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Glossary of Medical Terminology

ABSCESS
Collection of pus in a localized pocket or cavity

ABSORBENT PRODUCTS
Disposable or reusable pads or garments worn for incontinence, to absorb leaking urine

ACTINIC KERATOSIS
Precancerous skin growth

ADDUCT
Any motion(s) of a particular body part, moving toward the midline of the body

ADJUVANT
Supplement to primary therapy

Ex: radiation following primary treatment of surgery

ALLERGEN
Any substance which will induce an allergic reaction

ALLERGIC CONTACT DERMATITIS
Skin irritation caused by a reaction to an allergen

ALLERGY
Overreaction by the immune system to common or uncommon substances that typically don’t cause reaction in others
Ex: food allergies, dust allergies, chemical allergies, animal allergies

ALOPECIA
Disease causing hair to fall out

ALTERNATIVE THERAPY
Therapies used to treat symptoms and conditions not recognized as traditional treatment, including herbal medications, acupuncture, etc…

ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE
Extreme form of dementia, generally affecting older persons, which results in memory loss and cognitive function

ANAPHYLAXIS
A life-threatening or very severe allergic reaction, also called anaphylactic shock

Ex: bee stings, drug exposure, food ingestion

ANEMIA
Red blood cell count deficiency of hemoglobin or total blood volume

ANGINA
Pain or discomfort caused by coronary artery blockage which prevents oxygen- laden blood from reaching certain areas of the heart

ANGIOGRAM
Diagnostic test utilizing dye and a catheter in the arteries to observe blood vessels and functionality

ANGIOPLASTY
Surgical procedure used to treat blockages and clots, via a small balloon designed to open clogged arteries

ANKLE JOINT
The joint formed by the tibia, fibula and talus bones

Annular: Shaped or forming a ring Antiarrhythmic Agents: Medications used to slow or reduce rapid ventricle contractions

ANTI-INFLAMMATORY AGENTS
Medications used to reduce inflammation

Anxiety: General feeling of fear, worry, apprehension, that disrupts or interferes with normal life functions

ANTIBODY
Specific protein produced by lymphocytes (white blood cells), in order to neutralize antigens, foreign proteins and disease. Uncontrolled production may cause illness. Commonly called immunoglobulin

ANTICHOLINERGICS
Fast acting asthma medications which inhibit nerve receptors, and block reflex bronchoconstriction of the nervous system

ANTIGEN
A substance that may trigger an immune response, including the production of an antibody to defend the body from disease or infection

Commonly called and allergen

ANTIHISTAMINES
Medications that block the negative effects of histamine, a chemical released during an allergic reaction

Typically used to reduce itching sneezing, watery eyes and runny nose

AORTIC VALVE
The one-way valve that allows blood to flow specifically out of the left ventricle and into the aorta

APHASIA
Abnormal production or comprehension of language

APNEA
Medical condition whereby the upper airway collapses repeatedly while sleeping

APPENDICOLITH
A hard stone, generally composed of calcium often seen in the appendix via x-rays and CT scans

APPLECORE (LESION)
Appearance of the typical annular (ringlike) shaped cancer of the colon

The concentric growth around the large bowel tends to resemble an eaten apple

ARRHYTHMIA
An irregular heartbeat

Typically this features rapid ventricular contractions (tachycardia), or a very slow heartbeat (bradycharia), or most commonly, additional or premature beats of the heart

ARTERIES
Blood vessels that carry oxygenated blood away from the lungs to organs of the body

ARTIFACT
Varying types of image distortion and any interference found in x-rays

ARTIFICIAL URINARY SPHINCTER (AUS)
Surgically implanted device used to control involuntary release of urine typically associated with prostate and urinary tract surgery

ASSISTED REPRODUCTIVE TECHNOLOGIES (ART)
Various fertility treatments that including artificial insemination (AI), in vitro fertilization (IVF), and sperm microinjection techniques

ASTHMA
Ongoing or chronic, inflammatory lung disease caused by allergens, infection, etc, which results in the narrowing of airways provoking difficulty in breathing, coughing and wheezing

ATAXIA TELANGIECTASIA (AT)
Degenerative, progressive, disease, which may result in the degeneration of the nervous system, cancer, and immunodeficiency

ATHEROSCLEROSISATHEROSCLEROSIS
Medical condition in which lipids (fats) collect within damaged artery walls, narrowing or blocking the artery and obstructing proper blood flow

ATHLETE’S FOOT
Irritating and often recurring infection of the foot, caused by a mold like fungus

ATONY
Absence of muscle tone, typically leading to temporary weakness

ATOPY
The hereditary presence of certain antibodies associated with allergic reactions

ATRIA (ATRIUM)
Upper chambers, both right and left of the heart

ATRIAL FIBRILLATION
An abnormal heart rhythm which may increase the risk of stroke, due to forming blood clots in the heart

ATROPHY
Wearing down or wasting away of tissue, cell, or organs

AURA
The body’s warning symptoms (blurred vision, hallucinations, olfactory alerts) that occur prior to neurological events, including migraines and seizures

AUTISM
Developmental disability occurring by itself or with other disorders affecting the function of the brain

Examples may include viral infections, metabolic disturbances, mental retardation, and epilepsy

Typical symptoms include impaired social interaction, communication skills, repetitive movements and behaviors

AUTOIMMUNE
Refers to any abnormal response of the immune system which causes antibodies and immune-mediated cells to attack one’s own tissues

