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Cancer Glossary - S

S-1  
A drug that is being studied for its ability to enhance the effectiveness of fluorouracil and prevent gastrointestinal side effects caused by fluorouracil. It belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.
S-phase fraction  
A measure of the percentage of cells in a tumor that are in the phase of the cell cycle during which DNA is synthesized. The S-phase fraction may be used with the proliferative index to give a more complete understanding of how fast a tumor is growing.
saline  
A solution of salt and water.
salivary glands  (SAL-ih-vair-ee)
Glands in the mouth that produce saliva.
salpingo-oophorectomy  (sal-PIN-go o-o-for-EK-toe-mee)
Surgical removal of the fallopian tubes and ovaries.
salvage therapy  
Treatment that is given after the cancer has not responded to other treatments.
samarium 153  
A radioactive substance used in cancer therapy.
saponin  
A substance found in soybeans and many other plants. Saponins may help lower cholesterol and may have anticancer effects.
saquinavir mesylate  
A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called protease inhibitors. It interferes with the ability of a virus to make copies of itself.
sarCNU  
An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.
sarcoma  
A cancer of the bone, cartilage, fat, muscle, blood vessels, or other connective or supportive tissue.
sargramostim  
A colony-stimulating factor that stimulates the production of white blood cells, especially granulocytes and macrophages, and cells (in the bone marrow) that are precursors of platelets. It is a cytokine that belongs to the family of drugs called hematopoietic (blood-forming) agents. Also called granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF).
SC-70935  
A growth factor used to stimulate the production of blood cells during cancer chemotherapy. Also called leridistim.
scans  
Pictures of structures inside the body. Scans often used in diagnosing, staging, and monitoring disease include liver scans, bone scans, and computed tomography (CT) or computerized axial tomography (CAT) scans and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans. In liver scanning and bone scanning, radioactive substances that are injected into the bloodstream collect in these organs. A scanner that detects the radiation is used to create pictures. In CT scanning, an x-ray machine linked to a computer is used to produce detailed pictures of organs inside the body. MRI scans use a large magnet connected to a computer to create pictures of areas inside the body.
SCH 54031  
An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called biological response modifiers. SCH 54031 is a cytokine. Also called PEG-interferon alfa-2b.
SCH 66336  
An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called enzyme inhibitors.
SCH-58500  
A drug that inhibits the growth of tumor cells that express the mutated p53 gene.
Schiller test  (SHIL-er)
A test in which iodine is applied to the cervix. The iodine colors healthy cells brown; abnormal cells remain unstained, usually appearing white or yellow.
schwannoma  (shwah-NO-ma)
A tumor of the peripheral nervous system that begins in the nerve sheath (protective covering). It is almost always benign, but rare malignant schwannomas have been reported.
scientist  
A person who has studied science, especially one who is active in a particular field of investigation.
scleroderma  
A chronic disorder marked by hardening and thickening of the skin. Scleroderma can be localized or it can affect the entire body (systemic).
screening  
Checking for disease when there are no symptoms.
scrotum  (SKRO-tum)
In males, the external sac that contains the testicles.
Scutellaria barbata  
An herb used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat certain medical problems. It may have anticancer effects.
sebum  (SEE-bum)
An oily substance produced by certain glands in the skin.
second cancer  
Refers to a new primary cancer that is caused by previous cancer treatment, or a new primary cancer in a person with a history of cancer.
second-look surgery  
Surgery performed after primary treatment to determine whether tumor cells remain.
secondary cancer  
Cancer that has spread from the organ in which it first appeared to another organ. For example, breast cancer cells may spread (metastasize) to the lungs and cause the growth of a new tumor. When this happens, the disease is called metastatic breast cancer, and the tumor in the lungs is called a secondary tumor. Also called secondary tumor.
secondary tumor  
Cancer that has spread from the organ in which it first appeared to another organ. For example, breast cancer cells may spread (metastasize) to the lungs and cause the growth of a new tumor. When this happens, the disease is called metastatic breast cancer and the tumor in the lungs is called a secondary tumor. Also called secondary cancer.
sedoxantrone trihydrochloride  
A substance that is being studied as a treatment for cancer. It belongs to the family of drugs called DNA-intercalating compounds. Also called CI-958.
segmental cystectomy  (sis-TEK-to-mee)
The removal of cancer as well as some of the bladder tissue around the tumor. Sometimes called partial cystectomy.
segmental mastectomy  (mas-TEK-toe-mee)
The removal of a cancer as well as some of the breast tissue around the tumor and the lining over the chest muscles below the tumor. Usually some of the lymph nodes under the arm are also taken out. Also called partial mastectomy.
seizures  (SEE-zhurz)
Convulsions; sudden, involuntary movements of the muscles.
selection bias  
An error in choosing the individuals or groups to take part in a study. Ideally, the subjects in a study should be very similar to one another and to the larger population from which they are drawn (for example, all individuals with the same disease or condition). If there are important differences, the results of the study may not be valid.
selective estrogen receptor modulator  (sel-EK-tiv ESS-tro-jen re-SEP-tor MOD-yew-lay-tor)
SERM. A drug that acts like estrogen on some tissues but blocks the effect of estrogen on other tissues. Tamoxifen and raloxifene are SERMs.
selenium  
An essential dietary mineral.
sella turcica  
A depression of the bone at the base of the skull where the pituitary gland is located.
semen  
The fluid that is released through the penis during orgasm. Semen is made up of sperm from the testicles and fluid from the prostate and other sex glands.
seminal fluid  
Fluid from the prostate and other sex glands that helps transport sperm out of the man's body during orgasm. Seminal fluid contains sugar as an energy source for sperm.
seminal vesicles  (SEM-in-al VES-ih-kulz)
Glands that help produce semen.
seminoma  (sem-in-O-ma)
A type of cancer of the testicles.
semustine  
An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.
senega root  
The root of an herb called Polygala senega. It has been used in some cultures to treat certain medical problems, including problems of the respiratory system.
senile keratosis  
A precancerous condition of thick, scaly patches of skin. Also called solar or actinic keratosis.
sensory  
Having to do with the senses.
sentinel lymph node  
The first lymph node that cancer is likely to spread to from the primary tumor. Cancer cells may appear first in the sentinel node before spreading to other lymph nodes.
sentinel lymph node biopsy  
Procedure in which a dye or radioactive substance is injected near the tumor and flows into the sentinel lymph nodes(s) (the first lymph node(s) that cancer is likely to spread to from the primary tumor). A surgeon then looks for the dye or uses a scanner to find the sentinel lymph node(s) and removes it (or them) to check for the presence of tumor cells.
sentinel lymph node mapping  
The use of dyes and radioactive substances to identify the first lymph node to which cancer is likely to spread from the primary tumor. Cancer cells may appear first in the sentinel node before spreading to other lymph nodes and other places in the body.
sepsis  (SEP-sis)
The presence of bacteria in the bloodstream.
septate  (SEP-tate)
An organ or structure that is divided into compartments.
sequential treatment  
One treatment after the other.
