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Cancer- are mutated stem cells that have undergone structural changes so that they are unable to perform their normal functions
Anatomy and physiology of a cell
- Nucleus RNA/CHON synthesis= cell metabolism= give antimetabolites- to destroy cell metabolism and RNA/CHON synthesis
- MTX, 6 MP = antidote- 5 FU= antogonistic- dec folic acid= anemia
Chromatin threadlike material for DNA synthesis= cell replication/multiplication= give alkylating agent= destroy cell
- 1. Cytoxan, Cisplatin= hemo cystitis= inc fluid intake, frequent emptying of the bladder
- 2. Plant alkaloid- Vincristine, Vinplastin/ oncovin nephrotoxicity= constipation and paresthesia=s/e
1. Benign- grow slowly, not life threatening/glandular adenoma,bone osteoma,nerve cell neuroma,fibroma
2. Malignant- infiltrate surrounding tissue, invade other tissues and produce secondary lesions/adenocarcinoma,

American Cancer Society Warning Signs

Change in bowel, bladder habits

A sore that does not heal

Unusual bleeding or discharge

Thickening or a lump in the breast or elsewhere

Indigestion or difficulty in swallowing

Obvious change in a wart or mole

Nagging cough or hoarseness

Causative Factors
1. Physical- radiation- excessive exposure to sunlight and radiation/ chronic irritation
2. Chemical- food additives- nitrates/ industry- asbestos/pharmaceuticals-stilbesterol/ smoking/alcohol
3. Genetic
4. Viral- Epstein-Barr virus/ Burkitts lymphoma
5. Stress
Diagnostic Procedures and Labs.
1. X- rays
2. CAT scan non invasive, during the patient will lie still- for 1-11/2 H
3. Cytology cell study, invasive, sterile technique, monitor baseline V/S, after apply pressure
4. Radioisotope scan introduction of radioisotope tracer into the clients vein- to determine = organ perfussion determination
5. MRI
6. Mammography- baseline at 35-45 yrs old- no deodorants
7. Lymphangioraphy introduction of dye into web of foot to det tumor stage and involvement
8. Colposcopic exam of the cervix invasive, informed consent, ibuprofen b4 procedure to stage tumor= cancer in SITU- confines to
cervical lining only, stage 2 entire cervix, 3 upper 2/3 of vagina, 4 lower 1/3 of vagina, 4 bladder and rectum
9. Bone marrow biopsy infants = tibia, adult post iliac crest, invasive
10. Hematology
TUMOR marker
1. PSA 4mg/dl N---8 BPH---10 prostate ca
2. Inc ALP prostate, bone and liver ca
3. CA 125 / cancer Ag 125= ovarian ca
4. CEA- carcinoembryonic antigen = colon, rectal, breast and lung ca
5. AFP- alpha feto CHON inc= testicular ca
6. HCG
7. CA 19-9 = GIT ca
8. CA 15-3 = breast ca
9. NSE- neuron specific enolase neuroblastoma
Stages of Tumor growth
N stands for lymph node involvement
M stands for metastasis
2. Satges 0-IV
Early detection:

Seven warning signs

Rectal exam -40 y/o
Hazards of smoking
Oral self examination-annual mouth and teeth
Hazards of excess sun exposure
Pap smear

8. Physical exam 30 y/o Q 3 years, over 40 yearly

a. Carcinoma- epithelial tissue
b. Sarcoma- connective tissue
c. Lymphoma- lymphoid tissue
d. Leukemia blood forming- tissue( WBCs and platelets)
Alkylating agents- interferes with
rapidly reproducing cell DNA

Side effects

Nursing considerations

Bone marrow depression, tremors, confusion,

N/V, bone marrow depression, sterility


Alopecia, bone marrow depression, hemorrhagic

cystitis, dermatitis, hyperkalemia, hypoglycemia,

Check CBC
Extra fluids to flush system
Monitor for infection
Avoid IM injection when platelet is low
Report hematuria, force fluids
Monitor for infection
Give antiemetics