AUTOLOGOUS
Medical term meaning derived from an individual Atrioventricular Node (AV Node): Patch of specialized heart tissue located between the atria and the ventricles responsible for conducting contractile impulses from the atria to the ventricles

AXON
The inner core of peripheral nerves

BASAL CELL CARCINOMA
The most common type of skin cancer, stemming from basal cells

Basal cells: The cells that form the bottom layer of the epidermis

BASAL CELL CARCINOMA
Structures deep in the brain responsible for motor movements

BELL’S PALSY
The paralysis of the facial nerve, which produces distortion on one side of the face

BENIGN
Non-cancerous

BENIGN PROSTATIC HYPERPLASIA (BPH)
Commonly called an enlarged prostate, resulting from aging

BETA-BLOCKERS
Medications drugs that reduce stress on the heart by blocking the effect of adrenaline

BETA2 AGONISTS
Fast-acting drugs that cause muscle relaxation and bronchoexpansion to relieve asthma symptoms

BIFURCATION
The division of a single structure (usually vascular) into two paired structures

BILATERAL
Meaning, affecting both sides of the body or two paired organs, e.g., the lungs

BIOFEEDBACK
Therapeutic training where participants learn to control their involuntary nervous system through response to electric stimuli

BIOLOGIC THERAPY
Systemic therapy using interferon or interleukin Biopsy: Meaning either: to remove a sample of tissue for diagnostic evaluation; or the tissue specimen itself

BLADDER
The hollow, muscular organ that stores urine until it is excreted

BLADDER TRAINING
The involuntary closure of the eyelids

BLOOD CLOT
Mass of insoluble blood

BLOOD CULTURE
Examination of a blood sample in a lab to detect any presence of disease- causing microorganisms

BLOOD PRESSURE MEASUREMENT
Measure of the force of blood flow against artery walls taken using an inflatable cuff, inflating bulb, and a pressure gauge

BLOOD THINNERS
Medications used to prevent blood clotting

BONE
Hard connective tissue made primarily of osteoblasts, osteocytes, and collagen, which support and protect the body

BONE SCAN
Study used for detecting the presence of boney metastasis

BONE SURVEY
Radiologic study used to detect fractures and/or boney destruction

BRACHYMETATARSIA
Medical condition in which one of the five long bones of the foot is abnormally short, making the correlating toe short

BRACHYTHERAPY
Radioactive pellets applied to the body used to treat some cancers

BRADYKINESIA
The slowing down of motor movements due to dysfunction of the basal ganglia and related structures

BRAIN INJURY
Meaning either a closed head injury (CHI) or an open head injury (OHI)

BRAINSTEM AUDITORY EVOKED POTENTIAL
A test which measures how much auditory stimulus is needed to cause a brainstem response

BRONCHI/BRONCHUS
The larger air passages that connect the trachea to the lungs

BRONCHIAL PROVOCATION
Any test used to diagnose asthma

BRONCHITIS
An inflammation of the bronchi that causes a persistent cough and phlegm production

BRONCHOCONSTRICTION
The constriction of the bronchial airways, resulting in shortness of breath, tightness in the chest, coughing, and/or wheezing

BRONCHODILATOR DRUGS
Group of medications that that widen the airways in the lungs

BULLA/BULLAE
Commonly called blisters, these are sharply circumscribed, elevated, fluid- filled lesions in the skin that are over 0.5 centimeters in diameter

BUNION
A bulge or bump on the inner side of the foot, near the base of the first toe, caused by poor alignment of the joint of the big toe

BURSA
Fluid filled sac, generally found in areas where muscles or tendons rub against the bone

BURSITIS
Condition occurring once a bursal sac has become inflamed as a result of injury

CALCANEUS
The largest bone in the foot, aka the heel bone

CALCIFICATIONS
Dense, stonelike formations that appear in the arteries, veins, kidneys and gallbladder

CALCIUM-CHANNEL BLOCKERS
Medications that drugs that restrict calcium entry into the cells and stimulate contraction

CALLUS
An area of skin that grows thick as a result of repeated pressure and friction

CANDIDIASIS
Any infection of the skin, including mucous membranes, and sometimes internal organs with the yeast Candida

CARBUNCLE
Infection involving a cluster of hair follicles, resulting in a large area of redness and swelling

CARCINOMA
A type of cancer that has the ability to spread (metastasize) to other areas

CARDIAC CATHETERIZATION
A diagnostic procedure using a catheter, which is passed into the heart through a vein or an artery to withdraw samples of blood, measure pressures, and inject x-ray contrast materials

CARDIAC TRANSPLANTATION
The replacement of a damaged or diseased heart with a healthy heart from a donor

CAROTID ARTERIES
Pairs of arteries that arise from the aorta or branch of the thoracic aorta

CARTILAGE
Specific type of connective tissue found on the ends of bones used to protect and cushion them, and absorb the forces transmitted throughout the body

CAT SCAN
A computerized axial tomography is a specialized x-ray, providing images of the brain, spinal structures, chest, abdomen and pelvis

CATAPLEXY
The sudden loss of postural tone, resulting in complete collapse

CATHETER
A tube passed through the body used to drain fluids, inject fluids into body cavities, and perform specific tests

CATHETERIZATION
The insertion of a catheter

CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM
Comprising the brain and the spinal cord

