Abdomen: The belly , that part of the body that contains all of the structures between the chest and the pelvis . The abdomen is separated anatomically from the chest by the diaphragm , the powerful muscle spanning the body cavity below the lungs . See the entire definition of Abdomen
Abdominal: Relating to the abdomen, the belly , that part of the body that contains all of the structures between the chest and the pelvis . The abdomen is separated anatomically from the chest by the diaphragm , the powerful muscle spanning the body cavity below the lungs . See the entire definition of Abdominal
Abdominal cavity: The cavity within the abdomen, the space between the abdominal wall and the spine. See the entire definition of Abdominal cavity
Albumin: The main protein in human blood and the key to the regulation of the osmotic pressure of blood. Chemically, albumin is soluble in water, precipitated by acid, and coagulated by heat. See the entire definition of Albumin
Alveoli: The plural of alveolus. The alveoli are tiny air sacs within the lungs where the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide takes place.
Analysis: A psychology term for processes used to gain understanding of complex emotional or behavioral issues. See the entire definition of Analysis
Angiotensin: A family of peptides (smaller than proteins) that act as vasoconstrictors to narrow blood vessels.
Antihypertensive: Something that reduces high blood pressure (hypertension).
Artery: A vessel that carries blood high in oxygen content away from the heart to the farthest reaches of the body. Since blood in arteries is usually full of oxygen, the hemoglobin in the red blood cells is oxygenated. The resultant form of hemoglobin (oxyhemoglobin) is what makes arterial blood look bright red. See the entire definition of Artery
Ascites: Abnormal buildup of fluid in the abdomen. Ascites can occur as a result of a number of conditions, including severe liver disease and the presence of malignant cells within the abdomen.
Auricle: 1. The principal projecting part of the ear. Also called the pinna.2. Something ear shaped such as the upper chambers of the heart. Also called the atria.Auricle is not to be confounded with oracle. Neither the pinna nor the atria possess oracular powers.
Balance: A biological system that enables us to know where our bodies are in the environment and to maintain a desired position. Normal balance depends on information from the inner ear, other senses (such as sight and touch) and muscle movement. See the entire definition of Balance
Bicarbonate: In medicine, bicarbonate usually refers to bicarbonate of soda (sodium bicarbonate, baking soda) white powder that is common ingredient in antacids. Also, the bicarbonate level is an indirect measure of the acidity of the blood that is determined when electrolytes are tested. The normal serum range for bicarbonate is 22-30 mmol/L.
Biopsy: The removal of a sample of tissue for purposes of diagnosis. (Many definitions of "biopsy" stipulate that the sample of tissue is removed for examination under a microscope. This may or may not be the case. The diagnosis may be achieved by other means such as by analysis of chromosomes or genes.) See the entire definition of Biopsy
Blood: The familiar red fluid in the body that contains white and red blood cells, platelets, proteins, and other elements. The blood is transported throughout the body by the circulatory system. Blood functions in two directions: arterial and venous. Arterial blood is the means by which oxygen and nutrients are transported to tissues while venous blood is the means by which carbon dioxide and metabolic by-products are transported to the lungs and kidneys, respectively, for removal from the body.
Blood clot: Blood that has been converted from a liquid to a solid state. Also called a thrombus . See the entire definition of Blood clot
Capillaries: Capillaries are the smallest of blood vessels. They serve to distribute oxygenated blood from arteries to the tissues of the body and to feed deoxygenated blood from the tissues back into the veins. The capillaries are thus a central component in the circulatory system, essentially between the arteries and the veins. When pink areas of skin are compressed, this causes blanching because blood is pressed out of the capillaries. The blood is the fluid in the body that contains, among other elements, the red blood cells (erythrocytes) that carry the oxygen and give the blood its red color.
Cardiac: Having to do with the heart. See the entire definition of Cardiac
Cavities: Holes in the two outer layers of a tooth called the enamel and the dentin. The enamel is the outermost white hard surface and the dentin is the yellow layer just beneath enamel. Both layers serve to protect the inner living tooth tissue called the pulp, where blood vessels and nerves reside. Small cavities may not cause pain, and may be unnoticed by the patient. Larger cavities can collect food, and the inner pulp of the affected tooth can become irritated by bacterial toxins, foods that are cold, hot, sour, or sweet - causing toothache. Also referred to as caries.
