Absolute risk: The risk of developing a disease over a specific period of time.
Complete response: Disappearance of all signs of cancer as a result of treatment; does not always equate to a cure.
Disease-free survival: Length of time after treatment during which no evidence of cancer is found.
Five-year survival: The percentage of patients in a population who have survived at least five years. Five years is the standard for most cancers when discussing survival.
Mean: The average of a group of numbers.
Median: The middle number(s) in a group.
Partial response: Tumor shrinkage by at least 30 percent.
Progression: Spreading or growing disease (by at least 20 percent), with or without treatment.
Progression-free survival: The length of time a patient has survived without growth of the cancer.
Relative risk: The risk of disease in an affected (exposed) group compared with a control (unexposed) group.
Stable disease: The cancer is neither growing nor shrinking.
Adapted with permission of the American Cancer Society.