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Cancer Health Center

Medical Reference Related to Cancer

  1. Genetics of Colorectal Cancer (PDQ®): Genetics - Health Professional Information [NCI] - Colon Cancer Genes

    Major GenesMajor genes are defined as those that are necessary and sufficient for disease causation, with important mutations (e.g., nonsense, missense, frameshift) of the gene as causal mechanisms. Major genes are typically considered those that are involved in single-gene disorders, and the diseases caused by major genes are often relatively rare. Most pathogenic mutations in major genes lead to a very high risk of disease, and environmental contributions are often difficult to recognize.[1] Historically, most major colon cancer susceptibility genes have been identified by linkage analysis using high-risk families; thus, these criteria were fulfilled by definition, as a consequence of the study design. The functions of the major colon cancer genes have been reasonably well characterized over the past decade. Three proposed classes of colon cancer genes are tumor suppressor genes, oncogenes, and DNA repair

  2. Rectal Cancer Treatment (PDQ®): Treatment - Patient Information [NCI] - Treatment Option Overview

    There are different types of treatment for patients with rectal cancer.Different types of treatment are available for patients with rectal cancer. Some treatments are standard (the currently used treatment), and some are being tested in clinical trials. A treatment clinical trial is a research study meant to help improve current treatments or obtain information on new treatments for patients with cancer. When clinical trials show that a new treatment is better than the standard treatment, the new treatment may become the standard treatment. Patients may want to think about taking part in a clinical trial. Some clinical trials are open only to patients who have not started treatment.Four types of standard treatment are used:SurgerySurgery is the most common treatment for all stages of rectal cancer. The cancer is removed using one of the following types of surgery:Polypectomy: If the cancer is found in a polyp (a small piece of bulging tissue), the polyp is often removed during a

  3. Skin Cancer Prevention (PDQ®): Prevention - Patient Information [NCI] - nci_ncicdr0000062802-nci-header

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http://cancer.gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.Skin Cancer Prevention

  4. PC-SPES (PDQ®): Complementary and alternative medicine - Patient Information [NCI] - Overview

    PC-SPES is a mixture of 8 herbs that was sold as a dietary supplement to keep the prostate healthy (see Question 1). Some batches of PC-SPES were found to contain prescription medicines. It was taken off the market and is no longer being made (see Question 1). Herbs in PC-SPES have been used in traditional Chinese medicine for many health problems,including prostate problems,for hundreds of ...

  5. Late Effects of Treatment for Childhood Cancer (PDQ®): Treatment - Health Professional Information [NCI] - Late Effects of the Respiratory System

    Acute and chronic pulmonary complications reported after treatment for pediatric malignancies include radiation pneumonitis, pulmonary fibrosis, and spontaneous pneumothorax. These sequelae are uncommon following contemporary therapy and most often result in subclinical injury that is detected only by imaging or formal pulmonary function testing. Chemotherapy agents with potential pulmonary toxicity commonly used in the treatment of pediatric malignancies include bleomycin, busulfan, and the nitrosoureas (carmustine and lomustine). These agents induce lung damage on their own or potentiate the damaging effects of radiation to the lung. Thus, the potential for acute or chronic pulmonary sequelae must be considered in the context of the specific chemotherapeutic agents and the radiation dose administered, the volume of lung irradiated, and the fractional radiation therapy doses.[1] Acute pneumonitis manifested by fever, congestion, cough, and dyspnea can follow radiation therapy

  6. Gastrointestinal Complications (PDQ®): Supportive care - Patient Information [NCI] - General Information

    The gastrointestinal (GI) tract is part of the digestive system, which processes nutrients (vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, fats, proteins, and water) in foods that are eaten and helps pass waste material out of the body. The GI tract includes the stomach and intestines (bowels). The stomach is a J-shaped organ in the upper abdomen. Food moves from the throat to the stomach through a hollow, muscular tube called the esophagus. After leaving the stomach, partly-digested food passes into the small intestine and then into the large intestine (colon). The last 6 inches of the large intestine are the rectum and the anal canal. The anal canal ends at the anus (the opening of the large intestine to the outside of the body).Anatomy of the lower digestive system, showing the colon and other organs.GI complications are common in cancer patients. Complications are medical problems that occur during a disease, or after a procedure or treatment. They may be caused by the disease, procedure, or

  7. Delirium (PDQ®): Supportive care - Health Professional Information [NCI] - Definition

    Delirium is a neuropsychiatric complication that can occur in patients with cancer, particularly in those with advanced disease. The prevention of delirium in the patient with cancer has not been systematically examined, but studies in hospitalized elderly patients suggest that early identification of risk factors reduces the occurrence rate of delirium and the duration of episodes.[1]Delirium has been defined as a disorder of global cerebral dysfunction characterized by disordered awareness, attention, and cognition.[2] In addition, delirium is associated with behavioral manifestations. The text revision of the fourth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR) cites the core clinical criteria for diagnosis as follows:[3]A disturbance of consciousness with reduced clarity of awareness and attention deficit.Other cognitive or perceptual disturbances.Acuity of onset (hours to days) and fluctuation over the course of the day.The presence of an

  8. Oral Complications of Chemotherapy and Head/Neck Radiation (PDQ®): Supportive care - Health Professional Information [NCI] - Psychosocial Issues

    Oral complications of cancer, including oral mucositis [1] and salivary gland hypofunction/xerostomia,[2] are among the most devastating of both short- and long-term problems encountered by people with cancer because they affect eating and communication, the most basic of human activities. Patients with these problems can become withdrawn, socially avoidant, and even clinically depressed as a result of the difficulties and frustrations they encounter living with oral complications.When psychotropic drug interventions are employed in the treatment of such patients, it is important that the drugs chosen will improve, or at least not worsen, their oral complications. For example, in the treatment of depression, highly anticholinergic drugs should be avoided in patients with xerostomia and salivary problems. (Refer to the PDQ summaries on Adjustment to Cancer: Anxiety and Distress and Depression for more information.) Supportive care, including education and symptom management, are

  9. Recurrent Pancreatic Cancer Treatment

    Treatment Options for Recurrent Pancreatic CancerTreatment options for recurrent pancreatic cancer include the following:Palliative therapy.Chemotherapy: fluorouracil [1] or gemcitabine.[2,3,4]Palliative therapyPalliative therapy for recurrent pancreatic cancer includes the following:Palliative surgical bypass procedures such as endoscopic or radiologically placed stents.[5,6]Palliative radiation procedures.Pain relief by celiac axis nerve or intrapleural block (percutaneous).[7]Other palliative medical care alone.ChemotherapyChemotherapy occasionally produces objective antitumor response, but the low percentage of significant responses and lack of survival advantage warrant use of therapies under evaluation.[8]Treatment Options Under Clinical Evaluation for Recurrent Pancreatic CancerTreatment options under clinical evaluation include the following:Phase I and II clinical trials evaluating pharmacologic modulation of fluorinated pyrimidines, new anticancer agents, or biological

  10. Prostate Cancer Screening (PDQ®): Screening - Health Professional Information [NCI] - Questions or Comments About This Summary

    If you have questions or comments about this summary, please send them to Cancer.gov through the Web site's Contact Form. We can respond only to email messages written in English.

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