Chest: The area of the body located between the neck and the abdomen . The chest contains the lungs , the heart and part of the aorta . The walls of the chest are supported by the dorsal vertebrae , the ribs , and the sternum . See the entire definition of Chest
Chronic: This important term in medicine comes from the Greek chronos, time and means lasting a long time. See the entire definition of Chronic
Circulation: The movement of fluid in a regular or circuitous course. Although the noun "circulation" does not necessarily refer to the circulation of the blood, for all practical purposes today it does. Heart failure is an example of a problem with the circulation.
Cirrhosis: An abnormal liver condition characterized by irreversible scarring of the liver. Alcohol and viral hepatitis B and C are among the many causes of cirrhosis. Cirrhosis can cause yellowing of the skin (jaundice), itching, and fatigue. Diagnosis of cirrhosis can be suggested by physical examination and blood tests, and can be confirmed by liver biopsy in some patients.
Complications of cirrhosis include mental confusion, coma, fluid accumulation (ascites), internal bleeding, and kidney failure. Treatment of cirrhosis is designed to limit any further damage to the liver as well as complications. Liver transplantation is becoming an important option for patients with advanced cirrhosis.
Clinical: 1. Having to do with the examination and treatment of patients. 2. Applicable to patients. A laboratory test may be of clinical value (of use to patients). See the entire definition of Clinical
Compression: 1. The act of pressing together. As in a compression fracture, nerve compression, or spinal cord compression. 2. To shorten in time. In embryology, there may be compression of development with some stages even omitted.
Condition: The term "condition" has a number of biomedical meanings including the following:
An unhealthy state, such as in "this is a progressive condition."
A state of fitness, such as "getting into condition."
Something that is essential to the occurrence of something else; essentially a "precondition."
As a verb: to cause a change in something so that a response that was previously associated with a certain stimulus becomes associated with another stimulus; to condition a person, as in behavioral conditioning.
Diagnosis: 1 The nature of a disease ; the identification of an illness. 2 A conclusion or decision reached by diagnosis. The diagnosis is rabies . 3 The identification of any problem. The diagnosis was a plugged IV. See the entire definition of Diagnosis
Dialysis: The process of cleansing the blood by passing it through a special machine. Dialysis is necessary when the kidneys are not able to filter the blood. Dialysis allows patients with kidney failure a chance to live productive lives. There are two types of dialysis: hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. Each type of dialysis has advantages and disadvantages. Patients can often choose the type of long term dialysis that best matches their needs.
Disease: Illness or sickness often characterized by typical patient problems (symptoms) and physical findings (signs). Disruption sequence: The events that occur when a fetus that is developing normally is subjected to a destructive agent such as the rubella (German measles) virus.
Diuretic: Anything that promotes the formation of urine by the kidney. (The word "diuretic" comes from a combination of the Greek "dia-", thoroughly + "ourein", to urinate = to urinate thoroughly). See the entire definition of Diuretic
Dysfunction: Difficult function or abnormal function. See the entire definition of Dysfunction
Edema: The swelling of soft tissues as a result of excess water accumulation. See the entire definition of Edema
Esophagus: The tube that connects the pharynx (throat) with the stomach. The esophagus lies between the trachea (windpipe) and the spine. It passes down the neck, pierces the diaphragm just to the left of the midline, and joins the cardiac (upper) end of the stomach. In an adult, the esophagus is about 25 centimeters (10 inches) long. When a person swallows, the muscular walls of the esophagus contract to push food down into the stomach. Glands in the lining of the esophagus produce mucus, which keeps the passageway moist and facilitates swallowing. Also known as the gullet or swallowing tube. From the Greek oisophagos, from oisein meaning to bear or carry + phagein, to eat.