Fluorouracil ( 5-FU )
Mercaptopurine/6 MP
Actinomycin D
Vinca Alkaloids- interfere with
cell division

Hormonal Agents- changes

hormone input into sensitive cells

Nausea, stomatitis, GI ulceration

Diarrhea, bone marrow depression, liver
Oral and GI ulceration,liver damage,bone marrow
depression, stomatitis, alopecia,bloody diarrhea,
Liver damage,bone marrow depression, infection,
alopecia, abdominal bleeding
Hematologic abnormalities,nausea,vomiting,rash,
weight loss
Bone marrow depression, GI sx, rash

Monitor for infection, avoid extravasation

Red urine, N/V, stomatitis, alopecia, cardiotoxicity,

blisters, bone marrow depression
N/V, alopecia,edema of hands,pulmonary
fibrosis,fever,bone marrow depression

Check ECG, avoid IV infiltration, monitor

V/S closely, good mouth care
Observe for pulmonary complications,treat
fever with acetaminophen, check breath
Give antiemetic before administration

Nausea, bone marrow depression

Peripheral neuritis, loss of reflexes, bone marrow

depression, alopecia, GI sx
N/V, stomatitis, alopecia, loss of reflexes, GI sx

Transient fall in WBC or platelets, hypercalcemia,

bone pain

Good mouth care, avoid alcohol,monitor

hepatic and renal function tests
Check liver function tests
Force fluids, good oral hygiene
Teach client to report toxic GI sx promptly

Check reflexes, motor and sensory

function, give zyloprim, avoid IV
Avoid IV infiltration andextravasation, give
antiemetic before administration, acute
bronchospasm can occur if given IV,
Zyloprim given to increase excretion and
decrease buildup of urates
Check CBC, monitor serum calcium,
nonsteroidal antiestrgen

A. Radiotherapy
1. External radiation( cobalt)
Leave markings intact on skin
Avoid creams or lotions, deodorants, perfumes ( vit A and D ointment permitted)
Use lukewarm water to cleanse the area
Assess skin for redness, cracking
Administer antiemetics for nausea, analgesics for pain
Observe skin, mucous membrane,and hair follicles for side effects
No hot water bags, bottles,tape, dont expose area to cold or sunlight
Internal radiation ( cesium, radium, gold
Wear cotton clothing
Internal radiation ( cesium, radium, gold
a. Sealed source- mechanically positioned source of radioactive material placed in body cavity or tumor