CEREBRAL ANEURYSM
Any weakness in the wall of a blood vessel in the brain

CEREBROSPINAL FLUID
Fluid surrounding the brain and the spinal cord

CEREBROVASCULAR DISEASE
Disorder in the blood vessel that supply the brain

CHANCRE
Syphilitic primary ulcers

CHARCOT FOOT
Collapse and fracture of the foot, often seen in diabetic patients suffering from neurological problems

CHARCOT-MARIE-TOOTH DISEASE
A progressive debilitating neuromuscular disorder; also known as hereditary motor sensory neuropathy and peroneal muscular atrophy Chemolysis destruction via chemicals

CHOLESTEROL
Waxy, soft type of fatty lipid that circulates in the blood, and is also the building block for many sex hormones and all cell membranes

CIRCLE OF WILLIS
Articles in a circle at the base of the brain that is fed by carotid arteries and vertebral arteries

CLONUS
An increase in involuntary muscle tone and following movement that results in spasm

CLUSTER HEADACHE
Severe pain around the eye that usually occurs at night and on one side only

COLON
The tubular structure spanning from the stomach to the anus made up of the small and large intestine

COLONOSCOPY
Test using fiber optic tubing inserted into the rectum and passed into the beginning of the large bowel which allows the physician to view the bowel walls

COMA
A state of unconsciousness, in which the eyes are closed

COMEDO/COMEDONES
A thickened secretion of dead skin cells and oily material clogging a follicle or pore

CONGESTIVE HEART FAILURE
A potentially life-threatening condition condition whereby congestion develops in the lungs as a result of a heart attack, uncontrolled hypertension, or disease processes that have weakened the heart

CONSCIOUS SEDATION
Drugs that produce grogginess and amnesia of a medical procedure

CONTACT DERMATITIS
The reaction that occurs skin comes into contact with a substance that the body is allergic to

COR PULMONALE
Enlargement followed by failure of the right ventricle of the heart brought about by lung disease

CORE NEEDLE BIOPSY
Biopsy used by a pathologist to detect tissue abnormality

CORNS
Typically hard and round with a translucent center, these are thickened areas of skin that form in response to excessive pressure and friction

CORONARY ANGIOGRAPHY
X-ray imaging of coronary arteries via a catheter

CORPORA CAVERNOSA
Sponge-like tissue chambers of the penis that fills with blood during an erection

CORTICOSPINAL TRACT
Nervous system structures beginning in the brain, traveling to motor neuron cells in order to innervate the motor nerves

CORTICOSTEROIDS
Anti-inflammatory medications similar to natural hormones produced by the cortex of the adrenal glands

CREATININE
The waste products which are filtered from the blood via the kidneys and expelled in urine

CROHN’S DISEASE
An inflammatory disease most prominent in the small bowel, but which may involve any part of the G.I

tract and other organs, typically associated with diarrhea and irritable bowel

CRUST
Any scab-like coating of dried blood, pus, or drained fluids that cover wounds or damaged skin

CRYOSURGERY
Application of liquid nitrogen to destroy a skin lesion

CRYOTHERAPY
The therapeutic use of cold, such as ice

CT KUB
Computerized tomography of the pelvis and abdomen, whereby no oral or intravenous dyes are used, typically used to detect conditions such as acute appendicitis, or kidney stones

CURETTAGE AND DESICCATION
Surgical technique by which a curette is utilized for scraping tissue, followed by drying and burning of the tissue with electrocautery

CURETTE
Surgical tool with a round, hollow, sharp tip often used to scrape tissues

CUTANEOUS
Related or pertaining to the skin

CUTANEOUS T-CELL LYMPHOMA (CTCL)
Cancer of the T cells, which has the ability to spread but is often confined to the skin

CYST
A sac that contains semisolid or liquid contents

CYSTECTOMY
The surgical removal of the bladder

CYSTOCELE
Abnormal herniation of the bladder into the vagina

CYSTOSCOPY
Medical procedure where a flexible scope is inserted into the bladder via the urethra to determine abnormalities in the bladder or urinary tract

DANDER
Microscopic scales coming from hair feathers or skin that may cause allergies

DE NOVO
Meaning, “in a new manner or form
DEEP TENDON REFLEXES
Muscle stretch reflexes trigged by tapping or lightly hitting the tendons

DELTOID LIGAMENT
The complex of four ligaments which assist in supporting the medial side of the ankle joint

DEMENTIA
Loss of cognitive function which may affect language, memory, personality, abstract reasoning

DEMYELINATION
The destruction of the myelin sheath that envelopes the nervous system’s structures

DEPIGMENTATION
The loss of pigment typically in skin, and most often melanin

DERMATITIS
Any inflammation and/or irritation of the skin

DERMIS
The second layer of skin, which is comprised of a network of collagen and elastic fibers, blood vessels, and nerves

DESICCATE
Meaning “to dry up”

DETRUSOR-EXTERNAL SPHINCTER DYSSYNERGIA
The lack of coordination between the external sphincter muscle and the bladder, resulting in an inability to empty the bladder

May cause severe urinary tract damage and fatal infections

DIABETES MELLITUS
A common form of diabetes in which the body cannot properly store or use glucose which is the body’s main source of energy

DIASTOLIC PRESSURE
The arterial pressure measured when the heart is resting between beats

DIGOXIN OR DIGITALIS
Medications used to treat congestive heart failure via increasing the force of contraction; conversely, they may be used to treat atrial fibrillation by slowing down the transmission of atrial electrical impulses