Feet: The plural of foot, both an anatomic structure and a unit of measure. See the entire definition of Feet
Gallop rhythm: Heart rhythm like the gallop of a horse. See the entire definition of Gallop rhythm
Gynecomastia: Excessive development of the male breasts. Temporary enlargement of the breasts is not unusual or abnormal in boys during adolescence or during recovery from malnutrition. Gynecomastia may be abnormal as, for example, in Klinefelter's syndrome.
Heart: The muscle that pumps blood received from veins into arteries throughout the body. It is positioned in the chest behind the sternum (breastbone; in front of the trachea, esophagus, and aorta; and above the diaphragm muscle that separates the chest and abdominal cavities. The normal heart is about the size of a closed fist, and weighs about 10.5 ounces. It is cone-shaped, with the point of the cone pointing down to the left. Two-thirds of the heart lies in the left side of the chest with the balance in the right chest. See the entire definition of Heart
Heart disease: Any disorder that affects the heart. Sometimes the term "heart disease" is used narrowly and incorrectly as a synonym for coronary artery disease. Heart disease is synonymous with cardiac disease but not with cardiovascular disease which is any disease of the heart or blood vessels. Among the many types of heart disease, see, for example: Angina; Arrhythmia; Congenital heart disease; Coronary artery disease (CAD); Dilated cardiomyopathy; Heart attack (myocardial infarction); Heart failure; Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy; Mitral regurgitation; Mitral valve prolapse; and Pulmonary stenosis.
Heart failure : Inability of the heart to keep up with the demands on it and, specifically, failure of the heart to pump blood with normal efficiency. When this occurs, the heart is unable to provide adequate blood flow to other organs such as the brain, liver and kidneys. Heart failure may be due to failure of the right or left or both ventricles. The signs and symptoms depend upon which side of the heart is failing. They can include shortness of breath (dyspnea), asthma due to the heart (cardiac asthma), pooling of blood (stasis) in the general body (systemic) circulation or in the liver's (portal) circulation, swelling ( edema ), blueness or duskiness (cyanosis), and enlargement (hypertrophy) of the heart. See the entire definition of Heart failure
Heart muscle: A type of muscle with unique features only found in the heart. The heart muscle, or cardiac muscle, is medically called the myocardium ("myo-" being the prefix denoting muscle).
Hospital: It may seem unnecessary to define a "hospital" since everyone knows the nature of a hospital. A hospital began as a charitable institution for the needy, aged, infirm, or young. See the entire definition of Hospital
Hypertension: High blood pressure , defined as a repeatedly elevated blood pressure exceeding 140 over 90 mmHg -- a systolic pressure above 140 with a diastolic pressure above 90. See the entire definition of Hypertension
Hypoalbuminemia: An abnormally low blood level of albumin. Normally, albumin is the most plentiful protein in human blood and the key to the regulation of its osmotic pressure.
Idiopathic: Of unknown cause. Any disease that is of uncertain or unknown origin may be termed idiopathic. For example, acute idiopathic polyneuritis , diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis , idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis , idiopathic scoliosis , etc. See the entire definition of Idiopathic
Inflammation: A basic way in which the body reacts to infection , irritation or other injury, the key feature being redness, warmth, swelling and pain . Inflammation is now recognized as a type of nonspecific immune response . See the entire definition of Inflammation
Interstitial: Pertaining to being between things, especially between things that are normally closely spaced. See the entire definition of Interstitial
Kidney: One of a pair of organs located in the right and left side of the abdomen which clear "poisons" from the blood, regulate acid concentration and maintain water balance in the body by excreting urine. The kidneys are part of the urinary tract. The urine then passes through connecting tubes called "ureters" into the bladder. The bladder stores the urine until it is released during urination.
See the entire definition of Kidney
Leg: In popular usage, the leg extends from the top of the thigh down to the foot. However, in medical terminology, the leg refers to the portion of the lower extremity from the knee to the ankle. See the entire definition of Leg
Liver: An organ in the upper abdomen that aids in digestion and removes waste products and worn-out cells from the blood. The liver is the largest solid organ in the body. The liver weighs about three and a half pounds (1.6 kilograms). It measures about 8 inches (20 cm) horizontally (across) and 6.5 inches (17 cm) vertically (down) and is 4.5 inches (12 cm) thick.