SERM  
Selective estrogen receptor modulator. A drug that acts like estrogen on some tissues but blocks the effect of estrogen on other tissues. Tamoxifen and raloxifene are SERMs.
serous  (SEER-us)
Having to do with serum, the clear liquid part of blood.
serum  
The clear liquid part of the blood that remains after blood cells and clotting proteins have been removed.
serum albumin  
The main protein in blood plasma. Low levels of serum albumin occur in people with malnutrition, inflammation, and serious liver and kidney disease.
Sezary syndrome  
A form of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma, a cancerous disease that affects the skin.
sham therapy  
An inactive treatment or procedure that is intended to mimic as closely as possible a therapy in a clinical trial. Also called placebo therapy.
shave biopsy  (BY-ahp-see)
A procedure in which the parts of a mole that are above and just below the surface of the skin are removed with a small blade. There is no need for stitches with this procedure.
shunt  
A surgically created diversion of fluid (e.g., blood or cerebrospinal fluid) from one area of the body to another area of the body.
sialic acid  
A type of sugar molecule.
sialyl Tn-KLH  
A vaccine composed of a substance that enhances immunity plus an antigen found on some tumors of the colon, breast, lung, ovary, pancreas, and stomach.
side effects  
Problems that occur when treatment affects healthy cells. Common side effects of cancer treatment are fatigue, nausea, vomiting, decreased blood cell counts, hair loss, and mouth sores.
sigmoidoscope  (sig-MOY-da-skope)
A thin, lighted tube used to view the inside of the colon.
sigmoidoscopy  (sig-moid-OSS-ko-pee)
Inspection of the lower colon using a thin, lighted tube called a sigmoidoscope. Samples of tissue or cells may be collected for examination under a microscope. Also called proctosigmoidoscopy.
signet ring cell carcinoma  
A highly malignant type of cancer typically found in glandular cells that line the digestive organs. The cells resemble signet rings when examined under a microscope.
SIL  
Squamous intraepithelial lesion. A general term for the abnormal growth of squamous cells on the surface of the cervix. The changes in the cells are described as low grade or high grade, depending on how much of the cervix is affected and how abnormal the cells appear.
silicone  
A synthetic gel that is used as an outer coating on breast implants and as the inside filling of some implants.
simple mastectomy  
Removal of the breast. Also called total mastectomy.
simulation  
In cancer treatment, a process used to plan radiation therapy so that the target area is precisely located and marked.
single blind study  
A type of clinical trial in which only the doctor knows whether a patient is taking the standard treatment or the new treatment being tested. This helps prevent bias in treatment studies.
sirolimus  
A drug used to help prevent rejection of organ and bone marrow transplants by the body.
skeletal  
Having to do with the skeleton (boney part of the body).
skeleton  
The framework that supports the soft tissues of vertebrate animals and protects many of their internal organs. The skeletons of vertebrates are made of bone and/or cartilage.
skin graft  
Skin that is moved from one part of the body to another.
skin patch  
A bandage-like patch that releases medicine into the body through the skin. The medicine enters the blood slowly and steadily.
skin stimulation  
The process of applying pressure, friction, temperature change, or chemical substances to the skin to lessen or block a feeling of pain.
skin test  
A test for an immune response to a compound by placing it on or under the skin.
small cell lung cancer  
A type of lung cancer in which the cells appear small and round when viewed under the microscope. Also called oat cell lung cancer.
small intestine  
The part of the digestive tract that is located between the stomach and the large intestine.
smoldering leukemia  
Disease in which the bone marrow does not function normally. Also called preleukemia or myelodysplastic syndrome.
SMT-487  
A substance that is being studied as a treatment for cancer. It belongs to the family of drugs called somatostatin analogs.
SnET2  
An anticancer drug that is also used in cancer prevention. It belongs to the family of drugs called photosensitizing agents. Also called tin ethyl etiopurpurin.
SNX 111  
A drug used in the treatment of chronic pain. Also called ziconotide.
social worker  
A professional trained to talk with people and their families about emotional or physical needs, and find them support services.
sodium  
A mineral needed by the body to keep body fluids in balance. Sodium is found in table salt and in many processed foods. Too much sodium can cause the body to retain water.
sodium salicylate  
A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Sodium salicylate may be tolerated by people who are sensitive to aspirin.
sodium sulfite  
A chemical used in photography, paper making, water treatment, and for other purposes.
soft diet  
A diet consisting of bland foods that are softened by cooking, mashing, pureeing, or blending.
soft tissue  
Refers to muscle, fat, fibrous tissue, blood vessels, or other supporting tissue of the body.
soft tissue sarcoma  (TISH-oo sar-KO-ma)
A sarcoma that begins in the muscle, fat, fibrous tissue, blood vessels, or other supporting tissue of the body.
solar keratosis  
A precancerous condition of thick, scaly patches of skin. Also called actinic or senile keratosis.
solid tumor  
Cancer of body tissues other than blood, bone marrow, or the lymphatic system.
somatic cells  
All the body cells except the reproductive (germ) cells.
somatic mutations  
Alterations in DNA that occur after conception. Somatic mutations can occur in any of the cells of the body except the germ cells (sperm and egg) and therefore are not passed on to children. These alterations can (but do not always) cause cancer or other diseases.
somnolence syndrome  (SOM-no-lens)
Periods of drowsiness, lethargy, loss of appetite, and irritability in children following radiation therapy treatments to the head.
sonogram  (SON-o-gram)
A computer picture of areas inside the body created when sound waves bounce off organs and other tissues. Also called ultrasonogram or ultrasound.
specific immune cells  
Immune cells such as T and B lymphocytes that respond to a single, specific antigen.
speculum  (SPEK-yoo-lum)
An instrument used to widen an opening of the body to make it easier to look inside.
speech pathologist  (pa-THOL-o-jist)
A specialist who evaluates and treats people with communication and swallowing problems. Also called a speech therapist.
speech therapist  
A specialist who evaluates and treats people with communication and swallowing problems. Also called a speech pathologist.
sperm banking  
Freezing sperm for use in the future. This procedure can allow men to father children after loss of fertility.
sperm retrieval  
The doctor removes sperm from a man's testis or epididymis using a fine needle or another instrument.
