A tumor marker that can be monitored in the majority of patients
with metastatic breast cancer, indicating the progression, regression
or stability of the disease. Like all the tumor markers, it can
be assessed from a blood sample.
A tumor marker similar to CA 15-3 above, used to monitor disease
progression in metastatic breast cancer. Also known as the Truquant
A tumor marker used to monitor ovarian cancer, highly predictive
of recurrence for most ovarian cancer patients. Also
see in Resources -> Breast
A so-called "wasting syndrome" that often accompanies the very advanced
stages of cancer. This general lack of nutrition is characterized
by weight loss, emaciation, weakness and fatigue, and loss of appetite.
Small calcium deposits that are visible in a
mammogram. Usually not indicative of cancer, but when found in certain
clusters may indicate a possibility of the existence of breast cancer.
A term for any of more than 100 different diseases in which abnormal
cells divide without control. Cancer cells can invade nearby tissues
and can migrate through the bloodstream and lymphatic system to
other parts of the body. Also
see -> Breast
A cell that divides and reproduces abnormally, with uncontrolled
growth, and that may spread to other parts of the body.
Cancer that begins in the skin or in tissues that line or cover
Any substance or agent that can cause cancer.
A disease or disorder of the heart muscle
The amount of blood released in the heart with each heartbeat; this
may be used to measure damage of the heart muscle.
A chronic disorder of the heart muscle, which
can result in heart failure, embolism, enlargement or arrhythmias.
This condition may be a side effect of some drugs used in chemotherapy.
A process which assesses, plans, implements
and monitors services required to meet an individual's health needs
by using and creating resources to promote quality outcomes. The
management team normally consists of all the professionals involved
in the physical and emotion care of the patient.
A protein secreted by breast cancer cells, thought to indicate a
A tube passed through the body for evacuating
fluids or injecting them into body cavities. It may be made of elastic,
elastic web, rubber, glass, metal, or plastic. (See Indwelling Catheter)
A monoclonal tumor marker sometimes used to
monitor breast cancer patients for recurrences. It may indicate
other cancers and certain inflammatory conditions and is not considered
specific enough to be the sole indicator.
A microscopic structure that is the basic unit of all living organisms.
Fluid which surrounds the brain and spinal cord.
Process by which chemotherapy drugs are delivered
by infusion directly to the area of the tumor, sometimes used in
treating liver metastases.
Cancer cells develop immunity to chemotherapy
drugs, and are said to be chemoresistant or chemoinsensitive.
Experimental in-vitro (in the laboratory) testing
of tumor tissue to show its response to various cancer drugs. This
test allows the physician to prescribe a drug that will work with
a specific cancer, avoiding chemotherapy treatments that will be
ineffective. Although it is extremely promising, many physicians
feel this testing process is not yet accurate enough for general
Drugs or chemicals that enhance chemotherapy's
Treatment with anticancer drugs or chemicals that are destructive
to cells and tissues. Also
see in Resources -> Chemotherapy.
A DNA molecule containing genes arranged end-to-end in a double
A long term or constant condition.
Breast Exam (CBE)
A screening exam performed by a qualified medical
A research study conducted to test a new drug
or treatment. Each study is designed to test a new method of screening,
prevention, diagnosis, or treatment of a disease. The clinical trial
should identify any negative side effects associated with the method
being tested. Also see in Resources -> Breast
Cancer Clinical Trials.
These are substances that stimulate the production
of blood cells. Colony-stimulating factors include granulocyte colony-stimulating
factors (also called G-CSF and filgrastim), granulocyte-macrophage
colony-stimulating factors (also called GM-CSF and sargramostim),
Using more than one kind of chemotherapy drug
is often more effective than a single agent, because each drug acts
in a different way on the cancer reproductive process. This makes
it less likely that cells resistant to treatment will survive, or
that cells that do survive will be able to repair damage caused
to them by the chemo.
By comparing present mammography films to past
films, the surgeon is able to see changes over time in the breast
Blood Count (CBC)
A blood test that gives results of white and
red cell counts, platelets, hemoglobin and other factors rather
than testing for a single factor..
These plans attempt to make sure that cancer
cells at previous tumor sites are not able to recur by means of
A drug or drugs that are administered continuously,
for example, some kinds of chemotherapy or pain medications, can
be taken through an infusion pump worn by patients 24 hours a day.
Using a large bore needle and a syringe to remove
tissue or fluid from a lump or a cyst for microscopic analysis.
see in Resources -> Breast
A non-surgical procedure for shrinkinging benign tumors. A probe
is inserted into the center of the tumor. Using small amounts of
argon gas, the tumor is killed by literally freezing it to death.
Scan (also called CAT Scan)
Computerized axial tomography, a diagnostic
test, is a computerized multiple x-ray technique that shows cross
sections or a complete three dimensional view of the entire body.
Much more detailed than x-rays, this procedure can produce images
of minutely detailed structures anywhere in the body for analysis.
It usually does not require injection of a radioactive or dye contrast
A class of chemotherapy drugs that promotes cancer cell death.
A round, smooth, fluid filled sac or capsule that is abnormal but
usually noncancerous. A breast cyst often changes size with the
menstrual cycle and caffeine consumption.
The study of cells.
A substance that causes cells to die; literally
toxic to cells. In breast cancer research this refers to drugs that
cause the cancer cells to die.