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Explain the difference between hyperplasia and hypertrophy.

Hypertrophy is enlargement of a single cell and hyperplasia is an increase in the number of cells


If cells divide and form tissue when there is no real need for them it is called a _____?

Neoplasm or neoplastic cells


How do neoplastic cells differ from normal cells?

They don't undergo apoptosis, have no limit to cell division, and are migratory


How are embryonic cells like a neoplasm?

They have no response to apoptosis, have rapid/continuous cell division, large nuclear cytoplasm, have no specific function, anaplastic morphology, adhere loosely together, and are able to migrate


Define cancer initiation.

The changes made to a cell by carcinogens that begin the mutation


Define cancer promotion.

The process in which the initiated cell divides and grows into a tumor


Define cancer progression.

This involves the development of blood supply to the tumor, and subcolonies appear on the original tumor, and cells begin to adapt to adverse conditions.


How is cancer spread throughout the body?

Through a process called metastasis, where cells break off the original tumor and penetrate the blood supply and invade surrounding tissue.


How is cancer classified?

By tissue type, anatomic site, or biologic behavior


Explain oncogene activation.

Proto-oncogenes normally are activated around the 8th day of development. When the normal gene is exposed to carcinogens, they are turned on, and overexpress, upsetting the balance between cell growth and cell limitation


Name a common chemical carcinogen.



What would be considered physical carcinogens?

Tissue trauma (irritation), and radiation


Name another type of carcinogen.

Viral carcinogens (oncoviruses)


Besides viruses/chemicals/trauma, what are some other causes of cancer?

Diet (low fiber/high fat/additives), age, genetics, immune function


How are cancer cells graded?

By how similar they look to the original cells. High grade cancers look very different, while low grade cancers look very similar


Most cancer cells are __euploid, meaning that they have more or less than 46 chromosomes.



What is the difference between clinical, surgical, and pathologic staging?

Clinical is done by biopsy/x-ray/bloodwork/PSA. Surgical is done by physically assessing size/number/sites/spreading. Pathologic is done by looking at tissue harvested during surgery and is the the most definitive


Describe "TNM" staging stand for?

T = Tumor. N = Nodes. M = Metastasis


Describe tumor staging within the TNM system.

Tx = Unassessable. T0 = No primary Tumor. T1s = Tumor insitu (in place). T1,2,3,4 = Size of tumor


Describe nodal staging within the TNM system.

Nx = Unassessable. N0 = No lymph node involvement. N1,2,3 = Increasing node involvement


Describe the "M" in the TNM system of staging.

Mx = Unassessable. M0 = No distant metastasis. M1 = Distant metastasis


For what type of cancer is the TNM system unuseful?

Lymphatic and hematopoietic cancers


In radiation treatment for cancer, what is the difference between Exposure and Dose?

Exposure is the amount of radiation you are exposed to and dose is the amount absorbed.


What are the 2 types of radiation therapy?

Brachytherapy (source within the body), and teletherapy (beam originates outside the body).


Explain the difference between primary prevention and secondary prevention?

Primary = Stop it before it develops (diet, etc.). Secondary = Target the cancer before it spreads/early detection


How should you teach a patient to clean an irradiated spot on the skin?

Wash with soap and water, do not use a washcloth, rinse thoroughly, pat dry, do not move skin targets placed to aid in targeting radiation


What are some precautions for those undergoing radiation therapy?

Use no powders/perfumes/lotions, wear soft clothing, avoid belts/buckles/straps, avoid heat/sun exposure, be aware of dry mouth in head/neck treatment, and be aware of bone break risk for bone radiation


If a radiation patient suffers from alopecia, what do you tell them?

It should grow back in about 1 month after the treatments have stopped


What is mucositis and what nursing measures are done for it?

Ulcerations in the mouth. Examine mouth often, document size/location/character, obtain specimen for lab, brush teeth/tongue with soft brush, rinse with hydrogen peroxide q12 hrs, avoid alcohol/glycerin swabs, rinse/spit salt water, use lip balm, avoid hard/spicy food, VS q4hr, change IV tubing daily, observe for thrombocytopenia, monitor WBC/RBC, avoid catheters, neutropenic precautions.


What is the most common pain med for cancer patients? Others?

Morphine. NSAIDS & Opioids