SPF  
Sun protection factor. A scale for rating the level of sunburn protection in sunscreen products. The higher the SPF, the more sunburn protection it provides. Sunscreens with an SPF value of 2 through 11 provide minimal protection against sunburns. Sunscreens with an SPF of 12 through 29 provide moderate protection, which is adequate for most people. Those with an SPF of 30 or higher provide high protection against sunburn and are sometimes recommended for people who are highly sensitive to the sun.
spiculated mass  (SPIK-you-lay-ted...)
A lump of tissue with spikes or points on the surface.
spinal tap  
A procedure in which a needle is put into the lower part of the spinal column to collect cerebrospinal fluid or to give anticancer drugs intrathecally. Also called a lumbar puncture.
spindle cell cancer  
Cancer that arises in cells that appear spindle-shaped when viewed under a microscope. These cancers can occur in various places in the body, including the skin, lungs, kidney, breast, gastrointestinal tract, bone, and muscle.
spindle cell sarcoma  
A type of connective tissue cancer in which the cells are spindle-shaped when examined under a microscope.
spiral CT scan  
A detailed picture of areas inside the body. The pictures are created by a computer linked to an x-ray machine that scans the body in a spiral path. Also called helical computed tomography.
spleen  
An organ that is part of the lymphatic system. The spleen produces lymphocytes, filters the blood, stores blood cells, and destroys old blood cells. It is located on the left side of the abdomen near the stomach.
splenectomy  (splen-EK-toe-mee)
An operation to remove the spleen.
sputum  
Mucus coughed up from the lungs.
squalamine lactate  
A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors. It prevents the growth of new blood vessels into a solid tumor.
squamous cell carcinoma  (SKWAY-mus. . .kar-sin-O-ma)
Cancer that begins in squamous cells, which are thin, flat cells resembling fish scales. Squamous cells are found in the tissue that forms the surface of the skin, the lining of the hollow organs of the body, and the passages of the respiratory and digestive tracts. Also called epidermoid carcinoma.
squamous cells  (SKWAY-mus)
Flat cells that look like fish scales under a microscope. These cells cover internal and external surfaces of the body.
squamous intraepithelial lesion  (SKWAY-mus in-tra-eh-pih-THEEL-ee-ul LEE-zhun)
SIL. A general term for the abnormal growth of squamous cells on the surface of the cervix. The changes in the cells are described as low grade or high grade, depending on how much of the cervix is affected and how abnormal the cells appear.
SR-29142  
A drug that may protect healthy tissue from the toxic effects of anticancer drugs.
SR-45023A  
An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called bisphosphonates. It affects cancer cell receptors governing cell growth and cell death.
SR49059  
An anticancer drug that inhibits a hormone growth factor responsible for stimulating some cancer cells to multiply.
St. John's wort  
Hypericum perforatum, an herbal product sold as an over-the-counter treatment for depression. It is being studied for its ability to lessen certain side effects of cancer treatment.
stable disease  
Cancer that is neither decreasing nor increasing in extent or severity.
stage  
The extent of a cancer within the body, especially whether the disease has spread from the original site to other parts of the body.
stage 0 chronic lymphocytic leukemia  
Too many lymphocytes are in the blood but there are usually no other symptoms of leukemia.
stage I adrenocortical cancer  
Cancer that is smaller than 5 centimeters (smaller than 2 inches) and has not spread into tissues around the adrenal gland.
stage I anal cancer  
Cancer that has spread beyond the top layer of anal tissue and is smaller than 2 centimeters (smaller than 1 inch).
stage I bladder cancer  
Cancer that has spread into the inner lining of the bladder but not to the muscular wall of the bladder.
stage I breast cancer  
Cancer no bigger than 2 centimeters (about 1 inch) that has not spread outside the breast.
stage I cancer of the cervix  
Cancer that involves the cervix but has not spread to nearby tissues. In stage IA cancer of the cervix, a very small amount of cancer that is only visible under a microscope is found deeper in the tissues of the cervix. In stage IB cancer, a larger amount of cancer is found in the tissues of the cervix.
stage I cancer of the esophagus  
Cancer that is found in the lining of the esophagus but has not spread to nearby tissues, lymph nodes, or other organs.
stage I cancer of the uterus  
Cancer found in only the main part of the uterus, not the cervix.
stage I cancer of the vulva  
Cancer found in the vulva only or the space between the opening of the rectum and the vagina (perineum). The tumor is 2 centimeters (about 1 inch) or smaller.
stage I chronic lymphocytic leukemia  
The blood has too many lymphocytes, and lymph nodes are swollen.
stage I colorectal cancer  
Tumor cells that are found in deeper layers of tissue lining the colon/rectum but have not spread to nearby lymph nodes. Also called Dukes A colorectal cancer.
stage I cutaneous T-cell lymphoma  
May be either of the following: (1) stage IA cancer affecting less than 10% of the skin's surface and appearing as red, dry, scaly patches; (2) stage IB cancer affecting 10% or more of the skin's surface and appearing as red, dry, scaly patches.
stage I endometrial cancer  
Cancer found in only the main part of the uterus, not the cervix.
stage I Hodgkin's disease  
Cancer found in only one lymph node area or one area or organ outside the lymph nodes.
stage I hypopharynx cancer  
Tumor that is confined to one area of the hypopharynx and is no larger than 2 centimeters (about 0.75 inch).
stage I kidney cancer  
A tumor that is 7 centimeters (2.75 inches) or smaller.
stage I laryngeal cancer  
Cancer that is only in the area where it started and has not spread to nearby lymph nodes or other parts of the body. The exact definition of stage I depends on whether the cancer started in the supraglottis (cancer in only one area of the supraglottis, and the vocal cords can move normally); the glottis (cancer in only the vocal cords, and the vocal cords can move normally); or the subglottis (cancer that has not spread outside the subglottis).
