Skip Navigation
  • Cancer Care Home
  • Our Doctors
  • Our Clinics and Centers
  • Conditions & Treatments
  • Clinical Trials
  • About Us
  • Find a Physician
  • My Account
  • Make a Payment

Staging

To determine how far the cancer has spread, your cancer care team uses a process of analysis known as staging. The stage of your cancer impacts your treatment and the prognosis for recovery.

A number of different staging systems can be used to classify tumors. The TNM staging system assesses tumors in three ways:

  • size of the primary tumor (T)
  • whether it has spread to lymph nodes (N)
  • whether it has spread (metastasized) to other organs (M).

Once the T, N, and M are determined, a number of I, II, III, or IV is assigned, with stage I being early stage and IV being advanced. In general, the lower the number, the less the cancer has spread. A higher number, such as stage IV, denotes a more serious case. Your doctor will review your test results and tell you the stage of your cancer.


 

Find a Cancer Specialist