DISEASE-FREE SURVIVAL
The percentage of disease survivors who are still alive after a specified period of time

DIURETIC
Medication used to treat high blood pressure and reduce fluid retention by increasing the elimination of salt and water by the kidneys

DNA (DEOXYRIBONUCLEIC ACID)
Genetic blueprint found in all cells

DORSIFLEX
Any upward motion of a body part

DUODENUM
The first segment of the small bowel

DUST MITES
Microscopic organisms that feed on dead skin, whose feces are environmental allergens often triggering asthma

ECHOCARDIOGRAM
The record produced by echocardiography

ECHOCARDIOGRAPHY
A noninvasive cardiac imaging procedure which is used to diagnose heart disease, valve disorders weakened heart muscle, fluid around the heart, and other problems by reflecting sound waves off the heart

ECZEMA
Rash-like disorder of the skin typically marked by inflammation, itching, blisters, and scales

EDEMA
Swelling due to fluid retention

EJACULATION
The ejection of semen via the penis during male orgasm

EJECTION FRACTION
(EF) is a measurement, expressed as a percentage, of how much blood the left ventricle pumps out with each contraction

ELECTROCARDIOGRAPHY/ELECTROCARDIOGRAM (ECG, EKG)
The percentage of blood ejected out of the left ventricle into the aorta with each heart beat

ELECTROENCEPHALOGRAM (EEG)
A test used to study brain wave activity, commonly used to evaluate seizure disorders

ELECTROHYDRAULIC LITHOTRIPSY (EHL)
A technique which utilizes small shock waves to break up kidney stones

ELECTROMYOGRAPHY/ NERVE CONDUCTION STUDY (EMG/NCV)
Tests used to study nerves and muscles for diagnosis of disorder, with electrical conduction studied in the NCV

ELECTRON-BEAM RADIATION
For of radiation therapy whereby beams penetrate the skin only, therefore reducing internal side effects

ENCEPHALITIS
The inflammation or infection of the brain

ENDOCARDITIS
An inflammation and infection of a heart valve or lining of the heart’s chambers

ENDOTHELIUM
The layer of epithelial cells lining the cavities of the heart, blood vessels, and the serous cavities of the body

ENTEROCELE
Abnormal herniation of the small bowel into the vagina

EPIDERMIS
The top layer of skin composed of squamous cells, basal cells, melanocytes, and other cells

EPIDIDYMIS
The coiled tube that extends the length of each testis to connect with the vas deferens

EPILEPSY
Disorder resulting from temporary brain dysfunction which produces convulsive or nonconvulsive seizures

EROSION
Any moist, slightly depressed area of skin where epidermis has been removed

ERYTHEMA
Noticeable redness and warming of the skin, often caused by inflammation due to trauma or infection

ERYTHRODERMA
Diffuse reddening of the skin, resulting from one of many disorders including psoriasis, eczema, drug sensitivities, or lymphoma

ESOPHAGUS
The muscular tube beginning at the back of the throat, which passes through the neck and chest, and enters the stomach

ESPHAGOGASTRIC-EUODENOSCOPY (EGD)
A test used to observe the esophagus, stomach, and a portion of the small intestine

ESTROGEN
The hormone produced in the ovaries that are responsible for the development of female sex characteristics

EVERSION
Any motion of a body part as it tilts away from the midline

EVOKED POTENTIALS
A series of electrophysiological tests used to evaluate the function of specific nervous system elements associated with multiple sclerosis

EXACERBATION
Meaning a “worsening of symptoms.
EXCISE
Meaning “to cut out.
EXCISIONAL BIOPSY
The surgical removal of tissue for pathological analysis

EXFOLIATION
The shedding of top layers of the epidermis

EXTERNAL-BEAM RADIATION THERAPY
Treatment which uses external-beam radiation

EXTRACORPOREAL SHOCK WAVE LITHOTRIPSY (ESWL)
Highly targeted electrical impulses that are projected from outside the body to destroy kidney stones

EXTRINSIC ASTHMA
Form of asthma triggered by an allergic reaction, typically via inhaling something

FASCICULATION
Twitching of the muscles that are commonly seen in diseases of the peripheral nervous system

FIBRILLATION
Uncontrolled rapid contraction of the fibers in the heart occurring in the atrial, or upper, chambers (atrial fibrillation) and in the ventricular, or lower, chambers (ventricular fibrillation)

FIBROSIS
The formation of fibrous tissue after an injury

Commonly called scar tissue

FINE NEEDLE ASPIRATE (FNA)
The insertion of small gauge needle into an area of abnormality with an attempt to pull out small amounts of tumor for review by a pathologist

FIRST METATARSAL PHALANGEAL JOINT (1ST MTJ)
Place where the big toe connects to the foot

FISSURE
A linear split or crack, typically in areas of chronic inflammation and skin thickening such as calluses on hands and feet

FLEXIBLE SIGMOIDOSCOPY
The insertion of a small-sized tube into the rectum to visualize the rectum and a portion of the colon

FOLLICLE
A tiny tubular structure in the skin, contiguous with the top skin layer that includes the canal, the hair shaft, the sebaceous gland, and the muscle anchored to the follicle’s side wall

FOLLICULITIS
inflammation and/or infection of the hair follicle

FUNGUS
A member of the group of plantlike organisms that do not have leaves or flowers and live off organic matter such as hair, skin, and nail cells

