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NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms


primary treatment  listen  (PRY-mayr-ee TREET-ment)

  The first treatment given for a disease. It is often part of a standard set of treatments, such as surgery followed by chemotherapy and radiation. When used by itself, primary treatment is the one accepted as the best treatment. If it doesn’t cure the disease or it causes severe side effects, other treatment may be added or used instead. Also called first-line therapy, induction therapy, and primary therapy.