Does your report say " Lesion" or " Tumor"?

Cancer patients often here medical practitioners, radiologists and doctors, use terms such as Lesions and tumors. Sometimes they are used interchangeably. However they are not the same and have different medical implications.

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Lets understand the terms so that a diagnosis and its implications are clear to patients.

A “Lesion” is an abnormal change in a tissue or organ of any kind. It could be due to an injury, disease, an inflammation almost any abnormal change involving any tissue or organ due to disease or injury. So typically it is any abnormality. They range from purely harmless ones to some serious ones.

Cells_2011A Tumor on the other hand is a benign or malignant growth of tissue with no specific physiological function, with uncontrolled cellular activity and proliferation. So a tumor is a lesion and a lesion may not be a tumor.

In a  CT scan typically both look like a “mass”. But it is for the doctor to evaluate further and assess the potential risk from it.

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