologist.
never having given birth to a child.
a registered nurse with a master’s or doctoral degree and special certification. Nurse practitioners diagnose and manage illness and disease, usually working closely with doctors.