Stages of Cancer

What is the doctor looking for when staging cancer?

Staging cancers: TNM and I-IV systems

Cancer grading and staging

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If left untreated, cancers often go through three stages: Cancer cells multiply quickly. A cancerous malignant tumour is a lump or growth of tissue made up from cancer cells. Cancerous tumours normally first develop in one site - the primary tumour. However, to get larger, a tumour has to develop a blood supply to obtain oxygen and nourishment for the new and dividing cells.

In fact, cancer grading and staging, a tumour would not grow bigger than the azithromycin and mepron of a pinhead if it did not also develop a blood supply.

Cancer cells make chemicals that stimulate tiny blood vessels to grow around them which branch off from the existing blood vessels. This ability for cancer cells to stimulate blood vessels to grow is called angiogenesis. Cancer cells also have the ability to push through or between normal cells. So, as they divide and multiply, cancer cells invade and damage the local surrounding tissue.

Some cancer cells may get into local lymph channels. The lymph channels drain lymph into lymph nodes. There are many lymph nodes all over the body. A cancer cell may be carried to a lymph node and there it may become trapped. However, it may multiply and develop into a tumour. This is why lymph nodes that are near to cancer grading and staging tumour may enlarge and contain cancer cells. Some cancer cells may get into a local small blood vessel capillary.

They may then get carried in the bloodstream to other parts of the body. The cells may then multiply to form secondary tumours metastases in cancer grading and staging or more parts of the body. These secondary tumours may then grow, invade and damage nearby tissues, and spread again. Cells that make up benign tumours are different to cancerous malignant cells. Cells in benign tumours tend to be quite similar to normal cells. They do cancer grading and staging invade local tissues.

A benign tumour often grows slowly within a capsule or within normal cells which cancer grading and staging the tumour.

A benign tumour tends to look and feel smooth and regular and have a well-defined edge. This is unlike a malignant tumour which may look craggy and irregular, and its edges tend to be mixed up with the nearby normal cells and tissue. The stage of cancer grading and staging cancer is a measure of how much the cancer has grown and spread, cancer grading and staging.

Some cancers are also graded by looking at features of the cancer cells, using a microscope or other tests. The stage and grade of a cancer help to say how advanced it is, and how well it may respond to treatment, cancer grading and staging. As a general rule, cancer grading and staging, the earlier the stage and the lower the grade of a cancer, the better the outlook prognosis.

A common way of staging cancer is called the TNM classification:, cancer grading and staging. When a cancer is staged, a number is given for each of these three characteristics.

For example, in stomach cancer:. So, for a certain case of stomach cancer, a doctor may say something like: There are other staging classifications which are sometimes used for various cancers. For example, a number system is used for some cancers.

Again, the stages reflect how large the primary tumour has become and whether the cancer has spread to lymph nodes or other areas of the body. It can become complicated as each number may be cancer grading and staging into a, b, cancer grading and staging, c, etc.

For example, you may have a cancer at stage 3b. A grade 4 stage is often referred to as an advanced cancer. For example, if you have bowel cancer and it is diagnosed in an early stage then surgery to remove the tumour may be curative.

That is, if the cancer is confined to the lining of the bowel, with no spread to lymph glands nodes or to other parts of the body. However, if the cancer is in a later stage, the primary tumour may or may not be able to be removed, treatment may also involve chemotherapy, and the chance of a cure is reduced. After a cancer is first diagnosed, to get an accurate staging you may need cancer grading and staging tests.

The tests can vary depending on the cancer but may include blood tests and scans such as a computerised tomography CT scana magnetic resonance imaging MRI scancancer grading and staging, a bone scanan ultrasound scanetc.

You may even need an operation to look inside part or parts of your body. Sometimes a cancer cannot be accurately staged until after an operation has been done to remove the primary tumour. The tissues removed with the tumour are examined under a microscope to see how far the cancer cells have grown through the normal tissues, and whether the nearby lymph glands nodes contain cancer cells. There are separate leaflets which give details on the various scans and tests which may be advised to stage a cancer.

Some cancers are also graded. A sample of the cancer a biopsy is looked at under the microscope or tested in other ways. By looking at certain features of the cells, the cancer can be graded as low, intermediate or high.

Some cancers have a slightly different system of grading. For example, breast cancers are graded 1, 2 or 3 which is much the same as low-grade, intermediate-grade and high-grade. Another example is prostate cancer which is graded by a Gleason score.

This is similar to other grading systems, with a low Gleason score meaning much the same as low-grade, and a high Gleason score meaning much the same as high-grade. For some cancers, a doctor will use the information about the grade as well as the stage of the cancer when advising about treatment options and when giving an opinion about outlook prognosis.

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In this article arrow-down How do cancers grow and spread? Stages of Cancer In this article How do cancers grow and spread? What is cancer staging? Why are cancers staged? How are cancers staged? What is cancer grading? How do cancers grow and spread? Local growth and damage to nearby tissues Cancer cells multiply quickly.

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Cancer grading and staging

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