FURUNCLE
Inflammation and infection of the hair follicle

GADOLINIUM
Contrast agent used intravenously during an MRI

GAIT
The manner of walking

GALLIUM SCAN
A nuclear medicine study used to monitor gallium-avid lymphomas

GAMMA-KNIFE RADIATION
Type of radiosurgery used to treat brain tumors and vascular lesions

GANTRY
Doughnut – shaped device used for CT or MRI

GASTROESOPHAGEAL JUNCTION
Junction between the esophagus and stomach providing for one way ingestion to the stomach

GI
Referring to gastrointestinal

GOUT
Systemic disease caused by the buildup of uric acid crystals in the joints causing inflammation, swelling, and pain

GOUT
Systemic disease caused by the buildup of uric acid crystals in the joints causing inflammation, swelling, and pain

GRADE
The system used to classify the aggressiveness of a tumor

GRANULOCYTES
White blood cells used for fighting infection

HABIT TRAINING
A behavioral modification technique that establishes set toileting at regular intervals

HAMMERTOES
Common deformity resulting from a muscle imbalance in the foot

HEART MURMUR
Sound caused by the turbulent flow of blood from the left ventricle across the mitral valve and back into the left atrium

HEEL SPUR
The condition in which a small piece of bone has pulled away from the calcaneus

HEMATEMESIS
Vomiting blood

HEMATURIA
The presence of blood in the urine, visible or microscopic

HEMIPARESIS
Weakness affecting one side of the body

HEMOPTYSIS
Coughing up blood

HUMAN IMMUNODEFICIENCY VIRUS (HIV)
Virus affecting the immune system and causes AIDS

HEMORRHAGE
Bleeding

HEPARIN
Medication that inhibits blood clotting

HER2-NEU
A protein indicative of aggressive cancer

HISTAMINE
A chemical present in cells, which is released during an allergic reaction

HOMOGRAFT VALVE
An aortic valve that has been taken from a donor and used to replace a diseased heart valve

HORMONAL THERAPY
Systemic therapy to block actions of specific hormones; use of antiandrogens to deprive cancer cells of testosterone needed for growth

HOSPICE
Home-based support and health care for terminally ill patients and their families

HUMAN IMMUNODEFICIENCY VIRUS (HIV)
Virus affecting the immune system and causes AIDS

HYDROCELE
Common, painless swelling of the scrotum caused by a collection of fluid around the testicle

HYPERCHOLESTEROLEMIA (HIGH CHOLESTEROL)
Disproportionate amounts of lipids (fats) in the blood, including low-density lipoproteins (LDL), high-density lipoproteins (HDL), and triglycerides

HYPERMOBILITY
The inability of the pelvic floor muscles to provide support for the urethra and bladder neck, causing the bladder neck to drop, and leading to involuntary leakage

HYPERPIGMENTED
Increase of pigment

HYPERPLASIA
Excessive growth of the normal cells of a specific organ

HYPERTENSION (HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE)
The increased resistance to blood flow through small blood vessels, forcing the heart to work harder

HYPOPIGMENTED
Lightening or decreasing of pigment

IDIOPATHIC
Meaning “without a known cause.
IDIOPATHIC PERICARDITIS
The inflammation of tissues of the pericardium, without a known cause

IMMUNE CELLS
All of the cells produced in our bodies that protect us from disease-causing agents by producing antibodies

IMMUNE SYSTEM
The collection of cells, proteins, and lymphatic tissues that protect the body from harmful, infectious microorganisms

IMMUNITY
Insusceptibility as a result of previous exposure to an infectious agent, either naturally or by vaccination

IMMUNOGLOBULINS
Proteins found in blood and tissue fluids produced by B-lymphocyte cells in the immune system, which bind to foreign substances in order to destroy them; also called antibodies

IMMUNOTHERAPY
The preventive, progressive, anti-inflammatory treatment for allergies to substances such as pollens, dust mites, fungi, and insect venom; also called allergy shots

IN-SITU
Confined only to the top layer or epidermis

INCISIONAL BIOPSY
The surgical removal of tumor tissue through an incision

INFLAMMATION
Redness, swelling, heat, and/or pain in a tissue caused by injury, infection, or sensitivity to an allergen

INSEMINATION
The deposit of semen into the uterus, cervix, or vagina

INTERSTIM CONTINENCE CONTROL THERAPY
Type of therapy used to treat urge incontinence

INTERSTITIAL LASER
A laser probe used to destroy prostatic tissue and to allow easier urination

INTRINSIC ASTHMA
Asthma with no obvious external cause

INTRINSIC SPHINCTER DEFICIENCY (ISD)
The weakening of the urethra sphincter muscles

INTUSSUSCEPTIONS
Occurs when one section of intestine slips over the next, like a sheath

INVASIVE PROCEDURE
A medical examination that invades the body by incision or by insertion of an instrument through the skin

INVERSION
Any motion of a body part as it tilts toward the midline

IRRITABLE BLADDER
Involuntary contractions of muscles in the bladder resulting in uncontrolled urination

IRRITANT CONTACT DERMATITIS
Type of dermatitis caused by irritating chemicals that come into contact with the skin

ISOLATED SYSTOLIC HYPERTENSION
A condition usually found in the elderly in which the systolic blood pressure is exclusively elevated

ISCHEMIA
Lack of blood flow often caused by constriction or obstruction of a blood vessel

