Glossary of Terms
A substance that is being studied in the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and other types of cancer. It belongs to the family of drugs called farnesyltransferase inhibitors. Also called tipifarnib and Zarnestra.
A human monoclonal antibody being studied in the treatment of several types of cancer. Monoclonal antibodies are made in the laboratory and can locate and bind to substances in the body, including cancer cells. R1507 blocks the action of a protein needed for cell growth and may kill cancer cells. It is a type of insulin-like growth factor-1 receptor (IGF-1R) inhibitor.
listen ( SOH-dee-um) A substance being studied in the treatment of cancer and certain other diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis. It may block tumor cell signaling and growth. It is a type of tyrosine kinase inhibitor. Also called fostamatinib disodium and Syk kinase inhibitor R-935788.
listen (RAY-beez) A disease of the nervous system caused by the rabies virus. Rabies is marked by an increase in saliva production, abnormal behavior, and eventual paralysis and death.
listen (ray-KY-tis) A condition in children in which bones become soft and deformed because they dont have enough calcium and phosphorus. It is caused by not having enough vitamin D in the diet or by not getting enough sunlight. In adults, this condition is called osteomalacia. Also called infantile rickets, juvenile rickets, and rickets.
A substance that has been studied in the treatment of some types of cancer. rAd/p53 is a weakened adenovirus that carries the p53 gene into tumor cells, causing them to die. It is a type of gene therapy. Also called ACN53, recombinant adenovirus-p53, and SCH-58500.
A drug used with exemestane to treat some postmenopausal women with advanced breast cancer that is hormone-receptor positive and HER2 negative. It is also used to treat certain types of pancreatic, lung, and gastrointestinal neuroendocrine tumors that cannot be removed by surgery, are advanced, or have spread to other parts of the body. It is also used to treat advanced renal cell carcinoma (a type of kidney cancer) and subependymal giant cell astrocytoma in some patients, including children. RAD001 is being studied in the treatment of other types of cancer. It stops cancer cells from dividing and may prevent the growth of new blood vessels that tumors need to grow. It also lowers the bodys immune response. RAD001 is a type of kinase inhibitor, a type of angiogenesis inhibitor, and a type of immunosuppressant. Also called Afinitor, Afinitor Disperz, and everolimus.
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun) Energy released in the form of particle or electromagnetic waves. Common sources of radiation include radon gas, cosmic rays from outer space, medical x-rays, and energy given off by a radioisotope (unstable form of a chemical element that releases radiation as it breaks down and becomes more stable).
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun BRAY-kee-THAYR-uh-pee) A type of radiation therapy in which radioactive material sealed in needles, seeds, wires, or catheters is placed directly into or near a tumor. Also called brachytherapy, implant radiation therapy, and internal radiation therapy.
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun DER-muh-TY-tis) A skin condition that is a common side effect of radiation therapy. The affected skin becomes painful, red, itchy, and blistered.
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun EN-teh-RY-tis) Inflammation of the small intestine caused by radiation therapy to the abdomen, pelvis, or rectum. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain and cramping, frequent bowel movements, watery or bloody diarrhea, fatty stools, and weight loss. Some of these symptoms may continue for a long time.
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun fy-BROH-sis) The formation of scar tissue as a result of radiation therapy.
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun neh-KROH-sis) The death of healthy tissue caused by radiation therapy. Radiation necrosis is a side effect of radiation therapy given to kill cancer cells, and can occur after cancer treatment has ended.
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun nurs) A health professional who specializes in caring for people who are receiving radiation therapy.
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun on-KAH-loh-jist) A doctor who specializes in using radiation to treat cancer.
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun FIH-zih-sist) A person who makes sure that the radiation machine delivers the right amount of radiation to the correct site in the body. The physicist works with the radiation oncologist to choose the treatment schedule and dose that has the best chance of killing the most cancer cells.
