Neoplasm is an abnormal mass of tissue as a result of neoplasia.
Neoplasia is the abnormal proliferation of cells. The growth of the cells exceeds, and is uncoordinated with that of the normal tissues around it. The growth persists in the same excessive manner even after cessation of the stimuli. It usually causes a lump or tumor. Neoplasms may be benign, pre-malignant or malignant.
In modern medicine, the term ''tumor'' is synonymous with a neoplasm that has formed a lump. In the past, the term ''tumor'' was used differently. Some neoplasms do not cause a lump.
A neoplasm can be benign, potentially malignant
(pre-cancer), or malignant (cancer).
- Benign neoplasms include uterine fibroids and melanocytic
nevi (skin moles). They do not transform into cancer.
- Potentially malignant neoplasms include carcinoma in situ.
They do not invade and destroy but, given enough time, will transform
into a cancer.
- Malignant neoplasms are commonly called cancer. They invade
and destroy the surrounding tissue, may form metastases and eventually
kill the host.
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