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False-negative test result
A test result that indicates that a person does not have a specific disease or condition when the person actually does have the disease or condition.
False-positive test result
A test result that indicates that a person has a specific disease or condition when the person actually does not have the disease or condition.
Fatty acid
A major component of fats that is used by the body for energy and tissue development.
Fentanyl
A narcotic opioid drug that is used in the treatment of pain.
Fibrosis
The growth of fibrous tissue.
Fine-needle aspirate
A procedure in which a needle is inserted, under local anesthesia, to obtain a sample for the evaluation of suspicious tissue
Fine-needle aspiration
The removal of tissue or fluid with a needle for examination under a microscope. Also called needle biopsy.
Fistula
An abnormal opening between two areas of the body.
Fluoroscope (floor´esk?p)
Instrument consisting of an X-ray machine and a fluorescent screen that makes it possible to see internal organs in motion.
Fluorouracil (floor-o-YOOR-a-sil), also called 5-FU
A drug that is used as a treatment for cancer. It belongs to the family of drugs called antimetabolites.
Flushing (carcinoid flushing)
Carcinoid syndrome occurs in about 10% of patients with these tumors. In 75% of patients, episodes of severe flushing are precipitated by exercise, alcohol, stress, and certain foods (spices, chocolate, cheese, avocados, plums, walnuts, red sausage, and red wine). With time the flushing may appear without provocation. The character of the flush differs depending upon the site of origin of the tumor. Tumors of the foregut (stomach, lung, pancreas) are associated with a bright-red "geographic" flush of a more sustained duration, as well as lacrimation (the secretion of tears), wheezing, sweating, and a sensation of burning. In ileal tumors, the flush is patchier and more violet in color, intermingled with areas of pallor, and does not last as long. Flushing of either type may be associated with facial edema that may persist and lead to telangiectasia and even facial rosacea.The patient should receive an adequate niacin supplement (nicotinamide rather than nicotinic acid, since the latter causes flushing) and should avoid foods, agents, and activities that precipitate symptoms.
Folic acid (folate)
A B-complex vitamin that is being studied as a cancer prevention agent. Also called folate.
Free radical
A highly reactive chemical that often contains oxygen and is produced when molecules are split to give products that have unpaired electrons (a process called oxidation). Free radicals can damage important cellular molecules such as DNA or lipids or other parts of the cell.
Frozen section
A technique in which tissue is removed and then quick-frozen and examined under a microscope by a pathologist.
Fulguration
Destroying tissue using an electric current.
Fusion scan (MIBG, OctreoScan or other scans)
The fusion scan electronically fuses combines the images from the OctreoScan or MIBG scan or any PET other scan with those of a CT scan rendering a final image that may be superior to those of the individual studies: i.e., a CT scan combined with the radionuclear scan at the same time, with the patient in the same position is very valuable method to obtain precise tumor confirmation localizing information.