# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Waldenström's macroglobulinemia

An indolent (slow-growing) type of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma marked by abnormal levels of IgM antibodies in the blood and an enlarged liver, spleen, or lymph nodes. Also called lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma.

warfarin

A drug that prevents blood from clotting. It belongs to the family of drugs called anticoagulants (blood thinners).

wart

A raised growth on the surface of the skin or other organ.

watchful waiting

Closely monitoring a patient's condition but withholding treatment until symptoms appear or change. Also called observation.

watercress

Nasturtium officinale. Parts of the flowering plant have been used in some cultures to treat certain medical problems. It may have anticancer effects. Also called Indian cress.

WBC

White blood cell. Refers to a blood cell that does not contain hemoglobin. White blood cells include lymphocytes, neutrophils, eosinophils, macrophages, and mast cells. These cells are made by bone marrow and help the body fight infection and other diseases.

wedge resection

A surgical procedure to remove a triangle-shaped slice of tissue. It may be used to remove a tumor and a small amount of normal tissue around it.

well-differentiated lymphocytic lymphoma (LIM-foh-SI-tik lim-FOH-muh)

An indolent (slow-growing) type of B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma marked by swollen lymph nodes that usually occurs in people older than 50 years. It is very similar to a form of leukemia called chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). Also called small lymphocytic lymphoma.

Wermer's syndrome

A rare, inherited disorder that affects the endocrine glands and can cause tumors in the parathyroid and pituitary glands and the pancreas. These tumors (usually benign) cause the glands to secrete high levels of hormones, which can lead to other medical problems, such as kidney stones, fertility problems, and severe ulcers. In some cases, tumors inside the pancreas can become cancerous. Also called multiple endocrine adenomatosis and multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 syndrome.

Whipple procedure

A type of surgery used to treat pancreatic cancer. The head of the pancreas, the duodenum, a portion of the stomach, and other nearby tissues are removed.

white blood cell

WBC. Refers to a blood cell that does not contain hemoglobin. White blood cells include lymphocytes, neutrophils, eosinophils, macrophages, and mast cells. These cells are made by bone marrow and help the body fight infection and other diseases.

Whitmore-Jewett staging system

A staging system for prostate cancer that uses ABCD. "A" and "B" refer to cancer that is confined to the prostate. "C" refers to cancer that has grown out of the prostate but has not spread to lymph nodes or other places in the body. "D" refers to cancer that has spread to lymph nodes or to other places in the body. Also called the ABCD rating or the Jewett staging system.

whole cell vaccine

Vaccine made from whole tumor cells that have been changed in the laboratory.

wild clover

Trifolium pratense. A plant whose flowers have been used in some cultures to treat certain medical problems. It is being studied in the relief of menopausal symptoms and may have anticancer effects. Also called red clover and purple clover.

Wilms' tumor

A kidney cancer that usually occurs in children younger than 5 years old.

windpipe

The airway that leads from the larynx to the lungs. Also called the trachea.

Wobe-Mugos E

A mixture made from an extract of the calf thymus gland and enzymes (proteins that speed up chemical reactions in the body) from the papaya plant, the pancreas of cows, and the pancreas of pigs. It has been used in Europe as a treatment for a variety of cancers and for herpes virus infections.

womb

The small, hollow, pear-shaped organ in a woman's pelvis. This is the organ in which a baby grows. Also called the uterus.

wound (woond)

A break in the skin or other body tissues caused by injury or surgical incision (cut).