Medical Glossary
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T cells White blood cells that mature in the thymus and perform important immune system functions, also known as T lymphocytes.
Targeted Therapy A treatment that is used to attack a very specific part of the cancer cell which makes it different from a normal cell. Targeted therapies are both in pill and IV form.
Terminal A word used to describe a patient that will likely die from the disease in a relatively short period of time.
Testicular Self- Examination (TSE) An examination of the testicles with the hands to see if there are any abnormal areas.
Thoracentesis A procedure where a needle is inserted into the pleural cavity space in the lung and fluid is withdrawn. This can be done for diagnostic purposes or for comfort measures to help a patient breathe better if they have a large amount of fluid in this space.
Thoracic Surgeon A doctor who specializes in surgeries involving the chest, heart and lungs.
Thrombocytopenia A platelet count that is below normal. A normal platelet count is from 150,000 to 450,000. A platelet transfusion will generally be given when the platelet count is less than 10,000 if an inpatient and less than 20,000 if an out-patient or having bleeding.
Thrombophlebitis The inflammation of a vein with a blood clot inside the vein.
TID A Latin abbreviation used on prescriptions to indicate that the medication should be taken three times a day.
Total Body Irradiation (TBI) Used as a treatment to condition the patient for a bone marrow transplant. May be used with chemotherapy and be given over the course of several days and in most cases, twice daily (fractionated radiation) Fractionated schedules may decrease the risk of side effects.
Toxic A serious and unwanted side effect.
Toxicity How toxic the effects of a treatment are to the patient.
TPN (Total Parenteral Nutrition) A solution with high nutritional content given through the central line catheter.
Trachea The windpipe or tube that allows air movement into the lungs
Tracheostomy An opening in trachea of the neck allowing for the passage of air in and out of the lungs.
Triage The process of screening patients to determine the severity of the medical situation and type of care necessary.
Tumor An abnormal growth of cells which can be cancerous (malignant) or not cancerous (benign).
Tumor Marker A blood test for a specific cancer that may indicate the level of cancer activity. An example would be a PSA for prostate cancer and a CEA for colon cancer.
Twenty-four hour urine collection A lab test that requires the patient to collect their urine for 24 hours. This can test for many things to see how well the kidneys are functioning.