A branch of medicine that deals with the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of cancer. A medical professional who practices oncology is an oncologist.
The name's etymological origin are the Greek words ὄγκος (óngkos), meaning swelling or burden; and λόγος (logos), meaning study. The term oncology
was used from 1618 in recognition of Claudius Galen's work on abnormal tumors (which he called oncos) during his lifetime (130-200 AD).
Cancer survival has improved due to three main components: improved prevention efforts to reduce exposure to risk factors (e.g., tobacco smoking, alcohol consumption), improved screening of several cancers (allowing for earlier diagnosis), and improvements in treatment.
Cancers are often managed by multidisciplinary cancer teams where medical oncologists, surgical oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists, radiologists, and organ-specific oncologists meet to find the best possible management for an individual patient, considering their physical, social, psychological, emotional, and financial status.
Several modalities in the management of cancer have evolved in steps: surgical oncology, medical oncology (pharmacotherapy for cancer), and radiation oncology. Treatments also include minimally invasive techniques, palliative surgery, and neo-adjuvant treatments.
See reference for more information.
Adapted from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Internet. Accessed on May 5, 2021. Available at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oncology