NCCN Guidelines for Patients® | Colon Cancer - page 23

23
NCCN Guidelines for Patients™: Colon Cancer
Version 1.2012
Definitions:
Mesentery:
A double layer
of peritoneum attached to
digestive organs
Mutation:
Abnormal
changes in genes
Nonperitonealized:
Not connected to the
peritoneum
Peritoneum:
The lining of
the abdomen
Visceral peritoneum:
The inner layer of the
peritoneum
Part 3: Tests of colon cancer
N category.
The N category reflects how far colon cancer has spread to nearby lymph
nodes. Nearby lymph nodes include the pericolic and perirectal nodes and those found
along the arteries in the area.
• N0
means that there is no cancer in nearby lymph nodes.
• N1
is cancer that has grown into 1 to 3 lymph nodes.
N1a
cancer has spread into 1 nearby lymph node.
N1b
cancer has spread into 2 – 3 nearby lymph nodes.
N1c
means there are tumor deposits in the subserosa, mesentery,
or nearby nonperitonealized tissue but no cancer in lymph nodes.
• N2
is cancer that has grown into 4 or more lymph nodes.
N2a
cancer has spread into 4 – 6 lymph nodes.
N2b
cancer has spread into 7 or more lymph nodes.
M category.
The M category tells you if there are metastases to distant
sites. Colon cancer tends to metastasize to the lungs and liver.
• M0
means that there is no growth to distant sites.
• M1
means there are distant metastases.
M1a
cancer has spread to 1 distant site.
M1b
cancer has spread to 2 or more distant sites or to the surface
of the peritoneum.
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