OCN (Oncology certified nurse)

A registered nurse who has met the requirements and successfully completed a certification examination in oncology.


A doctor who specializes in treating cancer.


The study of cancer.

Oncology clinical nurse specialist

A registered nurse with a master's degree who specializes in the education and treatment of cancer patients.

Orchiectomy (Castration)

The surgical removal of the testicles.


Palliative treatment

Treatment aimed at the relief of pain and symptoms of disease but not intended to cure the disease.


Decreased white cells, red cells, and platelet.

Pap (Papanicolaou) smear

A test to detect cancer or cancerous change of the cervix.


Removing fluid from the abdomen using local anesthesia and needle and syringe.

Pathological fracture

A break in a bone usually caused by disease rather than force.


A doctor who specializes in pathology.


The study of disease by the examination of tissues and body fluids under the microscope.


A database available to physicians supported by NCI on the latest information on standard treatments and ongoing clinical trials for each type and stage of cancer.

Pelvic node dissection

Removal of possible cancer carrying lymph nodes in the pelvis.


Tiny areas of bleeding under the skin, usually caused by a low platelet count.


A painful inflammation of the veins.


Extreme sensitivity to the sun, leaving the patient prone to sunburns.


A substance that has no real therapeutic pharmacological value. They are often given to patients who require a pill for psychological reasons, but mostly as part of clinical trials to test the effectiveness of new drugs.


Cells in the blood that are responsible for clotting and stop bleeding.

Platelet count

The number of platelets in a blood sample.


A growth of tissue protruding into a body cavity, such as a nasal or rectal polyp.

Port - Implanted

A catheter connected to a quarter-sized disc that is surgically placed just below the skin in the chest or abdomen. The tube is inserted into a large vein or artery directly into the bloodstream. Fluids, drugs, or blood products can be infused, and blood can be drawn through a needle that is stuck into the disc. Examples: Port-o-cath, Infusaport, Lifeport.

Port - Peritoneal

A catheter connected to a quarter-sized disc that is surgically placed in the abdomen. The catheter is inserted to deliver drug to the abdominal cavity.

Primary tumor

The original tumor site.


One of the female hormones produced by the ovaries.

Progesterone-receptor assay

A test that determines if breast cancer cells are stimulated by the progesterone. A similar test is the Estrogen-receptor assay.


The projected outcome of a disease; the life expectancy.


Artificial replacement of a missing body part.


A treatment plan, either standard or investigational.

PSA (Prostate-specific antigen)

A marker used to determine prostate disease. Usually, the level is <4.0 ng/ml for normal person.

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Friday, May 18
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