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.

In medicine, foreign describes something that comes from outside the body. A foreign substance in the body’s tissues, such as a bacterium or virus, may be recognized by the immune system as not belonging to the body. This causes an immune response. Other foreign substances in the body, such as artificial joints, are designed to not cause an immune response.