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun POY-zuh-ning) Serious illness caused by being exposed to high doses of certain types of radiation, usually over a short period of time. Symptoms of radiation poisoning usually occur right after exposure but they may happen over time, and they may come and go. Symptoms include nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, headache, dizziness, weakness, fatigue, bleeding, hair loss, swelling, itching, and redness of the skin, and other skin problems. Very large doses of radiation may cause death. Also called acute radiation sickness, acute radiation syndrome, radiation sickness, and radiation sickness syndrome.
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun SIK-nes) Serious illness caused by being exposed to high doses of certain types of radiation, usually over a short period of time. Symptoms of radiation sickness usually occur right after exposure but they may happen over time, and they may come and go. Symptoms include nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, headache, dizziness, weakness, fatigue, bleeding, hair loss, swelling, itching, and redness of the skin, and other skin problems. Very large doses of radiation may cause death. Also called acute radiation sickness, acute radiation syndrome, radiation poisoning, and radiation sickness syndrome.
radiation sickness syndrome
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun SIK-nes SIN-drome) Serious illness caused by being exposed to high doses of certain types of radiation, usually over a short period of time. Symptoms of radiation sickness syndrome usually occur right after exposure but they may happen over time, and they may come and go. Symptoms include nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, headache, dizziness, weakness, fatigue, bleeding, hair loss, swelling, itching, and redness of the skin, and other skin problems. Very large doses of radiation may cause death. Also called acute radiation sickness, acute radiation syndrome, radiation poisoning, and radiation sickness.
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun SER-juh-ree) A type of external radiation therapy that uses special equipment to position the patient and precisely give a single large dose of radiation to a tumor. It is used to treat brain tumors and other brain disorders that cannot be treated by regular surgery. It is also being studied in the treatment of other types of cancer. Also called radiosurgery, stereotactic radiosurgery, and stereotaxic radiosurgery.
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun THAYR-uh-pist) A health professional who gives radiation treatment.
listen (RAY-dee-AY-shun THAYR-uh-pee) The use of high-energy radiation from x-rays, gamma rays, neutrons, protons, and other sources to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. Radiation may come from a machine outside the body (external-beam radiation therapy), or it may come from radioactive material placed in the body near cancer cells (internal radiation therapy or brachytherapy). Systemic radiation therapy uses a radioactive substance, such as a radiolabeled monoclonal antibody, that travels in the blood to tissues throughout the body. Also called irradiation and radiotherapy.
listen (RA-dih-kul SER-vih-SEK-toh-mee) Surgery to remove the cervix, nearby tissue and lymph nodes, and the upper part of the vagina. It may be used to treat women with early-stage cervical cancer who want to have children. After the cervix is removed, the uterus is attached to the remaining part of the vagina. A special stitch or band is used to act as the cervix and create an opening to the uterus. The stitch or band may be opened or closed as needed. Also called radical trachelectomy.
listen (RA-dih-kul sis-TEK-toh-mee) Surgery to remove all of the bladder (the organ that holds urine) as well as nearby tissues and organs.
listen (RA-dih-kul HIS-teh-REK-toh-mee) Surgery to remove the uterus, cervix, and part of the vagina. The ovaries, fallopian tubes, and nearby lymph nodes may also be removed.
radical local excision
listen (RA-dih-kul LOH-kul ek-SIH-zhun) Surgery to remove a tumor and a large amount of normal tissue surrounding it. Nearby lymph nodes may also be removed.
radical lymph node dissection
listen (RA-dih-kul limf node dy-SEK-shun) A surgical procedure to remove most or all of the lymph nodes that drain lymph from the area around a tumor. The lymph nodes are then examined under a microscope to see if cancer cells have spread to them.
listen (RA-dih-kul ma-STEK-toh-mee) Surgery for breast cancer in which the breast, chest muscles, and all of the lymph nodes under the arm are removed. For many years, this was the breast cancer operation used most often, but it is used rarely now. Doctors consider radical mastectomy only when the tumor has spread to the chest muscles. Also called Halsted radical mastectomy.
