National cancer plan: progress report - August 2022

Scotland's national cancer plan comes to completion in March 2023. This report uses insights from the available evidence to update on progress against all 68 actions in the plan as at 31 August 2022.

Appendix 2: Glossary of Definitions

Colon Capsule Endoscopy

Used as an alternative to a colonoscopy to examine the colon. The procedure, typically a capsule being swallowed uses a camera to examine the large bowel (colon).


A long, thin, flexible tube with a small camera inside it is passed into your bottom to detect for abnormalities test of the bowels.


A procedure inserting a thin camera into the urethra to look inside the bladder.


Diagnostic test being introduced to identify oesophageal conditions. The Cytosponge is a small capsule which is attached to a fine string. After swallowing, the capsule coating dissolves in the stomach to release a small brush which when removed allows cell collection from the lining of the oesophagus.


A long, thin tube with a small camera inside, called an endoscope, is passed into your body through a natural opening such as your mouth. There are different types of endoscopy.

Faecal Immunochemical Testing

Used in the bowel screening programme, it is a test that looks for blood in a sample of your poo.

Improving Cancer Journey

Part of the Transforming Cancer Care programme, provides individualised holistic needs assessment and care from a dedicated key support worker.

Linear Accelerator

A machine used to deliver radiotherapy.

National Cancer Diagnosis Audit

Research to inform referral guidelines, patient outcomes and support early diagnosis.

Near Me

Video consulting service that enables people to attend appointments from home or wherever is convenient.


A patient's journey from the initial suspicion of cancer, through clinical investigation, diagnosis and treatment.

Positron emission tomography

Diagnostic scan that creates 3 dimensional (3D) pictures of the inside of the body.

Quantitative Faecal Immunochemical Test

Used to test patients with symptomatic bowel disease.


Treatment where radiation is used to destroy cancer cells and their division.


Medical specialty which uses imaging to diagnose and treat diseases.


A software system used to develop databases. For example, the Cytosponge Registry is being developed to capture information on all patients across Scotland.

Systemic Anti-Cancer Therapy

Comprises anti-cancer drug treatments such as chemotherapy and immunotherapy.


A capsule containing 2 tiny cameras which is swallowed to take pictures of the lining of the bowel.

Transforming Cancer Care

A partnership with Macmillan Cancer Support to give all cancer patients access to a key support worker.



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