Words to Know

chemosensitizer

A medicine that makes tumor cells more sensitive to the effects of chemotherapy.

chemotherapeutic agent

A medicine used to treat cancer.

chemotherapy

Treatment with medicines, chemical substances, that kill cancer cells.

chest wall

The muscles, bones and joints that make up the area of the body between the neck and the abdomen.

chest X-ray

An X-ray of the structures inside the chest. An X-ray is a type of high-energy radiation that can go through the body and onto film, making pictures of areas inside the chest, which can be used to diagnose disease.

Chinese meridian theory

In traditional Chinese medicine, meridians are channels that form a network in the body, through which qi (vital energy) flows. According to this theory, blocked qi causes pain or illness: The flow of qi is reportedly restored by using pressure, needles, suction or heat at hundreds of specific points along the meridians.

chronic

A disease or condition that persists or progresses over a long period of time.

chronic pain

Pain that can range from mild to severe, and persists or progresses over a long period of time.

cisplatin

A medicine used to treat many types of cancer. Cisplatin contains the metal platinum. It kills cancer cells by damaging their DNA and stopping them from dividing. Cisplatin is a type of alkylating agent.

Claus model

A computer program that uses statistics to predict a person's risk for developing breast cancer based on family history.

clergy

Ordained individuals who perform spiritual and/or religious functions.

clinical breast exam

Also called CBE. A physical exam of the breast performed by a health care provider to check for lumps or other changes.

clinical practice guidelines

Guidelines developed to help healthcare professionals and individuals receiving care to make decisions about screening, prevention or treatment of a specific health condition.

clinical researcher

A health professional who works directly with individuals receiving care, or uses data from those individuals to do research on health and disease and to develop new treatments. Clinical researchers may also do research on how health care practices affect health and disease.

clinical resistance

The failure of a cancer to shrink after treatment.

clinical series

A case series in which the individuals receive treatment in a clinic or other medical facility.

clinical stage

The stage of cancer (amount or spread of cancer in the body) that is based on tests that are done before surgery. These include physical exams, imaging tests, lab tests (such as blood tests) and biopsies.

clinical staging

A method used to find out the stage of cancer (amount or spread of cancer in the body) using tests that are done before surgery. These include physical exams, imaging tests, lab tests (such as blood tests) and biopsies.

clinical study

Also called clinical trial. A type of research study that tests how well new medical approaches work in people. These studies test new methods of screening, prevention, diagnosis or treatment of a disease.

clinical trial

Also called clinical study. A type of research study that tests how well new medical approaches work in people. These studies test new methods of screening, prevention, diagnosis or treatment of a disease.