Lead container and long-handled forceps in room in event of dislodged source

Save all dressings, bed linens until source is removed, then discard dressings and linens as usual
Urine, feces, and linens not radioactive
Do not stand close or in line with radioactive source
Patient on bedrest while implant in place
Position of source verified by radiography
b. Unsealed Source- unsealed liquid given orally or instilled in body cavity, all fluids are contaminated, greatest danger from body fluids
during the first 24-96 hours
Assign patient to private room
PlaceCaution: Radioactive Material sign on door
Wear dosimeter film badge at all times when interacting with patient( offers no protection but measures amount of exposure)
Do not assign pregnant nurse to patient
Rotate staff caring for patient
Organize tasks
limit visitors
Encourage patient to do own care
Provide shield in room
Use antiemetics
Provide comfort measures, analgesics for pain
Provide good nutrition
B. Skin care
Avoid use of soaps, powders, lotions
Wear cotton clothing, loose-fitting
C. Mouth care
Stomatitis develops 5-14 days after chemo
Symptoms- erythema, ulcers, bleeding
Oral rinses with saline or soft bristled toothbrush
Avoid hot( temperature) or spicy foods
Topical antifungals and anesthesia
D. Hair care
Alopecia commonly seen, alters body image
Assist with wig or hair piece, scarves, hats
E. Nutritional changes
anorexia, nausea and vomiting
Malabsortion and cachexia common
Make meals appealing to senses
Conform diet to client preferences and nutritional needs
Small frequent meals with additional supplements between meals( high calorie, high CHON )
Encourage fluids but limit at meal times
- Perform oral hygiene and provide relief of pain before meal time
- TPN as needed
- Pain relief- 3 step ladder approach
For mild pain- non narcotic meds used ( Tylenol ) along with antiemetics, antideppressants, glucocorticoids
For moderate pain- weak narcotics ( codeine) and nonnarcotics
Severe pain- strong narcotic ( Morphine)
Give pain meds on regularly schedule basis ( preventive approavh) additional analgesics
G. Activity level
Alternate rest and activity
Maintain normal lifestyle
H. Psychosocial Issues
Encourage participation in self-care and decision making
Provide referral to support groups, organization
Hospice care
Principles- based on ability of drug to kill cancer cells
antimetabolites- foster cancer cells death by interfering with cellular metabolic process
Ankylating agents- act with DNA to hinder cell growth and division
Plant alkaloids- obtained from the periwinkle plant, makes the hosts body a less -antitumor antibiotic- affects RNA to make
environment less favorable for cancer growth
Steroids and sex hormones- alter the endocrine environment to make it less conducive to growth of cancer cells
Major Side effects/ Nursing Care
1. GI/ nausea and vomiting
Antiemetics- every 4-6 H
Withold fluids/foods 4-6 H before chemo
Bland diet- in small amount
2. Diarrhea- administer antidiarrheals

Maintain good perineal care

Give clear liquids as tolerated
Monitor K, Na and Chloride levels
Stomatitis- teaching for oral good hygiene, avoid commercial mouthwash
Rinse with viscous lidocaine before meals
Perform a cleansing rinse with plain water
Advise client to suck on Popsicles to provide moisture
3. Thrombocytopenia- avoiding bumping or bruising skin
Protect from injury
Avoid aspirin products
Avoid giving IM injections
Monitor blood count carefully
Assess for and teach of increased bleeding tendencies
4. Leukopenia- careful handwashing, assess respirtory infection, avoid crowds
5. Anemia- rest periods, monitor hemoglobin and Hct, protect from injury, administer oxygen
6. alopecia- explain that hair loss is temporary, offer support and encouragement
Scalp tourniquet or scalp hypothermia via ice pack may be ordered to minimize hair loss with some agents
7. Renal system
8. Reproductive system
Reliable methods of conception
9. Neurologic system
Peripheral neuropathies, loss of deep tendon reflexes, paralytic ileus
BONE MARROW TRANSPLANT- alternative treatment for severe aplastic anemia, etc.
1. Autologous- client transplant with own harvested narrow
2. Syngeneic transplant between identical twins
3. Allogeneic- transplant from genetically nonidentical donor- sibling -common
Donor suitability determined through tissue antigen typing, includes human leukocytes antigen and mixed leukocyte culture typing
Donor bone marrow is aspirated from multiple sites along the iliac crests under general anesthesia
Donor marrow is infused IV into the recipient
Early evidence of engraftment seen during the second week posttransplant, hematologic reconstitution takes 4-6 weeks, immunologic
reconstitution takes months
Hospitalization of 2-3 months required
Prognosis is highly variable
Failure of engraftment
Infection- highest 2-3 weeks, pneumonia
Graft vs. host disease- principal complication
- acute GVHD develops in first 100 days post transplant and affects the skin, GUT, liver, marrow and lymphoid tissue
- chronic GVHD- develops 100-400 days post transplant, manifested by multiorgan involvement
-recurrent malignancy
-late complications- cataracts, endocrine abnormalities
1. Recipient immunosuppression attained with total body irritation and chemotherapy to eradicate existing disease and create space
in host marrow to allow transplanted cells to grow
2. Client should be in laminar air flow room or in strict reverse isolation surveillance,cultures done 2x a week
3. Objects must be sterilized
4. When working with children introduced new people where they can seen
5. Monitor central line frequently, patency and observe for signs of infection
6. Provide chemotherapy and radiation therapy
1. Maintain protective environment, administer antibiotics, wound culture, V/S, change IV sets Q 24 H
2. Provide mouth care- note bleeding, sloughing off
3. Do not use lemon and glycerin swabs.
4. Administer parental narcotics as ordered if necessary to control pain.
5. Provide care every 2 hours or as needed
6. Provide skin care: breakdown may result from profuse diarrhea from TBI.
7 . monitor carefully for bleeding.
8. check for occult blood in emesis and stools.
9. observe for easy bruising , petechiae on skin, mucous membranes.
10. check platelet count daily.
11. replace blood products as ordered (all blood products should be irradiated).
12. maintain fluid and electrolyte balance and promote nutrition.

