Breast CancerBreast Cancer A to Z
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Breast Cancer Glossary




A skin irritation or inflammation characterized by either dry or wet sore areas, and often accompanied by burning or itching.

Swelling due to an accumulation of fluid in body tissues, often a result of some hormonal therapies.
Also see in Resources -> Lymphedema.

An accumulation of fluid in the body cavities, with metastatic breast cancer most commonly manifested by apleural effusion, where fluid accumulates in the pleural cavity surrounding the lungs. This can be relieved by thoracentesis where the fluid is drained through a hollow needle, and biopsied for evidence of malignant cells.

See red blood cells.

Epogen, Procrit. A growth factor that promotes the red blood cell count and reduces the need for transfusions.

A type of human of hormone that promotes and regulates female sex characteristics.

Estrogen Dependent
A tumor that grows, or grows more rapidly, in the presence of estrogen. This is considered a positive indicator, since it permits hormonal treatment for control of the tumor, increasing options for treatment.

Estrogen Receptor Positive (or Negative)
This is often written as ER+ or ER- and is a measure of the degree to which a given tumor is dependent upon estrogen for its growth, measured by an Estrogen receptor assay (ERA). The number of hormone receptors on the tumor are measured to determine this. See also progesterone receptors.

Estrogen Receptor Test
Test on breast tissue to determine if a tumor is Estrogen Receptor Positive (or Negative).

The leakage of a drug administered intravenously into the tissue outside the vein.





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