See the entire definition of Liver
Liver disease: Liver disease refers to any disorder of the liver. The liver is a large organ in the upper right abdomen that aids in digestion and removes waste products from the blood. See the entire definition of Liver disease
Lungs: The lungs are a pair of breathing organs located with the chest which remove carbon dioxide from and bring oxygen to the blood. There is a right and left lung.
Membrane: A very thin layer of tissue that covers a surface.
Muscle: Muscle is the tissue of the body which primarily functions as a source of power. There are three types of muscle in the body. Muscle which is responsible for moving extremities and external areas of the body is called "skeletal muscle." Heart muscle is called "cardiac muscle." Muscle that is in the walls of arteries and bowel is called "smooth muscle."
Neck: The part of the body joining the head to the shoulders. Also, any narrow or constricted part of a bone or organ that joins its parts as, for example, the neck of the femur bone. See the entire definition of Neck
Nevi: The plural of nevus.
Organ: A relatively independent part of the body that carries out one or more special functions. The organs of the human body include the eye, ear, heart, lungs, and liver.
Paracentesis: The removal of fluid from a body cavity using a needle, trocar, cannula, or other hollow instrument. See the entire definition of Paracentesis
Peripheral: Situated away from the center, as opposed to centrally located. See the entire definition of Peripheral
Peritoneal: Having to do with the peritoneum.
Pleural: Pertaining to the pleura, the thin covering that protects the lungs. The term "pleural" is pronounced like "plural" (but does not have plural meanings).
Potassium: The major positive ion (cation) found inside of cells. The chemical notation for potassium is K+. See the entire definition of Potassium
Protein: A large molecule composed of one or more chains of amino acids in a specific order determined by the base sequence of nucleotides in the DNA coding for the protein. See the entire definition of Protein
Pulmonary: Having to do with the lungs. (The word comes from the Latin pulmo for lung).
Pulmonary edema: Fluid in the lungs.
Reabsorption: Absorbing again. For example, the kidney selectively reabsorbs substances such as glucose , proteins, and sodium which it had already secreted into the renal tubules. These reabsorbed substances return to the blood. See the entire definition of Reabsorption
Rebound: Return of the original symptoms when maneuvers or treatment is discontinued.
Receptor: 1. In cell biology, a structure on the surface of a cell (or inside a cell) that selectively receives and binds a specific substance. There are many receptors. There is a receptor for ( insulin ; there is a receptor for low-density lipoproteins ( LDL ); etc. To take an example, the receptor for substance P, a molecule that acts as a messenger for the sensation of pain , is a unique harbor on the cell surface where substance P docks. Without this receptor, substance P cannot dock and cannot deliver its message of pain. Variant forms of nuclear hormone receptors mediate processes such as cholesterol metabolism and fatty acid production. Some hormone receptors are implicated in diseases such as diabetes and certain types of cancer. A receptor called PXR appears to jump-start the body's response to unfamiliar chemicals and may be involved in drug-drug interactions.2. In neurology, a terminal of a sensory nerve that receives and responds to stimuli. See the entire definition of Receptor
Regimen: With the accent on the first syllable (reg as in Reggie Jackson), a regimen is a plan, a regulated course such as a diet, exercise or treatment, designed to give a good result. A low-salt diet is a regimen.
Renal: Having to do with the kidney. From the Latin renes (the kidneys), which gave the French les reins which mean both the kidneys and the lower back.
Rest: 1. Repose. Relaxation.2. A fragment of embryonic tissue that has been retained after the period of embryonic development. Also called an embryonic rest.