13. measure I&O carefully.

14. provide adequate fluid, protein and caloric intake.
15. weigh daily.
16. administer fluid replacement as ordered.
17. monitor hydration status: check skin turgor, moisture of mucous membranes, urine output.
18. check electrolyte daily.
19. administer antidiarrheal and agents as needed.
20. provide client teaching and discharge planning concerning
20. Medication regimen: schedule dosages, effects, and slide effects
21. communicable diseases and immunizations
22. daily hygiene and skin care
23. fever.
24. activity.
A. Induction: goal- to remove the bulk of tumor
method- surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, transplant
effect- often the most intensive phase, s/e are potentially life threatening
B. consolidation- goal- to eliminate any remaining malignant cells
- method- chemo/radiation
-effects s/e still be evident
C. Maintenance- goal- to keep child disease free
-method- chemo-lasts for several years
D. observation- goal- to monitor the child at intervals for evidence of recurrent disease and complications of treatment
-method- tx. Is complete
E. Late effects of tx.
-impaired g/d, CNS damage, development of secondary malignancy, psychologic problem
Skin cancer-Risk factors: sunlight 10 am-3 pm, chemicals, immunosuppression
Basal cell carcinoma- most common
- small, waxy nodule on sun-exposed area of body, may ulcerate and crust
Squamous cell carcinoma- rough thick, scaly tumor seen on arms or face
Malignant carcinoma variegated color ( brown, black with gray or white ) circular lesion with irregular edges seen on trunk or
- most lethal, high risk with fair complexion, blue eyes, red or blonde hair, freckles
Cardinal sx: asymmetry, border irregularity, change in color, diameter inc
TX: surg resection, radiation, chemo, immunotherapy
Intracranial Tumors/Brain CA
S/S- motor deficits, hearing difficulties, dizziness, paresthesia ( cerebellum), N/V, seizures ( motor cortex),visual disturbances
( occipital lobe), drowsiness, change in LOC
Risk Factors: radiation, hereditary, cong immune deficiency
Cardinal sx: depends on the site
cerebellar area = most common site/ risk 4 injury
Pons respiratory center/ineffective breathing pattern
Medulla cardiac and visceral organs
Sp. Cord bowel/bladder/sensation of the lower extremities
frontal lobe- altered though process
Retinoblastoma- children, hereditary cause
Cardinal sx: white pupillary reflex, LEUKOCORIA/ cats eye reflex
TX: Upera- enucleation wid implant of prosthesis, radiation
acoustic (CN 8) neuronoma- benign
motor vestibules, balance, vomiting, vertigo,
accessory cochlear- tinnitus, ringing of the eras, hearing loss
mouth or buccal mucosa
Risk Factors: alcohol, cigarette, exposure to sun
Cardinal sx: a sore that doesnt heal- LEUKOPLAKIA- white patches in the buccal mucosa
3 Fs female, 15 young, family hx