stage I lip and oral cavity cancer  
Cancer that is no larger than 2 centimeters (about 1 inch) and has not spread to nearby lymph nodes.
stage I melanoma  
Cancer found in the outer layer of the skin (epidermis), the upper part of the inner layer of skin (dermis), or both but not in nearby lymph nodes. The tumor is no thicker than 1.5 millimeters (about 1/16 of an inch).
stage I mesothelioma  
Cancer found in the lining of the chest cavity near the lung and heart, in the diaphragm (the thin muscle below the lungs and heart that separates the chest from the abdomen), or in the lung.
stage I multiple myeloma  
Relatively few cancer cells have spread throughout the body. There may be no symptoms of disease.
stage I nasopharynx cancer  
Cancer confined to the nasopharynx.
stage I non-Hodgkin's lymphoma  
Cancer found in only one lymph node area or one area or organ outside the lymph nodes.
stage I non-small cell lung cancer  
Cancer in the lung only and not in tissue around the lung.
stage I oropharynx cancer  
Cancer that is no larger than 2 centimeters (about 0.75 inch) and is confined to the oropharynx.
stage I ovarian cancer  
Cancer that is found in one or both of the ovaries and has not spread.
stage I pancreatic cancer  
Cancer that is found only in the pancreas itself or has started to spread to the tissues next to the pancreas (such as the small intestine, the stomach, or the bile duct).
stage I prostate cancer  
Cancer that is only in the prostate gland, cannot be felt during a digital rectal examination, is not visible by imaging, and causes no symptoms. It is usually found accidentally or because a blood test showed an elevated prostate-specific antigen (PSA) level. Cancer cells may be found in only one area of the prostate, or they may be found in many areas of the prostate. Similar to stage A in the Whitmore-Jewett staging system.
stage I stomach cancer  
Cancer that is in the second or third layers of the stomach wall and has not spread to lymph nodes near the cancer, or is in the second layer of the stomach wall and has spread to lymph nodes very close to the tumor.
stage I testicular cancer  
Cancer that is found in the testicle only or has spread into the scrotum.
stage I Wilms' tumor  
Cancer that is found in the kidney only and can be completely removed by surgery.
stage IA soft tissue sarcoma  
Cancer in which the cells look very much like normal cells. The cancer is smaller than 5 centimeters (about 2 inches) and has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.
stage IB soft tissue sarcoma  
Cancer in which the cells look somewhat different from normal cells. The cancer is larger than 5 centimeters (about 2 inches) and has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.
stage II adrenocortical cancer  
Cancer that is larger than 5 centimeters (about 2 inches) and has not spread into tissues around the adrenal gland.
stage II anal cancer  
Cancer has spread beyond the top layer of anal tissue and is larger than 2 centimeters (about 1 inch), but it has not spread to nearby organs or lymph nodes.
stage II bladder cancer  
Cancer cells have spread to the muscular wall of the bladder.
stage II breast cancer  
Stage II breast cancer means one of the following: cancer is no larger than 2 centimeters but has spread to the lymph nodes in the armpit (the axillary lymph nodes); cancer is between 2 and 5 centimeters (from 1 to 2 inches) and may have spread to the lymph nodes in the armpit; cancer is larger than 5 centimeters (larger than 2 inches) but has not spread to the lymph nodes in the armpit.
stage II cancer of the cervix  
Cancer has spread to nearby areas but is still inside the pelvis. In stage IIA cancer of the cervix, cancer has spread beyond the cervix to the upper two thirds of the vagina; in stage IIB, cancer has spread to the tissue around the cervix.
stage II cancer of the esophagus  
Cancer may be found in all layers of esophageal tissue, and may have spread to regional lymph nodes, but has not spread to other tissues.
stage II cancer of the uterus  
Cancer cells have spread to the cervix.
stage II cancer of the vulva  
Cancer is found in the vulva, the space between the opening of the rectum and the vagina (perineum), or both, and the tumor is larger than 2 centimeters (larger than 1 inch).
stage II chronic lymphocytic leukemia  
There are too many lymphocytes in the blood, and the liver or spleen is swollen.
stage II colorectal cancer  
Tumor cells have spread beyond the colon/rectum but not to the lymph nodes. Also called Dukes B colorectal cancer.
stage II cutaneous T-cell lymphoma  
Stage II cutaneous T-cell lymphoma may be either of the following: (1) stage IIA cancer, in which the skin has red, dry, scaly patches, but no tumors, and lymph nodes are enlarged but do not contain cancer cells; (2) stage IIB cancer, in which tumors are on the skin, and lymph nodes are enlarged, but do not contain cancer cells.
stage II endometrial cancer  
Cancer cells have spread to the cervix.
stage II Hodgkin's disease  
Cancer is found in two or more lymph node areas on the same side of the diaphragm (the thin muscle under the lungs that helps one breathe), or cancer is found in only one area or organ outside of the lymphatic system and in the lymph nodes around it. Other lymph node areas on the same side of the diaphragm may also have cancer.
stage II hypopharynx cancer  
The tumor involves more than one area of the hypopharynx or is between 2 and 4 centimeters (between 0.75 and 1.5 inches) in size.
stage II kidney cancer  
A kidney tumor larger than 6 centimeters (2.75 inches).
stage II laryngeal cancer  
The cancer is only in the larynx and has not spread to lymph nodes in the area or to other parts of the body. The exact definition of stage II depends on whether the cancer started in the supraglottis (cancer is in more than one area of the supraglottis, but the vocal cords can move normally), the glottis (cancer has spread to the supraglottis, the subglottis, or both, the vocal cords may not be able to move normally), or the subglottis (cancer has spread to the vocal cords, which may not be able to move normally).
stage II lip and oral cavity cancer  
The cancer is larger than 2 centimeters (about 1 inch) but smaller than 4 centimeters (smaller than 2 inches) and has not spread to lymph nodes in the area.
stage II melanoma  
The tumor is 1.5 to 4 millimeters (less than 1/4 inch) thick. It has spread to the lower part of the inner layer of skin (dermis) but not into the tissue below the skin or into nearby lymph nodes.
stage II mesothelioma  
The cancer has spread beyond the lining of the chest to lymph nodes in the chest.
stage II multiple myeloma  
A moderate number of cancer cells have spread throughout the body.
stage II nasopharynx cancer  
Stage II nasopharynx cancer may be either of the following: (1) stage IIA cancer, in which cancer extends from the nasopharynx to the oropharynx, nasal fossa, or both; (2) stage IIB cancer, in which cancer of the nasopharynx has spread to nearby lymph nodes or extends to the parapharyngeal area.
