NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms

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The NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms features 7,863 terms related to cancer and medicine.

Browse the dictionary by selecting a letter of the alphabet or by entering a cancer-related word or phrase in the search box.

islet cell carcinoma
(I-let sel KAR-sih-NOH-muh)
A rare cancer that forms in islet cells (hormone-making cells) of the pancreas. Islet cells make several different hormones that affect body functions, including controlling the amount of glucose (sugar) in the blood and helping digest food in the stomach. Functional islet cell carcinomas make extra amounts of these hormones, which can cause symptoms. Nonfunctional islet cell carcinomas do not make extra amounts of hormones, but they may cause symptoms as they grow and spread. Also called pancreatic endocrine cancer.