KEGEL EXERCISES
Specific exercises to strengthen the muscles of the pelvic floor in order to control urination and prevent leakage

KERATOACANTHOMA
Typically benign, rapidly growing skin tumor that regresses spontaneously

KIDNEY
One of a pair of organs located at the back of the abdominal cavity responsible for urine through blood filtration

KIDNEY STONE
A hard mass composed of urine elements that form in the kidneys

LACUNAR
A subtype of stroke affecting the deeper parts of the brain involving the tiny perforating arteries

LAPAROSCOPIC LYMPH NODE DISSECTION (LLND)
A procedure using a laparoscope to obtain a tissue sample from a lymph node

LAPAROSCOPY
Typically a less invasive surgery, utilizing a laparoscope to visualize internal organs via a small incision

LARGE BOWEL
3- foot section of the gastrointestinal tract beginning in the lower right side of the abdomen; aka the colon

LASER
Device that produces light in a coherent, intense beam, used in surgeries

LATERAL
Referring to any plane or movement that inclines away from the center or midline

LATERAL COLLATERAL LIGAMENTS
Complex of three ligaments that helps support the lateral side of the ankle joint

LEFT VENTRICULAR ASSIST DEVICE (LVAD)
A complex, synthetic pump that is implanted in the body to assist the left ventricle in pumping blood

LIGAMENT
A substance made of fibrous tissue that helps connect and stabilize joints, strengthening any gap between two or more bones, cartilage, or muscles

LIQUID NITROGEN
The liquid form of nitrogen gas (-195 degrees Celsius) used to treat various skin lesions in cryosurgery

LITHOTRIPSY
The liquid form A procedure utilizing ultrasonic shock waves to break up stones in the urinary tract

LUMBAR PUNCTURE (SPINAL TAP)
The removal and analysis of some of the cerebrospinal fluid from the base of the spine commonly used to diagnose meningitis or nervous system syphilis

LUNG
One of a pair of an organ of the thorax whose contractions and expansions during respiration deliver oxygen to the blood

LYME DISEASE
A disease affecting the joints, nervous system, and heart which is transmitted by the deer tick

MACULE
A small area of skin different in color to the majority of the body, but even with surrounding skin

MALIGNANT
A cancerous tumor or other disease state that has a debilitating course

MEDIAL
Means inclining toward the center or midline of the body

MELANOCYTES
The cells which are intermingled with the basal cells in the bottom layer of the epidermis which produces pigment globules known as melanin

MELANOMA
Skin cancer originating in a melanocyte

MELENA
Blood appearing in the stool, typically loosely formed or liquid

MENINGITIS
Inflammation or infection of the meninges, the three thin membranes surrounding the brain

METATARSALS
The five bones that run from the center of the foot to the beginning of the toes

METASTASIZE
Meaning “to spread from one part of the body to another.

METASTASIS
The spread of disease from one organ or part to another

MENOPAUSE
The time period that marks the permanent cessation of menstrual activity

METERED-DOSE INHALER (MDI)
The most common device for administering quick-relief asthma medications

MIDLINE
An invisible reference line that runs longitudinally and divides a body or object in half

MIGRAINE
A headache characterized by throbbing, one-sided pain, which may be accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and aura

MITRAL VALVE
A one-way valve allowing blood to pass from the left atrium into the left ventricle and normally prohibiting its reentry

MIXED INCONTINENCE
Stress and urge incontinence occurring at the same time

MOTOR NEURON CELLS
Any cells located in the spinal cord that give rise to nerves that supply the muscles

MULTI-INFARCT DEMENTIA
Form of dementia brought on by the cumulative effect of multiple strokes

MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS (MS)
A chronic neurological disorder that affects the central nervous system

MUSCULAR DYSTROPHY
A congenital disorder resulting in muscular weakness and dysfunction

MYASTHENIA GRAVIS
A disorder affecting the space between the nerve and the muscle resulting in transient motor weakness of the face and limbs

MYELIN
Outer lipid layer that covers nerves and nervous system pathways in the brain and spinal cord

MYELOSUPPRESSIVE
Therapy that diminishes white blood cell count

MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION
A medical emergency occurring when a blood clot forms suddenly in a coronary artery, blocking blood flow to an area of the heart, also called a heart attack

MYOPATHY
A disease of muscular dysfunction, generally causing weakness and atrophy of muscles

NADIR
The lowest white blood cell count measured between chemotherapy treatments

NARCOLEPSY
Asleep disorder characterized by sudden and repeated attacks of sleep

NEBULIZER
A device used to deliver inhaled medications, using an air compressor to blow an atomized medication through a mouthpiece or mask

NEEDLE LOCALIZATION BIOPSY
Procedure where a needle marker is inserted to define an abnormal area prior to biopsy

NEPHRECTOMY
The surgical removal of the kidney

NEPHROTOMOGRAPHY
Conventional tomograms of the kidneys, particularly in small sections of the kidneys

NEUROFIBROMATOSIS
A genetic disorder causing skin lesions, cutaneous and subcutaneous tumors, and tumors on internal organs

NEURONS
The nerve cells of the brain responsible for neurological function

NEUROPATHY
A condition resulting from damage to the peripheral nerves, resulting in weakness, sensory loss and pain in the extremities

NEUTROPENIA
Indicating a low level of neutrophils in the blood

NEUTROPENIC FEVERS
A fever associated with low white blood cell count and low granulocyte count