stage II non-Hodgkin's lymphoma  
Cancer is found in two or more lymph node areas on the same side of the diaphragm (the muscle under the lungs that helps breathing). Cancer is found in only one area or organ outside the lymph nodes and in the lymph nodes around it. Other lymph node areas on the same side of the diaphragm may also have cancer.
stage II non-small cell lung cancer  
Cancer has spread to nearby lymph nodes.
stage II oropharynx cancer  
The tumor is between 2 and 4 centimeters (between 0.75 and 1.5 inches) in size and is confined to the oropharynx.
stage II ovarian cancer  
Cancer is found in one or both ovaries and/or has spread to one of more of the following: the uterus, the fallopian tubes, other body parts within the pelvis.
stage II pancreatic cancer  
Cancer has spread to nearby organs such as the stomach, spleen, or colon but has not entered the lymph nodes.
stage II prostate cancer  
Cancer that may be found by a needle biopsy performed because a blood test showed elevated prostate-specific antigen (PSA); or cancer that may be felt in the prostate during a rectal examination, even though the cancer cells are found only in the prostate gland. Similar to stage B in the Whitmore-Jewett staging system.
stage II stomach cancer  
Stage II stomach cancer is defined by any of the following: (1) cancer is in the second layer of the stomach wall and has spread to lymph nodes further away from the tumor; (2) cancer is only in the muscle layer (the third layer) of the stomach and has spread to lymph nodes very close to the tumor; (3) cancer is in all four layers of the stomach wall but has not spread to lymph nodes or other organs.
stage II testicular cancer  
Cancer has spread to the lymph nodes in the abdomen.
stage II Wilms' tumor  
Cancer has spread to tissue near the kidney, to blood vessels, or to the renal sinus (a part of the kidney through which blood and fluid enter and exit). The cancer can be completely removed by surgery.
stage IIA soft tissue sarcoma  
The cancer cells look somewhat different from normal cells. The cancer is larger than 5 centimeters (about 2 inches) and has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.
stage IIB soft tissue sarcoma  
The cancer cells look very different from normal cells. The cancer is smaller than 5 centimeters (about 2 inches) and has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.
stage IIC soft tissue sarcoma  
The cancer cells look very different from normal cells. The cancer is larger than 5 centimeters (about 2 inches) and has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.
stage III adrenocortical cancer  
The cancer has spread into tissues around the adrenal gland or has spread to the lymph nodes around the adrenal gland.
stage III anal cancer  
Stage III anal cancer is divided into stage IIIA and IIIB. Stage IIIA anal cancer has spread to the lymph nodes around the rectum or to nearby organs such as the vagina or bladder. Stager IIIB cancer has spread to the lymph nodes in the middle of the abdomen or in the groin, or the cancer has spread to both nearby organs and the lymph nodes around the rectum.
stage III bladder cancer  
Cancer cells have spread throughout the muscular wall of the bladder, to the layer of tissue surrounding the bladder, and/or to the nearby reproductive organs.
stage III breast cancer  
Stage III is divided into stages IIIA and IIIB. In stage IIIA breast cancer, the cancer (1) is smaller than 5 centimeters (2 inches) and has spread to the lymph nodes in the armpit, which have grown into each other or into other structures and are attached to them; or (2) is larger than 5 centimeters and has spread to the lymph nodes in the armpit. In stage IIIB breast cancer, the cancer (1) has spread to tissues near the breast (skin, chest wall, including the ribs and the muscles in the chest); or (2) has spread to lymph nodes inside the chest wall along the breast bone.
stage III cancer of the cervix  
Cancer has spread throughout the pelvic area, and cancer cells may have spread to the lower part of the vagina. The cells also may have spread to block the tubes that connect the kidneys to the bladder (the ureters).
stage III cancer of the esophagus  
Cancer has spread to tissues or lymph nodes near the esophagus but has not spread to other parts of the body.
stage III cancer of the uterus  
Cancer cells have spread outside the uterus to the vagina and/or lymph nodes in the pelvis but have not spread outside the pelvis.
stage III cancer of the vulva  
Cancer is found in the vulva, perineum, or both. The cancer has also spread to nearby tissues such as the lower part of the urethra (the tube through which urine passes), the vagina, and the anus (the opening of the rectum); to nearby lymph nodes; or both.
stage III chronic lymphocytic leukemia  
There are too many lymphocytes in the blood, and there are too few red blood cells (anemia). Lymph nodes, liver, or spleen may be swollen.
stage III colorectal cancer  
Tumor cells have spread to organs and lymph nodes near the colon/rectum. Also called Dukes C colorectal cancer.
stage III cutaneous T-cell lymphoma  
Nearly all of the skin is red, dry, and scaly; lymph nodes are either normal or enlarged but do not contain cancer cells.
stage III endometrial cancer  
Cancer cells have spread outside the uterus to the vagina and/or lymph nodes in the pelvis but have not spread outside the pelvis.
stage III Hodgkin's disease  
Cancer is found in lymph node areas on both sides of the diaphragm (the thin muscle under the lungs that helps one breathe). The cancer may have also spread to an area or organ near the lymph node areas and/or to the spleen.
stage III hypopharynx cancer  
The tumor is larger than 4 centimeters (about 1.5 inches) in size, has spread to a single lymph node on the same side of the neck, or both.
stage III kidney cancer  
Kidney cancer that has spread to the major veins of the kidney and may have spread to a single lymph node.
stage III laryngeal cancer  
The cancer has not spread outside of the larynx, but the vocal cords cannot move normally, or the cancer has spread to tissues next to the larynx; or the cancer has spread to one lymph node on the same side of the neck as the original tumor, and the lymph node measures no larger than 3 centimeters (just over 1 inch).
stage III lip and oral cavity cancer  
The cancer is larger than 4 centimeters (about 2 inches); or the cancer is any size but has spread to only one lymph node on the same side of the neck as the cancer. The lymph node that contains cancer is no larger than 3 centimeters (just over one inch).
stage III melanoma  
Stage III melanoma is defined by any of the following: 1) the tumor is more than 4 millimeters (1/4 inch) thick; 2) the tumor has spread to the body tissue below the skin; 3) there are additional tumor growths within 2 centimeters (3/4 inch) of the original tumor (satellite tumors); or 4) the tumor has spread to nearby lymph nodes or there are additional tumor growths (satellite tumors) between the original tumor and the lymph nodes in the area.