Salt: In medicine, salt usually refers to sodium chloride, table salt, used for seasoning food, for the preservation of meat, etc. Salt is found in the earth and in sea water and is isolated by evaporation and crystallization from sea water and other water impregnated with particles of salt. See the entire definition of Salt
Sense: In biology and medicine, the faculty of sensory reception. The ability to convey specific types of external or internal stimuli to the brain and perceive them. Sensory reception occurs through a process known as transduction in which stimuli are converted into nerve impulses which are relayed to the brain. See the entire definition of Sense
Side effects: Problems that occur when treatment goes beyond the desired effect. Or problems that occur in addition to the desired therapeutic effect. See the entire definition of Side effects
Skin: The skin is the body's outer covering. It protects us against heat and light, injury, and infection. It regulates body temperature and stores water, fat, and vitamin D. Weighing about 6 pounds, the skin is the body's largest organ. It is made up of two main layers; the outer epidermis and the inner dermis.
See the entire definition of Skin
Sodium: The major positive ion (cation) in fluid outside of cells. The chemical notation for sodium is Na+. When combined with chloride, the resulting substance is table salt. See the entire definition of Sodium
Syndrome: A set of signs and symptoms that tend to occur together and which reflect the presence of a particular disease or an increased chance of developing a particular disease. See the entire definition of Syndrome
Syringe: A device used in medicine to inject fluid into or withdraw fluid from the body. Medical syringes consist of a needle attached to a hollow cylinder that is fitted with a sliding plunger. The downward movement of the plunger injects fluid; upward movement withdraws fluid. See the entire definition of Syringe
Systemic: Affecting the entire body. A systemic disease such as diabetes can affect the whole body. Systemic chemotherapy employs drugs that travel through the bloodstream and reach and affect cells all over the body. See the entire definition of Systemic
Testicles: The testicles (also called testes or gonads) are the male sex glands. They are located behind the penis in a pouch of skin called the scrotum. The testicles produce and store sperm, and they are also the body's main source of male hormones (testosterone). These hormones control the development of the reproductive organs and other male characteristics, such as body and facial hair, low voice, and wide shoulders.
Therapy: The treatment of disease . See the entire definition of Therapy
Thrombophlebitis: Inflammation of a vein that occurs when a blood clot forms.
Thyroid: 1. The thyroid gland. Also, pertaining to the thyroid gland. 2. A preparation of the thyroid gland used to treat hypothyroidism. 3. Shaped like a shield. (The thyroid gland was so-named by Thomas Wharton in 1656 because it was shaped like an ancient Greek shield.)
Tissue: A tissue in medicine is not like a piece of tissue paper. It is a broad term that is applied to any group of cells that perform specific functions. A tissue in medicine need not form a layer. Thus,
The bone marrow is a tissue;
Connective tissue consists of cells that make up fibers in the framework supporting other body tissues; and
Lymphoid tissue is the part of the body's immune system that helps protect it from bacteria and other foreign entities.
Uric acid: A breakdown product of purines that are part of many foods. In gout, there are frequently, but not always, elevated levels of uric acid in the blood (hyperuricemia). However, only a small portion of those with hyperuricemia will develop gout.
Urinary: Having to do with the kidneys, ureters, and bladder. The urinary system represents the functional and anatomic aspects of the kidneys, ureters, and bladder.
Urine: Liquid waste. The urine is a clear, transparent fluid. It normally has an amber color. The average amount of urine excreted in 24 hours is from 40 to 60 ounces (about 1,200 cubic centimeters). Chemically, the urine is mainly an aqueous (watery) solution of salt (sodium chloride) and substances called urea and uric acid. Normally, it contains about 960 parts of water to 40 parts of solid matter. Abnormally, it may contain sugar (in diabetes), albumen (a protein) (as in some forms of kidney disease), bile pigments (as in jaundice), or abnormal quantities of one or another of its normal components.
Vascular: Relating to the blood vessels of the body. The blood vessels of the body, as a group, are referred to as the vascular system. See the entire definition of Vascular
Vein: A blood vessel that carries blood low in oxygen content from the body back to the heart. The deoxygenated form of hemoglobin (deoxyhemoglobin) in venous blood makes it appear dark. Veins are part of the afferent wing of the circulatory system which returns blood to the heart. See the entire definition of Vein
Ventricle: A chamber of an organ. For example, the four connected cavities (hollow spaces) in the central portion of the brain and the lower two chambers of the heart are called ventricles.
Vessel: A tube in the body that carries fluids: blood vessels or lymph vessels.MedicineNet