NEUTROPHIL
The body’s most abundant type of white blood cell, or leukocyte, which is active in immune responses and inflammatory reactions

NEVUS
A congenital skin lesion, also called a mole or birthmark

NODULE
An elevated, solid mass or lump that can be located in the epidermis, dermis, or the subcutaneous fat

NONINVASIVE PROCEDURE
Medical examination or procedure that does not penetrate the skin or invade the body, with the exception of minor needle sticks

NONSTEROIDAL ANTI-INFLAMMATORY DRUGS (NSAIDS)
Medications that act against inflammation, reduce fever, relieve muscle pain, and prevent blood clots

NORMAL PRESSURE HYDROCEPHALUS (NPH)
An increase in pressure within the ventricles of the brain, often causing dementia, gait difficulties, and urinary incontinence

NYSTAGMUS
A jerking movement of the eyes associated with a neurological disorder

OCCLUSION
Meaning “closure”.

ONCOLOGIST
Physician specializing in cancer treatment(s)

ONYCHOMYCOSIS
A fungal infection of the fingernails or toenails resulting in thickened, discolored, brittle nails

OPEN NEPHROLITHOTOMY
The surgical excision of kidney stones from the back or abdomen whereby the kidney may be opened

ORCHIECTOMY
The surgical removal of one or both of the testicles

ORCHITIS
An inflammation of the testicle

OSTEOARTHRITIS
The deterioration of cartilage in the joints

OSTEOMYELITIS
An infection in a bone

OVERACTIVE BLADDER
A condition marked by involuntary, uncontrollable bladder muscle contractions during bladder filling

OVERALL SURVIVAL
The percentage of disease survivors, both disease and free of disease, after a specified period of time

OVERFLOW UI
The leakage of small amounts of urine from a bladder that is always full

PACEMAKER
A battery-powered implanted device that electrically stimulates the heart to contract and pump blood throughout the body

PALLIATION
The process of relieving symptoms and maintaining comfort through either the use of surgery, radiation, or chemotherapy

PALLIATIVE
Anything that helps manage symptoms of, but does not cure, a disease

PAPULE
A small elevated skin lesion that is pointed, flat topped, dome shaped, smooth, or eroded

PARANEOPLASTIC
Disorders that occur due to the remote effects of cancer

PARESTHESIAS
Unusual sensory symptoms including tingling and numbness

PARKINSON’S DISEASE
A condition whereby cells that produce dopamine degenerate, causing tremors, muscle stiffness, and loss of motor function

PATHOLOGY
Medical field concerned with examination of tissues removed for the purposes of diagnosis and guiding patient care

PEAK EXPIRATORY FLOW
Ameasurement of the ability to blow air out of the lungs used to diagnose asthma

PELVIC MUSCLE EXERCISES
Exercises intended to improve pelvic muscle tone to prevent leakage caused by incontinence

PERCUTANEOUS NEPHROLITHOTOMY (PCN)
The manual extraction of kidney stones

PERICARDIAL EFFUSION
The accumulation of fluid between the pericardium and the heart

PERICARDIOCENTESIS
A surgical puncture of the pericardial space in effort to drain fluid

PERICARDITIS
An inflammation of the tissues of the pericardium

PERICARDIUM
The thin membranous covering of the outer surfaces of the heart

PERINEAL PROSTATECTOMY
Surgicalprocedure to remove the prostate using a perineal incision

PERIPHERAL NERVES
Nerves outside of the brain and spinal cord

PERIPHERAL NERVOUS SYSTEM
The peripheral nerves and muscular structures

PERIURETHRAL BULKING INJECTIONS
Surgical procedure in which injected implants are used to build up the area around the neck of the bladder, to prevent leakage

PES CAVUS
Medical term for highly arched feet

PES PLANUS
Medical term for flat feet

PHALANX
The small bones of the foot that make up the toes

PHLEBOLITHS
Small stones, or calcium deposits that form within veins and cause congestion

PHLEBOTOMY
An incision or needle puncture of a vein in order to draw blood

PHOTOPHOBIA
A visual aversion to light, as commonly experienced with migraine headache

PLANTAR FASCIA
A band of connective tissue that anchors the calcaneus to the front of the foot to support the arch

PLANTAR FASCIITIS
An inflammation of the plantar fascia, commonly with or caused by a heel spur

PLANTAR WARTS
Warts that occur on the bottom or plantar surface of the foot

PLANTAR WARTS
Warts that occur on the bottom or plantar surface of the foot

PLANTARFLEX
Any downward motion of a body part

PLATELETS
Coagulating blood cells

POLYPS
Small outgrowths of tissue from the linings of various tubular organs

POLYSOMNOGRAPHY
A sleep study, in which numerous physiological monitors are attached to record breathing, brain activity, and physical activity

PORCINE VALVE
A valve made of tissue from a pig used to replace a diseased heart valve

POSITIVE AIRWAY PRESSURE
A technique for treating obstructive sleep apnea in which forced air is pumped into the nose and mouth, keeping the airway open during sleep

POST-VOID RESIDUAL VOLUME
A diagnostic test measuring how much urine remains in the bladder after urination

PRIMARY CARE PHYSICIAN (PCP)
The large subset of physicians who do not provide specialized care, including general practitioners

