Tumor vs. Nodule - What is the Difference?

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Tumor vs. Nodule - What is the Difference?

by MyUncleHasPC on Tue Jan 27, 2009 12:00 AM

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My uncle was diagnosed with locally advanced PC 5 months ago and it's inoperable because the tumor is wrapped around blood vessels.

He's already completed Gemzar chemo and cyberknife.  The last catscan shows the original tumor was destroyed by the cyberknife, but there are several new "nodules" in his cavity.  The doctor said they can test if they're benign or cancer by inserting a needle and testing it, but I think this would be one more test my uncle would rather not go through.  He plans on going back on chemo regardless.

We're assuming they are cancerous since it's probably a branch-off from the original tumor.  My question is, what exactly is a nodule?  Is it a small tumor or something that will eventually turn into a tumor?  Does this mean the cancer is spreading and the chemo did not work?

RE: Tumor vs. Nodule - What is the Difference?

by MarkB on Tue Jan 27, 2009 12:00 AM

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The term nodule is used to loosely...I have been told that a nodule and a tumor are interchangable.  But my doctor seems to use the word tumor when he is talking about the original Tumor in the head of the pancreas.  He uses the word nodule when he is not sure of the malignancy of what he is looking at, and if he see's spots on the liver he calls them "likely metastasis". 

So, I would ask your doctor to clearify his/her use of the terms.


God bless,


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