stage III mesothelioma  
Cancer has spread into the lung, chest wall, diaphragm (the muscle between the chest and the abdomen), the sac surrounding the heart, or the ribs. It may also have spread to other organs or tissues in the chest.
stage III multiple myeloma  
A relatively large number of cancer cells have spread throughout the body. There may be one or more of the following: 1) a decrease in the number of red blood cells, causing anemia; 2) the amount of calcium in the blood is very high, because the bones are being damaged; 3) more than three bone tumors (plasmacytomas) are found; or 4) high levels of M protein are found in the blood or urine.
stage III nasopharynx cancer  
Cancer that has spread to lymph nodes on both sides of the neck or has spread to nearby bones or sinuses.
stage III non-Hodgkin's lymphoma  
Cancer is found in lymph node areas on both sides of the diaphragm. The cancer may also have spread to an area or organ near the lymph node areas, to the spleen, or both.
stage III non-small cell lung cancer  
Cancer has spread to structures near the lung; to the lymph nodes in the area that separates the two lungs(mediastinum); or to the lymph nodes on the other side of the chest or in the lower neck. Stage III is further divided into stage IIIA (usually can be resected which is sometimes treated with surgery) and stage IIIB (usually cannot be resected which is rarely treated with surgery).
stage III oropharynx cancer  
The tumor is larger than 4 centimeters (about 1.5 inches) in size and may involve a single lymph node on the same side of the neck.
stage III ovarian cancer  
Cancer is found in one or both ovaries and has spread to lymph nodes or to other body parts inside the abdomen (such as the surface of the liver or intestine).
stage III pancreatic cancer  
Cancer of the pancreas in which the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes near the pancreas. Cancer may have spread to nearby organs.
stage III prostate cancer  
Cancer cells have spread outside the covering (capsule) of the prostate to tissues around the prostate but not to the lymph nodes. The glands that produce semen (the seminal vesicles) may have cancer cells in them. Similar to stage C in the Whitmore-Jewett staging system.
stage III soft tissue sarcoma  
The cancer cells look very different from normal cells. The cancer is larger than 5 centimeters (about 2 inches) but has not spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.
stage III stomach cancer  
Stage III stomach cancer is defined by any of the following: 1) cancer is in the third layer of the stomach wall and has spread to lymph nodes further away from the tumor; 2) cancer is in all four layers of the stomach wall and has spread to lymph nodes either very close to the tumor or further away from the tumor; or 3) cancer is in all four layers of the stomach wall and has spread to nearby tissues. The cancer may or may not have spread to lymph nodes very close to the tumor.
stage III testicular cancer  
Cancer has spread beyond the lymph nodes in the abdomen. There may be cancer in parts of the body far away from the testicles.
stage III Wilms' tumor  
Cancer has spread to tissues near the kidney and cannot be completely removed by surgery. The cancer may have spread to blood vessels or organs near the kidney or throughout the abdomen. The cancer may also have spread to lymph nodes near the kidney.
stage IIIA anal cancer  
Cancer has spread to the lymph nodes around the rectum or to nearby organs such as the vagina or bladder.
stage IIIA breast cancer  
Stage IIIA breast cancer is defined by either of the following: (1) the cancer is smaller than 5 centimeters (2 inches) and has spread to the lymph nodes under the arm, which have grown into each other or into other structures and are attached to them; (2) the cancer is larger than 5 centimeters and has spread to the lymph nodes under the arm.
stage IIIB anal cancer  
Cancer has spread to the lymph nodes in the middle of the abdomen or in the groin, or the cancer has spread to both nearby organs and the lymph nodes around the rectum.
stage IIIB breast cancer  
Stage IIIB breast cancer is defined by either of the following: (1) the cancer has spread to tissues near the breast (skin, chest wall, including the ribs and the muscles in the chest); (2) the cancer has spread to lymph nodes inside the chest wall along the breast bone.
stage IV adrenocortical cancer  
The cancer has spread to tissues or organs in the area and to lymph nodes around the adrenal cortex, or the cancer has spread to other parts of the body.
stage IV anal cancer  
Cancer has spread to distant lymph nodes within the abdomen or to organs in other parts of the body.
stage IV bladder cancer  
Cancer cells have spread to the wall of the abdomen or pelvis or to nearby lymph nodes, or it has spread to lymph nodes and other parts of the body far from the bladder.
stage IV breast cancer  
Cancer has spread to other organs of the body, most often the bones, lungs, liver, or brain; or tumor has spread locally to the skin and lymph nodes inside the neck, near the collarbone.
stage IV cancer of the cervix  
Cancer has spread to other parts of the body. In stage IVA cancer of the cervix, cancer has spread to the bladder or rectum (organs close to the cervix); in stage IVB cancer of the cervix, cancer has spread to distant organs such as the lungs.
stage IV cancer of the esophagus  
Cancer has spread to lymph nodes and other parts of the body far from the esophagus.
stage IV cancer of the uterus  
Cancer cells have spread to the lining of the bladder or rectum or to distant parts of the body.
stage IV cancer of the vulva  
Cancer has spread beyond the urethra, vagina, and anus into the lining of the bladder (the sac that holds urine) and the bowel (intestine); or it may have spread to the lymph nodes in the pelvis or to other parts of the body.
stage IV chronic lymphocytic leukemia  
There are too many lymphocytes in the blood and too few platelets. This makes it hard for the blood to clot. Lymph nodes, liver, or spleen may be swollen and there may be too few red blood cells present (anemia).
stage IV colorectal cancer  
Cancer cells have spread to organs and lymph nodes in other parts of the body.
stage IV cutaneous T-cell lymphoma  
Stage IV cutaneous T-cell lymphoma may be either of the following: in stage IVA cancer, the skin is red, dry, and scaly, and the lymph nodes contain cancer cells; in stage IVB cancer, the skin is red, dry and scaly, cancer cells may be found in lymph nodes, and cancer has spread to other organs in the body.
stage IV endometrial cancer  
Cancer cells have spread to the lining of the bladder or rectum or to distant parts of the body.
stage IV Hodgkin's disease  
Cancer has spread to an organ or organs outside the lymph system; or cancer has spread to only one organ outside the lymph system, but lymph nodes far away from that organ are involved. Cancer cells may be found in the lymph nodes near these organs.