Cardinal sx: palpable mole in the thyroid, painless LN enlargement, pain during swallowing and breathing
TX: UR RAI 131 all body fluids are radioactive, 2-3x flushing the toilet ,C
Risk Factors:3 Fs father, forty, frequent smoking and alcohol intake, straining of voice
Cardinal sx: hoarseness of voice, dyspnea, dysphagia
TX: U- laryngectomy R
Risk Factors: Smoking, Alcoholic, Male
Cardinal sx: dysphagia, or difficulty in swallowing
Exogenous estrogen use/Premarin
-Cause by excessive intake of highly salted or smoked foods, diet low in quantity of vegetable and fruits, helicobacter pylori
infection, achlorhydria, atrophic gastritis
-RISK Factors: highly colored smoked food/salty food, alcohol, ELLISON_SOLINGER syndrome ( pancreas secrete Gastrinsecreting tumor), blood type A, diet low in vegs and fruits
-Cardinal sx: indigestion/dyspepsia
-TX: Billroth I and II
RENAL CA= Wilms tumor, Renal cell ca
Risk Factors:
Renal cell ca occurs bet 50-70 years old
Exposure to contrast medium and gasoline
Nephroblastoma occurs at 2-4 y/0/Wilms
Asbestos exposure
Lalaki common/ male
Cardinal sx: RCC= Palpable mass
Painless hematuria
Pain in the flanks
Wilms= abdominal enlargement, NO palpation and biopsy
narcotic, anti emetic, antacid, surgery- rem of pancreas/ whipples
-Risk Factors:Family hx of ca, age 50 and above, Turgots syndrome ( polyps at rectal and GI ), Hx of bowel inflam disease/
ulcerative colitis, Excessive red meat and fat intake, Resected colorectal ca
-ADENOCARCINOMA is the most common type of colon cancer
- men and women 50-60 years old
- Cardinal SX: alteraltion bowel pattern, stool characteristic ( PENCIL LIKE), chronic bleeding and anemia
-caused by diverticulitis, chronic ulcerative colitis, familial polyposis
-S/S alternating diarrhea, constipation, lower abdominal cramps, abdominal distension, weakness, pallor, anorexia, weight loss,
-dx. Test- barium enema, sigmoidoscopy, digital rectal exam
Risk Factors: cigarette smoking, exposure to chemicals, pulmonary irritation and environmental pollution
Cardinal sx: nagging cough, dyspnea, impaired gases-diminished BS, hemoptysis
Risk Factors: Cigarette smoking
Common in men
Cardinal Sx: painless hematuria
TX: U- cystectomy= post urinary diversion Ileal conduit
Risk Factors:
Pancreatitis- autodigestion of pancreas
Nutritional def
Rate of moratality is very high
Excessive fats
Age above 60
Cardinal sx: indigestion,trauma
S/S- weight loss, vague upper or mid-abdominal discomfort, abnormal glucose tolerance test, jaundice, clay colored stools, dark

