Our glossary explains some of the medical and legal terms used in palliative care. Glossary words are underlined in the Topics and Asked and Answered sections, with definitions appearing when you hover on a word.


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A condition caused by the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells. Used to refer to a cancer tumor or to cancer generally.


Growing uncontrollably and abnormally. Used to describe the cells of a cancer tumor or cancer generally.


The spread of a malignant disease from one part of the body to another, caused by the movement of malignant cells through the blood or lymphatic system.


Irregular, purple, patchy discolorations of the skin resulting from slowed blood circulation. One of the physical changes that appear as death nears.

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