Common Terms for LMS
Adjuvant Chemotherapy – Having chemo when you are NED
AI – Aromatase inhibitor is a drug that blocks estrogen from being made post menopause
AIM – Chemo combination of Adriamyacin/Ifosfamide/mesna. Adriamyacin is now known as doxorubicin
Angiogenesis – Growth of new blood vessels. Anti-angiogenesis is prevention of growth of new blood vessels
Anti-PD-1 and PD-L1 – immune check point blockade inhibitors (immunotherapy)
Apoptosis – when damaged cells kill themselves
Biopsy – resecting a small bit of the tumor to be examined by the pathologist to determine if it is LMS.
BSO – Bilateral salpho-oopherectomy is surgical removal of both ovaries and tubes
Cancer Vaccine – Vaccine to prevent or eliminate cancer using the body’s own immune system (immunotherapy)
CD47 – A cell protein which is expressed in most LMS tumors and many other cells in the body
CR – Complete response or remission
CT scan – Computerized Tomography scan sometimes referred to as a CAT scan
DFCI – Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston
Differentiated – how much the cells look like healthy tissue vs. cancer. Poorly differentiated cells have lost their original characteristics and are more mutated.
Dx – Diagnosis made by the pathologist.
Er/Pr – Estrogen receptor/progesterone receptor. If the tumor has these receptors then it is hormone sensitive leading to tumor growth.
Gem/Tax – Chemo combination of Gemcitabine and Taxotere
Grade – Grading refers to the appearance of cancer cells under a microscope. The more abnormal the higher the grade and faster growth.
Immunotherapy – Using your own body’s immune system to recognize and kill your cancer cells
LMS – Short for the big word – Leiomyosarcoma
Local recurrence – tumor grows back at the primary site where it began.
Macrophage – An immune system cell that can destroy/remove foreign molecules in the body (good) or stimulate tumor growth (bad)
Margins – destroying the surrounding healthy tissue which may have microscopic LMS cells around the tumor to prevent regrowth. For LMS the ideal clear margin is 2 cm. Without clear margins there is risk of the tumor growing back.
MDA – MD Anderson Cancer Center in Huston, TX
MET – Short for metastasis (a tumor found outside the original site)
MI – Mitotic index. Shows the rate of growth by measuring the amount of cells dividing.
Morcellation – The cutting or shredding of the uterus during hysterectomy
MSKCC – Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (New York)
Necrosis – tissue death
NED – No Evidence of Disease. Refers to whether or not any tumors were found on your CT scan. You can still have cancer cells, but they are not large enough to be found on your scans.
Onc – Oncologist
OS – Overall Survival
p53 Gene – an important gene which controls damaged in cells and destroys them.
Paraffin tissue block – a small slice of tumor embedded in wax to preserve it for future testing.
PD – Progressive disease
PET scan – Positron emission tomography. A procedure similar to CT scan but using a small amount of glucose (sugar) injected into the vein. Because cancer cells often use more glucose than normal cells, the pictures in a PET scan can be used to.
Primary site – where the first mutated cell and tumor began to grow.
PTA – Percutaneous Thermal Ablation. A minimally invasive procedure injecting heat, cold or chemo directly into the tumor to destroy it.
RFA – Radio Frequency Ablation. A procedure injecting radiation directly into the tumor.
RLMS – Retroperitonel LMS
Sarcoma – Cancers of the connective tissues: bone, muscle, fat, ligament. These are either bone or soft tissue. LMS is a soft tissue sarcoma. There are over 60 different types, all not related to each other genetically.
Smooth muscles – the involuntary muscles such as blood vessels, uterus and peritoneum. LMS is a cancer of the smooth muscles which are soft tissue sarcomas
Stage I, II, and III describes the initial tumor size and depth. The bigger, deeper and more mutated the higher the grade.
Stage IV – means there is a distant metastasis to another site in the body and prognosis is worst.
STS – Soft tissue sarcoma versus sarcoma of the bone
TAH – Total abdominal hysterectomy, removal of uterus and cervix through the abdomin.
ULMS – Uterine Leiomyosarcoma
VATS – Video Assisted Thoracic Surgery
VEGF – Vascular endothelial growth factor which is commonly expressed in LMS cells