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Mesothelioma cancer glossary - T
therapy - Treatment.
thoracentesis - the puncturing of the chest wall to obtain fluid for diagnostic study, drain pleural effusions, or to re-expand a collapsed lung.
thoracoscopy - The use of a fibreoptic scope through a small incision in the chest wall for the purpose of directly observing the organs of the chest
thorascopy - a type of biopsy using a telescope-like instrument called a thorascope connected to a video camera is inserted through a small incision into the chest
thrombocyte - A blood cell that helps prevent bleeding by causing blood clots to form. Also called a platelet.
thrombocytopenia, thrombopenia - A decrease in the number of platelets in the blood that may result in easy bruising and excessive bleeding from wounds or bleeding in mucous membranes and other tissues.
thrombosis - The formation or presence of a blood clot inside a blood vessel.
time to progression - A measure of time after a disease is diagnosed (or treated) until the disease starts to get worse.
TNM staging system - A system for describing the extent of cancer in a patient’s body. T describes the size of the tumor and whether it has invaded nearby tissue, N describes any lymph nodes that are involved, and M describes metastasis (spread of cancer from one body part to another).
total parenteral nutrition - TPN. Intravenous (into a vein) feeding that provides necessary nutrients when a person is unable to eat normally.
total-body irradiation - Radiation therapy to the entire body. Usually followed by bone marrow or peripheral stem cell transplantation.
toxic - Having to do with poison or something harmful to the body. Toxic substances usually cause unwanted side effects.
transformation - The change that a normal cell undergoes as it becomes malignant.
transfusion - The infusion of components of blood or whole blood into the bloodstream. The blood may be donated from another person, or it may have been taken from the person earlier and stored until needed.
transrectal ultrasound - TRUS. A procedure in which a probe that sends out high-energy sound waves is inserted into the rectum. The sound waves are bounced off internal tissues or organs and make echoes. The echoes form a picture of body tissue called a sonogram. TRUS is used to look for abnormalities in the rectum and nearby structures, including the prostate. Also called endorectal ultrasound.
transurethral biopsy - A procedure in which a sample of tissue is removed from the prostate for examination under a microscope. A thin, lighted tube is inserted through the urethra into the prostate, and a small piece of tissue is removed with a cutting loop.
transurethral needle ablation - A procedure that is used to treat benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH). A small probe that gives off low-level radiofrequency energy is inserted through the urethra into the prostate. The energy from the probe heats and destroys the abnormal prostate tissue without damaging the urethra. Also called transurethral radiofrequency ablation.
transurethral resection - Surgery performed with a special instrument inserted through the urethra. Also called TUR.
transurethral resection of the prostate - Surgical procedure to remove tissue from the prostate using an instrument inserted through the urethra. Also called TURP.
treatment field - In radiation therapy, the place on the body where the radiation beam is aimed.
tumor - A mass of excess tissue that results from abnormal cell division. Tumors perform no useful body function. They may be benign (not cancerous) or malignant (cancerous).
tumor board review - A treatment planning approach in which a number of doctors who are experts in different specialties (disciplines) review and discuss the medical condition and treatment options of a patient. In cancer treatment, a tumor board review may include that of a medical oncologist (who provides cancer treatment with drugs), a surgical oncologist (who provides cancer treatment with surgery), and a radiation oncologist (who provides cancer treatment with radiation). Also called a multidisciplinary opinion.
tumor burden - Refers to the number of cancer cells, the size of a tumor, or the amount of cancer in the body. Also called tumor load.
tumor debulking - Surgically removing as much of the tumor as possible.
tumor load - Refers to the number of cancer cells, the size of a tumor, or the amount of cancer in the body. Also called tumor burden.
tumor marker - A substance sometimes found in the blood, other body fluids, or tissues. A high level of tumor marker may mean that a certain type of cancer is in the body. Examples of tumor markers include CA 125 (ovarian cancer), CA 15-3 (breast cancer), CEA (ovarian, lung, breast, pancreas, and gastrointestinal tract cancers), and PSA (prostate cancer). Also called biomarker.
tumor necrosis factor - A type of biological response modifier (a substance that can improve the body's natural response to disease). Three types of tumor necrosis factor have been identified: alpha, beta, and gamma. Tumor necrosis factor seems to play a role in the breakdown of cancer cells.
tumor suppressor gene - Genes in the body that can suppress or block the development of cancer.
tumor-specific antigen - A protein or other molecule that is unique to cancer cells or is much more abundant in them. These molecules are usually found in the plasma (outer) membrane, and they are thought to be potential targets for immunotherapy or other types of anticancer treatment.
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