The process of finding out whether your cancer has spread and if so, how far. There is more than one system for staging. The TNM system, described below, is one used often. The TNM system for staging gives three key pieces of information: T refers to the size of the Tumor, N describes how far the cancer has spread to nearby Nodes, M shows whether the cancer has spread or Metastasized to other organs of the body. Letters or numbers after the T, N, and M give more details about each of these factors. To make this information clearer, the TNM descriptions can be grouped together into Stages, labeled with Roman numerals. In general, the lower the number, the less the cancer has spread. A higher number means a more serious cancer.