listen (RA-dih-kul neh-FREK-toh-mee) Surgery to remove an entire kidney, nearby adrenal gland and lymph nodes, and other surrounding tissue.
radical perineal prostatectomy
listen (RA-dih-kul PAYR-ih-NEE-ul PROS-tuh-TEK-toh-mee) Surgery to remove all of the prostate through an incision between the scrotum and the anus. Nearby lymph nodes are sometimes removed through a separate incision in the wall of the abdomen.
listen (RA-dih-kul PROS-tuh-TEK-toh-mee) Surgery to remove the entire prostate and some of the tissue around it. Nearby lymph nodes may also be removed. In a radical retropubic prostatectomy, an incision (cut) is made in the wall of the lower abdomen. In a radical perineal prostatectomy, an incision (cut) is made in the perineum (the area between the anus and scrotum). In a laparoscopic radical prostatectomy, several small incisions (cuts) are made in the wall of the abdomen. A laparoscope (a thin, tube-like instrument with a light and lens for viewing) is inserted through one opening to guide the surgery. Surgical instruments are inserted through the other openings to do the surgery.
radical retropubic prostatectomy
listen (RA-dih-kul reh-troh-PYOO-bik PROS-tuh-TEK-toh-mee) Surgery to remove all of the prostate and nearby lymph nodes through an incision in the wall of the abdomen.
listen (RA-dih-kul TRAY-kee-LEK-toh-mee) Surgery to remove the cervix, nearby tissue and lymph nodes, and the upper part of the vagina. It may be used to treat women with early-stage cervical cancer who want to have children. After the cervix is removed, the uterus is attached to the remaining part of the vagina. A special stitch or band is used to act as the cervix and create an opening to the uterus. The stitch or band may be opened or closed as needed. Also called radical cervicectomy.
listen (RA-dih-kul vul-VEK-toh-mee) Surgery to remove the entire vulva (the external female genital organs, including the clitoris, vaginal lips, and the opening to the vagina) and nearby lymph nodes.
listen (RAY-dee-oh) A type of wave made when an electric field and a magnetic field are combined. Radio waves are being studied in the treatment of several types of cancer and other conditions. The radio waves are sent through needles inserted into tumor tissue and may kill cancer cells. Radio waves are also used in MRI to create detailed images of areas inside the body.
listen (RAY-dee-oh-AK-tiv...) A drug that contains a radioactive substance and is used to diagnose or treat disease, including cancer. Also called radiopharmaceutical.
listen (RAY-dee-oh-AK-tiv...) Airborne radioactive particles that fall to the ground during and after an atomic bombing, nuclear weapons test, or nuclear plant accident.
listen (RAY-dee-oh-AK-tiv GLOO-kose) A radioactive form of glucose (sugar) often used during a positive emission tomography (PET) scan, a type of imaging test. In PET, a small amount of radioactive glucose is injected into a vein, and a scanner makes a picture of where the glucose is being used in the body. Cancer cells show up brighter in the picture because they are more active and take up more glucose than normal cells do. When used with PET, radioactive glucose helps find cancer cells in the body.
listen (RAY-dee-oh-AK-tiv I-oh-dine) A radioactive form of iodine, often used for imaging tests or to treat an overactive thyroid, thyroid cancer, and certain other cancers. For imaging tests, the patient takes a small dose of radioactive iodine that collects in thyroid cells and certain kinds of tumors and can be detected by a scanner. To treat thyroid cancer, the patient takes a large dose of radioactive iodine, which kills thyroid cells. Radioactive iodine is also used in internal radiation therapy for prostate cancer, intraocular (eye) melanoma, and carcinoid tumors. Radioactive iodine is given by mouth as a liquid or in capsules, by infusion, or sealed in seeds, which are placed in or near the tumor to kill cancer cells.