- Whipple procedure- removal of head of the pancreas, distal portion of the common bile duct, the duodenum and part of the
- complication = hypoallergenic shock- oliguria
CANCER OF THE LIVER- common site for metastasis
Risk factors: Metastasis from other organ,Alcohol and Aflatoxins ( green bread), Cirrhosis and Hep B and C, Africans, Asians,
americans, Oral contraceptive pills
Cardinal Sx: indigestion, dyspepsia
- S/S- enlargement of the liver, hemorrhage, necrosis are common, metastasis to the lungs
- highly in men
LEUKEMIA- most common cancer in childhood
- proliferation of abnormal white blood cells that do not mature beyond the blast phase
- in the bone marrow, blast cells crowd out healthy white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets, leading to bone marrow
- symptoms reflect bone marrow failure and associated involvement of other organs
- ALL- lymphocyte, acute onset, 75 % chance of survival, WBC 10,000/mm3 less than-2-9 y/o
-ANLL- includes granulocytic and monocytic types
S/S- Acute myeloid leukemias
- AUER rods
Excessive weight loss
found only
Unusual bleeding/ epistaxis
Knee and joint pain
Enlarged abdomen
Infection signs, fever, sore throat, stomatitis
Anemias, severe
ALL = Genetics
Exposure to Benzene or gasoline
Nagasaki or HIrushima bomb exposure/ MISO soup
Excessive alkylating agents
T- lymphoma virus
Ionizing radiation
Caucasian children
Cardinal sx: unusual bleeding or d/c
BREAST CANCER- leading cause of death 40-44 y/o for women
Risk Factors:
Advancing maternal age
Breast ca hx
Cigarette smoking and oral intake of contraceptive pills
Diet increase in fats
Early menarche and late menopause
First child after 35 years old or nulliparity
Cardinal sx: palpation-lump- upper outer quadrant- common site- first symptom
- skin of breast dimpled, nipple discharges, asymmetry of the breast,
- after period best time
- HOW- lie down and put a pillow under your R shoulder. Place your R arm behind your head
- use the finger pads of your 3 middle fingers on your L HAND TO FEEL FOR LUMPS OR THICKENING.Your finger
pads are the top thirds of each finger
-Press firmly enough to know your breast feels. A firm ridge in the lower curve of each breast is normal
- Move around the breast in a set way; CIRCLE, UP AND DOWN, OR THE WEDGE. Do it the same way at each time
CANCER OF THE CERVIX- detected by Pap smear
- class I normal pap smear
- class II atypical cells
- class III moderate dysplasia
- class IV severe dysplasia, cancer in situ
- class V squamous cell carcinoma, invasive cancer
Preinvasive conditions maybe treated by cryosurgery, laser surgery, cervical conization, or hysterectomy
Invasive conditions- treated with radium and hysterectomy
- cardinal symptom- abnormal uterine bleeding either pre or post-menopause
- ovarian mass during palpation
- now, examine your L breast using R finger pads using same procedure
- if you find changes, see your doctor immediately

Risk Factors:
Ovarian dysfunction/ amenorrhea
Vague abdl sx, n/v
Age, above 50
Race , whites
Incidence, inc with + hx
Cardinal Sx: Amenorrhea, Abdl enlargement, Ascites, Abdominal bloating
TX: U- oophorectomy= ERT
Risk Factors:
Multiple use of Tamoxifen
Cardinal sx:bleeding irreg
Early menarche
tx: u- TAHBSO
Post menopausal
Age 55 above
Urban living
Sex: F/ sex multiple
Risk Factors: inherited genes ( osteo, sarcomas), radiation tx. (Radium = bone demineralization) Pagets dis., secondar cause of cancer
Cardinal sx: Bone fx, Occassional fatique- intermittent, pain worsens at nite, Nocturnal pain, Edema/swelling/lump
Risk Factors: cigarette smoking, exposure to chemicals, pulmonary irritation and environmental pollution
Cardinal sx: nagging cough, dyspnea, impaired gases-diminished BS, hemoptysis
Risk Factors: Cigarette smoking
Common in men
Cardinal Sx: painless hematuria
TX: U- cystectomy= post urinary diversion Ileal conduit
Risk Factors: Family hx
Cardinal SX : frequency
African American
residual urine
eval of uria flow decrease
Age over 65
STDs/ smoking
TX: U = Horse +R+C
small urinary stream
Hormonal manipulation
Orchiectomy, bilateral, over 70 no tx
Radical prostatectomy, counselling cause impotence
SILDENAFIL/ Viagra, Saw Palmetto Berry- CI in estrogen producing tumors
Extrenal beam/interstitial radiation
Risk Factors: 15-39 y/o
undescended testicles
Cardinal sx: 4 Ls: Lump, pea sized
Loaded heavines radiation to scrotum and groin
Leg pain
TX: U- inguinal orchiectomy
R- lymphatics
HODGKIN CA- malignant ca in the lymphatics
Risk Factors: cause unknown, young males, Epstein Barr virus
Cardinal SX: supraclavicular node, painless, nigth sweats, flu like sx
TX: U -splenectomy= LN dissection/ biopsy 4 Reed-Sternberg cells
R com of alkylating and plant alkaloids= MOPP