A tumor can be an incredibly concerning discovery, but it does not necessarily suggest that cancer exists. A tumor is described as an abnormal mass of tissue, and it is not the same as cancer, which is much more serious. Since many do not understand what a tumor is, they become afraid they have cancer when discovering an unexplained mass on their body.
By understanding key information about a tumor, you can identify the signs of a tumor and know when to seek diagnosis and treatment. The following are the most frequently asked questions about a tumor.
What are the different types of tumors?
There are different types of tumors, and the type of tumor determines the severity. The three types of tumors are:
- Benign tumor
A benign tumor is not cancerous and does not spread, and it most often does not return after removal. A premalignant tumor is not cancerous, but it has the potential to develop into a cancerous tumor. A malignant tumor is a tumor that can grow and spread throughout the body.
What causes a tumor?
The cause of a tumor is still fairly unknown in the medical community, which is why cancer research is so essential as we continue to learn more each year. A tumor develops when cells in the body divide and grow at an excessive rate, forming the body of a tumor. The difference between a benign and cancerous tumor is that a cancerous tumor is capable of invading other tissue and expanding to other areas of the body.
What are the symptoms of a tumor?
Many tumors do not show bodily symptoms, other than an unexplained lump found on the body. The symptoms that are experienced are also largely dependent upon the location of the tumor. For example, a brain tumor may show different symptoms than a tumor in the stomach. The most widely applicable symptoms of a tumor, however, include fatigue, discomfort, a fever, and chills.
How is a tumor diagnosed?
There are a number of different diagnostic procedures a doctor may utilize in determining whether or not the patient has a tumor, including the following:
- CT scan
The doctor is also likely to perform a physical examination, especially if an unexplained sac is found on the body. In the case of brain tumors, other neurological exams may be required as well. After finding a tumor, the main job of a doctor is to determine whether or not it is malignant, which can be done through a biopsy.
What are the treatment options for a tumor?
There are several options a doctor may recommend in order to treat the tumor. Most commonly, either chemotherapy, radiation therapy, surgery, or a combination of the three may be provided in order to treat the tumor. Every tumor is different, and the exact treatment plan is tailored for each individual patient, depending on the location of the tumor and whether or not the tumor is cancerous.
When should I visit a doctor to see if I have a tumor?
You should see a licensed medical professional for an evaluation if you have an unexplained mass that you can physically see and feel or if you have symptoms of a potential tumor. In many cases, there are other explanations for your symptoms. However, it is always best to err on the side of caution and schedule a medical visit for an accurate diagnosis anytime there is a concern of a potential tumor.
How can I prepare for my visit with a doctor?
It is important to stay relaxed and positive, rather than fearing the worst. It can help to understand that no matter what the diagnosis turns out to be, treatment options are available, and you have a team there to support you throughout the process.
What happens next if a cancerous tumor is suspected?
If your primary care physician determines that there is a tumor that may be cancerous, then they may perform a biopsy and/or refer the patient to an oncologist. An oncologist primarily treats patients who have been diagnosed with cancer, but they often offer diagnostic testing as well.
Do you still have tumor-related questions?
If you have questions about tumors or feel as if you may have a tumor based on your symptoms, then call our office today. We are glad to answer your initial questions and schedule you a time to come in for a convenient visit.
Request an appointment here: https://lindenbergcancer.com or call Lindenberg Cancer & Hematology Center at (856) 475-0876 for an appointment in our Marlton office.
Check out what others are saying about our services on Yelp: Tumor in Marlton, NJ.
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