stage IV hypopharynx cancer  
The tumor has spread to nearby tissues and lymph nodes of the neck and may have spread to other parts of the body.
stage IV kidney cancer  
Kidney cancer that has spread beyond the kidney to lymph nodes or organs.
stage IV laryngeal cancer  
The cancer has spread to tissues around the larynx, such as the pharynx or the tissues in the neck. The lymph nodes in the area may contain cancer; the cancer has spread to more than one lymph node on the same side of the neck as the cancer, to lymph nodes on one or both sides of the neck, or to any lymph node that measures more than 6 centimeters (over 2 inches); or the cancer has spread to other parts of the body.
stage IV lip and oral cavity cancer  
The cancer has spread to tissues around the lip and oral cavity (the lymph nodes in the area may contain cancer); the cancer is any size and has spread to more than one lymph node on the same side of the neck as the cancer, to lymph nodes on one or both sides of the neck, or to any lymph node that is larger than 6 centimeters (larger than 2 inches); or the cancer has spread to other parts of the body.
stage IV melanoma  
The tumor has spread to other organs or to lymph nodes far from the original tumor.
stage IV mesothelioma  
Cancer has spread to distant organs or tissues.
stage IV nasopharynx cancer  
Stage IV nasopharynx cancer may be one of the following. 1) Stage IVA: Cancer has spread beyond the nasopharynx to other areas in the head and may have spread to nearby lymph nodes. 2) Stage IVB: Cancer has spread beyond the nasopharynx to other areas in the head and to lymph nodes above the collarbone or that are larger than 6 cm. (larger than 2 inches). 3) Stage IVC: Cancer that has spread to other organs of the body.
stage IV non-Hodgkin's lymphoma  
Cancer has spread to more than one organ or organs outside the lymph system. Cancer cells may be found in the lymph nodes near these organs. Cancer has spread to only one organ outside the lymph system, but lymph nodes far away from that organ are involved.
stage IV non-small cell lung cancer  
Cancer has spread to other parts of the body.
stage IV oropharynx cancer  
The tumor has spread to the hard palate, tongue, or larynx, to nearby lymph nodes, and may have spread to other parts of the body.
stage IV ovarian cancer  
Cancer is found in one or both ovaries and has spread outside the abdomen or has spread to the inside of the liver.
stage IV pancreatic cancer  
Cancer of the pancreas in which the cancer has spread to organs near the pancreas (stage IVA) or to organs far away from the pancreas (stage IVB).
stage IV prostate cancer  
Cancer cells have spread to lymph nodes (near or far from the prostate) or to organs and tissues far away from the prostate such as the bone, liver, or lungs. Similar to stage D in the Whitmore-Jewett staging system.
stage IV soft tissue sarcoma  
The cancer has spread to lymph nodes in the area or other parts of the body (such as the lungs, head, or neck).
stage IV stomach cancer  
Cancer has spread to nearby tissues and to lymph nodes further away from the tumor or has spread to other parts of the body.
stage IV Wilms' tumor  
Cancer has spread to organs further away from the kidney (such as the lungs, liver, bone, and brain).
stage IVA pancreatic cancer  
Cancer has spread to organs that are near the pancreas (such as the stomach, spleen, or colon) but has not spread to distant organs (such as the liver or lungs).
stage IVB pancreatic cancer  
Cancer of the pancreas in which the cancer has spread to distant organs (such as the liver or lungs).
stage V Wilms' tumor  
Cancer cells are found in both kidneys.
staging  
Performing exams and tests to learn the extent of the cancer within the body, especially whether the disease has spread from the original site to other parts of the body. It is important to know the stage of the disease in order to plan the best treatment.
standard therapy  
A currently accepted and widely used treatment for a certain type of cancer, based on the results of past research.
statistically significant  
Describes a mathematical measure of difference between groups. The difference is said to be statistically significant if it is greater than what might be expected to happen by chance alone.
staurosporine  
A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkaloids. It is being studied in the treatment of cancer.
stavudine  
A drug that belongs to the family of drugs called nucleoside analogues. It is used to treat infection caused by viruses.
stellate  
Star shaped.
stem cell factor  
A drug that is being studied for its ability to increase the number of stem cells in the blood.
stem cell transplantation  
A method of replacing immature blood-forming cells that were destroyed by cancer treatment. The stem cells are given to the person after treatment to help the bone marrow recover and continue producing healthy blood cells.
stem cells  
The cells that all blood cells come from.
stent  
A device placed in a body structure (such as a blood vessel or the gastrointestinal tract) to provide support and keep the structure open.
stereotactic biopsy  (STAIR-ee-o-TAK-tik BY-op-see)
A biopsy procedure that uses a computer and a three-dimensional scanning device to find a tumor site and guide the removal of tissue for examination under a microscope.
stereotactic external beam radiation  
A radiation therapy technique that delivers radiation directly to the tumor while sparing the healthy tissue. Also called radiosurgery and radiation surgery.
stereotactic radiation therapy  
A radiation therapy technique involving a rigid head frame that is attached to the skull; high-dose radiation is administered through openings in the head frame to the tumor while decreasing the amount of radiation given to normal brain tissue. This procedure does not involve surgery. Also called stereotaxic radiosurgery and stereotactic radiosurgery.
stereotactic radiosurgery  
A radiation therapy technique involving a rigid head frame that is attached to the skull; high-dose radiation is administered through openings in the head frame to the tumor while decreasing the amount of radiation given to normal brain tissue. This procedure does not involve surgery. Also called stereotaxic radiosurgery and stereotactic radiation therapy.
stereotaxic radiosurgery  
A radiation therapy technique involving a rigid head frame that is attached to the skull; high-dose radiation is administered through openings in the head frame to the tumor while decreasing the amount of radiation given to normal brain tissue. This procedure does not involve surgery. Also called stereotactic radiosurgery and stereotactic radiation therapy.
stereotaxis  (stair-ee-o-TAK-sis)
Use of a computer and scanning devices to create three-dimensional pictures. This method can be used to direct a biopsy, external radiation, or the insertion of radiation implants.
sterile  
Unable to produce children.
steroid therapy  
Treatment with corticosteroid drugs to reduce swelling, pain, and other symptoms of inflammation.
steroids  (STEH-roidz)
Drugs used to relieve swelling and inflammation.
sterotactic radiation therapy  
A radiation therapy technique involving a rigid head frame that is attached to the skull; high-dose radiation is administered through openings in the head frame to the tumor while decreasing the amount of radiation given to normal brain tissue. This procedure does not involve surgery. Also called stereotaxic radiosurgery and stereotactic radiosurgery.
