Medical Glossary
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Sarcoma A cancer that originates in the muscle, fat, bone or cartilage. Example of sarcoma are Osteosarcoma, which is cancer of the bone and Chondrosarcoma, which is cancer of the cartilage.
Screening Activities to detect cancer in healthy people.
Sentinal Lymph Node A procedure for breast cancer patients where a blue dye and/or a radioactive dye is injected in the breast tissue close to the cancer. The first group of lymph nodes to take up the dye is called “the sentinel lymph node(s)”. The surgeon removes the sentinel lymph node and it is sent for the pathologist to determine if there is cancer present in the lymph node. If there is not any cancer in the sentinel lymph node, then it is less likely that the lymph nodes under the armpit would be involved with cancer and decreasing the need for an axillary dissection.
Sepsis A bacterial infection in the blood which commonly causes fever and shaking chills and requires antibiotics.
Shingles Is caused by the varicella virus (chicken pox virus) It is also known as herpes zoster. It presents as a patterned outbreak of painful blisters. Occurs often in patients whose immune system is compromised such as the elderly or in cancer patients.
Side Effects Undesired outcomes from a treatment that can include fatigue, nausea, hair loss, drop in blood counts or neuropathy.
Sigmoidoscopy a visual examination of the rectum and lower colon with a flexible lighted scope.
Simulation See Radiation Therapy Simulation
Small Cell Lung Cancer A type of lung cancer made up of small, round cells. Small cell lung cancer is less common than non-small cell lung cancer and often grows more quickly. The name is often shortened to SCLC.
Social Work Services Are services providing assistance and counseling to patients and their families by social workers in dealing with social emotional, and environmental problems associated with illness or disabilities, often in the context of discharge planning coordinator.
Social Worker A professional trained to talk with people and their families about emotional or physical needs, and to find them support services.
Speech Language Pathology The evaluation and rehabilitation of speech, language, and voice disorders.
Sputum A mucous that is coughed up from the lungs. It is commonly clear or whitish in color.
Squamous Cell Carcinoma A cancer that arises from the skin or the surfaces of other organs such as the mouth, lung, or cervix.
Stable Disease Cancer that has not grown nor has it decreased; it has stayed the same.
Stage A determination of where the cancer is and where it is not.
Staging A process to find out where the cancer is and where it isn't. Staging is different for each tumor type. Staging may include blood work, a variety of scans and/or a bone marrow biopsy.
Stem cells They produce the red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets. They can be collected directly from the bone marrow by a bone marrow harvest or from the blood by apheresis.
Steroids Given as a treatment for many types of cancer both as a pill and through the IV.
Stoma A opening in the skin of the body for a purpose. Examples of common stomas are a colostomy or ileostomy to allow for the passage of stool from the intestine to outside the abdomen or a ureterostomy, which is opening in the skin from the ureter to outside the abdomen to allow the passage of urine or a tracheostomy which is an opening in the neck to allow the passage of air into and out of the lungs.
Stomatitis Soreness or inflammation of the lining of the mouth. This can be caused by virus, chemotherapy and/or radiation treatments.
Stool Another name for feces or bowel movement.
Survival Rate A percent of how likely it will be that a cancer patient is alive in five years with a specific cancer at a specific stage based on statistical data.
Syngeneic The transfer of stem cells from one identical twin to another.
Systemic Affecting the whole body and not just a particular organ.