Primary: First or foremost in time or development. The primary teeth (the baby teeth) are those that come first. Primary may also refer to symptoms or a disease to which others are secondary.
A primary tumor is one that is at the original site at which it arose. For example, a primary brain tumor is one that arose in the brain as opposed to one that arose elsewhere and metastasized (spread) to the brain. The original tumor is sometimes called "the primary."
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Last Editorial Review: 6/9/2016