STI571  
A drug that is being studied for its ability to inhibit the growth of certain cancers. It interferes with a portion of the protein produced by the bcr/abl oncogene. Also called imatinib mesylate.
stoma  
A surgically created opening from an area inside the body to the outside.
stomach  
An organ that is part of the digestive system. It helps in the digestion of food by mixing it with digestive juices and churning it into a thin liquid.
stomatitis  
Sores on the lining of the mouth.
stool  
The waste matter discharged in a bowel movement; feces.
stool test  
A test to check for hidden blood in the bowel movement.
streptavidin  
A small bacterial protein that binds with high affinity to the vitamin biotin. This streptavidin-biotin combination can be used to link molecules such as radioisotopes and monoclonal antibodies together. These bound products have the property of being attracted to, and attaching to, cancer cells, rather than normal cells. The radiolabeled products are more easily removed from the body, thus decreasing their toxicity.
streptozocin  
An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called alkylating agents.
Stromagen  
A drug that is derived from a patient's stem cells (specialized cells in the bone marrow that form new blood cells) and may be given back to the patient to help restore bone marrow that has been damaged by high-dose chemotherapy.
stromal tumors  (STRO-mal)
Tumors that arise in the supporting connective tissue of an organ.
strontium  
A metal often used in a radioactive form for imaging tests or as a treatment for cancer.
strontium-89  
A radioactive compound that is absorbed by the bone. It is used to treat bone pain associated with prostate cancer.
study agent  
A medicine, vitamin, mineral, food supplement, or a combination of them that is being tested in a clinical trial.
SU101  
An anticancer drug that works by inhibiting a cancer cell growth factor. Also called leflunomide.
SU5416  
An anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors.
subcutaneous  
Beneath the skin.
subcutaneous port  
A tube surgically placed into a blood vessel and attached to a disk placed under the skin. It is used for the administration of intravenous fluids and drugs; it can also be used to obtain blood samples.
subependymal  (SUB-ep-EN-di-mal)
Below the ependyma (the membrane that lines the ventricles of the brain and the central canal of the spinal cord).
suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid  
A substance that is being studied as an anticancer drug.
subglottis  (SUB-glot-is)
The lowest part of the larynx; the area from just below the vocal cords down to the top of the trachea.
sucralfate  
A drug used to treat ulcers. It adheres to proteins at the ulcer site and forms a protective coating over the ulcer. Sucralfate is also used to treat mucositis.
sulfuric acid  
A strong acid that, when concentrated is extemely corrosive to the skin and mucous membranes. It is used in making fertilizers, dyes, electroplating, and industrial explosives.
sulindac  
A nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that is being studied as a treatment for cancer.
sun protection factor  
SPF. A scale for rating the level of sunburn protection in sunscreen products. The higher the SPF, the more sunburn protection it provides. Sunscreens with an SPF value of 2 through 11 provide minimal protection against sunburns. Sunscreens with an SPF of 12 through 29 provide moderate protection, which is adequate for most people. Those with an SPF of 30 or higher provide high protection against sunburn and are sometimes recommended for people who are highly sensitive to the sun.
sunscreen  
A substance that helps protect the skin from the sun's harmful rays. Sunscreens reflect, absorb, and scatter both ultraviolet A and B radiation. Using lotions, creams, or gels that contain sunscreens can help protect the skin from premature aging and damage that may lead to skin cancer.
superficial  
Affecting cells on the surface. Not invasive.
superior vena cava  
The large vein that carries blood from the head, neck, arms, and chest to the heart.
supplementation  
Adding nutrients to the diet.
support group  
A group of people with similar disease who meet to discuss how better to cope with their disease and treatment.
supportive care  
Treatment given to prevent, control, or relieve complications and side effects and to improve the comfort and quality of life of people who have cancer.
supraclavicular lymph nodes  
Lymph nodes located above the clavicle (collarbone).
supraglottis  (SOOP-ra-GLOT-is)
The upper part of the larynx (voice box), including the epiglottis; the area above the vocal cords.
supratentorial  
Located in the upper part of the brain.
suramin  
A drug used to treat bacterial and parasitic infections. It is also being studied in the treatment of cancer.
surgeon  
A doctor who removes or repairs a part of the body by operating on the patient.
surgery  
A procedure to remove or repair a part of the body or to find out whether disease is present. An operation.
surgical castration  
Surgical removal of the testicles (orchiectomy) or ovaries (oophorectomy) to stop the production of sex hormones. Decreasing the levels of hormones may stop the growth of certain cancers.
surgical oncologist  
A doctor who performs biopsies and other surgical procedures in cancer patients.
survival rate  
The percentage of people in a study or treatment group who are alive for a given period of time after diagnosis. This is commonly expressed as 5-year survival.
symptom  
An indication that a person has a condition or disease. Some examples of symptoms are headache, fever, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, and pain.
symptomatic  
Having to do with symptoms, which are signs of a condition or disease.
syncytium  
A large cell-like structure formed by the joining together of two or more cells. The plural is syncytia.
syndrome  (SIN-drome)
A set of symptoms or conditions that occur together and suggest the presence of a certain disease or an increased chance of developing the disease.
synovial membrane  
A layer of connective tissue that lines the cavities of joints, tendon sheaths, and bursae (fluid-filled sacs between tendons and bones). The synovial membrane makes synovial fluid, which has a lubricating function.
synovial sarcoma  
A malignant tumor that develops in the synovial membrane of the joints.
synthetic retinoid  (sin-THET-ik RET-in-oyd)
A substance related to vitamin A that is produced in a laboratory.
systemic  (sis-TEM-ik)
Affecting the entire body.
systemic disease  
Disease that affects the whole body.
systemic lupus erythematosus  
SLE. A chronic inflammatory connective tissue disease marked by skin rashes, joint pain and swelling, inflammation of the kidneys, inflammation of the fibrous tissue surrounding the heart (i.e., the pericardium), as well as other problems. Not all affected individuals display all of these problems. Also called lupus.
systemic therapy  (sis-TEM-ik)
Treatment using substances that travel through the bloodstream, reaching and affecting cells all over the body.

 

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