There are many new medical terms to learn and understand when you are diagnosed with cancer. The following phrases are used to describe the success or failure rates of various treatments and how your cancer is responding to therapy.
- This means that on an x-ray or other imaging scan, the tumor appears to be completely gone as a result of treatment. (This is not the same as "cure".)
- This usually means that the tumor has shrunk in size by at least 30%.
- This means the tumor did not grow or shrink much.
- This means the tumor is growing in spite of the treatment you received. When this happens, that specific therapy is usually stopped or modified in some way.
- This means the tumor has disappeared after treatment.
- This means a treatment (e.g., a particular type of chemotherapy) is the first therapy received, before any other treatments are used. Second line therapy may follow and so on.
Multimodality or Combined Modality Therapy
- This means the use of a chemotherapy regimen along with surgery, radiation therapy, targeted therapy or a combination.
- This means the treatment that is given to relieve symptoms, provide better quality of life, and perhaps extend life when cure is not probable.