Debulking

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List of terms related to Debulking

Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]


Overview

In interventional cardiology, the term debulking refers to the removal of plaque and thrombus from a blockage or lesion. Devices such as directional and rotational atherectomy are debulking devices.

Debulking is the surgical removal of part of a malignant tumour which cannot be completely excised, so as to enhance the effectiveness of radiation or chemotherapy. It is used only in specific malignancies, as generally partial removal of a tumor is not considered a worthwhile intervention. Ovarian carcinoma and some types of brain tumor are debulked prior to commencing radio- or chemotherapy. It is usually a long and often complicated procedure taking several hours or more to perform, depending on internal involvement and location.

Debulking is also known as cytoreduction surgery; "cytoreduction" refers to reducing the number of cancer cells.



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