PROPHYLACTIC
Preventative medications or treatments

PROSTATE
The muscular, walnut-sized gland that surrounds part of the urethra and secretes seminal fluid

PROSTATECTOMY
The surgical removal of the prostate

PROSTATIC STENT
A wire device that expands after placement, pushing prostate tissue away from passageway resulting in easier urination

PROSTATITIS
An inflammation of the prostate

PROSTATRON/TRANSURETHRAL MICROWAVE THERMOTHERAPY (TUMT)
Microwave treatment used to open passageways, allowing for easier urination

PUBOVAGINAL SLING
A surgical procedure where tissue or synthetic material is placed under the bladder neck to support and immobilize it to improve sphincter function and continence

PULMONARY EMBOLUS
A blockage in the lung caused by a blood clot

PYELONEPHRITIS
An inflammation of the kidney, generally due to a bacterial infection

PYURIA
The presence of pus in the urine, typically indicating a kidney infection or urinary tract infection

RADICAL RETROPUBIC PROSTATECTOMY
Complete removal of the entire prostate through an abdominal incision that allows the surgeon to spare nerve tissue and analyze lymph nodes

RECTOCELE
Abnormal herniation of the rectum into the vagina

RESPIRATORY SYSTEM
A group of organs responsible for carrying oxygen from the air to the bloodstream, and simultaneously expelling carbon dioxide as a waste product

RESTLESS LEG SYNDROME (RLS)
A common neurological disorder resulting in pulling, tearing, and jerking sensations in the legs while at rest

RETROGRADE EJACULATION
The discharge of semen into the bladder rather than through the urethra and out of the body

RETROPUBIC PROSTATECTOMY
A surgical procedure using an abdominal incision to remove obstructing tissue

SEIZURE
An abnormal electrical discharge of brain cells resulting in a transient disturbance in brain function

SEROTONIN
An important neurotransmitter involved in pain sensation and emotional perceptions

SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASE (STD)
An infection spread through sexual intercourse genital contact or the exchange of bodily fluids

SLING PROCEDURES
Surgical methods for treating urinary incontinence involving the placement of a sling

SMALL BOWEL
14-foot section of the gastrointestinal tract which empties into the beginning of the large bowel

SPHINCTER
The ring of muscle fibers located around an opening in the body that regulates the passage of substances through the opening

STRESS URINARY INCONTINENCE
The involuntary loss of urine during periods of increased abdominal pressure, such as when laughing, sneezing, coughing, or lifting

SUPRAPUBIC PROSTATECTOMY
Incising of the bladder to remove obstructing prostatic tissue through a suprapubic incision below the nave

SUPRAPUBIC PROSTATECTOMY
Incising of the bladder to remove obstructing prostatic tissue through a suprapubic incision below the nave

TESTOSTERONE
The sex hormone that stimulates development of male sex characteristics and bone and muscle growth; produced by the testicles and in small amounts, by the ov

THROMBOCYTOPENIA
A decreased number of platelets in the blood

THYROID STIMULATING HORMONE (TSH)
A hormone that stimulates hormonal secretion of the thyroid gland

TINNITUS
A ringing in the ears

TRANSIENT URINARY INCONTINENCE
Includes temporary episodes of urinary incontinence that are alleviated after the cause of the episode is identified and treated, such as a bladder infection

TRANSURETHRAL NEEDLE ABLATION (TUNA)
The destruction of prostate tissue with thermal energy that is passed through a needle

TRANSURETHRAL RESECTION OF THE PROSTATE (TURP)
A common treatment for benign prostate hypertrophy, wherein the inside of the prostate (urethra) is cored out to make the passage of urine easier

TUMOR
An abnormal mass of tissue resulting from excessive cell division

ULTRASONIC LITHOTRIPSY
The use of high-frequency ultrasound waves to destroy kidney stones gradually, so they can then be passed naturally by the patient or removed by grasping forceps

UNDERACTIVE BLADDER
Inadequate contraction of the bladder that prevents the bladder from emptying normally

URETEROSCOPY
A flexible, fiber optic instrument that is inserted through the urethra and bladder up to the ureter for observation and often for retrieval of kidney stones

URGE UI
The involuntary loss of urine associated with a sudden and strong urge to void

URINALYSIS
A group of physical and chemical tests done on a urine sample to check for various disorders, including those of the kidneys and urinary tract

URINARY INCONTINENCE (UI)
The involuntary loss of urine sufficient enough to be disruptive

URINARY TRACT INFECTIONS (UTIS)
Infections caused by bacteria that invade the urinary system, multiplying and leading to infection

URODYNAMIC TESTS
Diagnostic tests used to examine the bladder and urethral sphincter functionality

VAPORTRODE
Specific type of cautery electrode that vaporizes prostatic tissue in order to expand the prostatic channel, making urination easier

VARICOCELE EMBOLIZATION
An outpatient procedure in which the varicocele is closed off by means of a balloon catheter, steel coil, and/or vessel-hardening solution

VARICOCELECTOMY
The cutting away of a varicocele

VAS DEFERENS
The tubes that connect the epididymes to the prostate gland

VASCULAR
Meaning “related to blood vessels

VASOEPIDIDYMOSTOMY
Microsurgery that removes blockage in the epididymis and reattaches the epididymis to the vas deferens

VASOVASOSTOMY
Medical reconnection of the severed ends of the vas deferens, which restores the flow of sperm through the vas deferens; also called a reverse vasectomy. Vasectomy reversal.