Glossary Index by Letter

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A ballooning out of the wall of an artery, which in time can leak blood or rupture, causing massive bleeding. An aneurysm is an abnormal bulge or "ballooning" in the wall of an artery. Arteries are blood vessels that carry oxygen-rich blood from the heart to other...


X-ray imaging of the heart and great vessels made visible by injection of a radio-opaque solution. Diagnostic imaging method that shows the blood flow through the heart and primary vessels. It is used to evaluate patients for cardiovascular surgery. A contrast medium...


The growth of new blood vessels from surrounding tissue into growing tissue. Angiogenesis is the formation of new blood vessels. Angiogenesis is a process controlled by certain chemicals produced in the body. Some of these chemicals stimulate cells to repair damaged...


A diagnostic procedure done in the x-ray department to visualize blood vessels. An angiogram is a procedure that introduces a contrast medium and Xrays to show the blood flow through the heart and primary vessels (such as the aorta or vena cava). An angiogram is used...


Relating to or utilizing angiography. Angiography is a test used to detect blockages of the arteries or veins. A cerebral angiogram can detect the degree of narrowing or obstruction of an artery or blood vessel in the brain, head, or neck. It is used to diagnose...


Radiography of vessels after the injection of a radiopaque contrast material. Unlike angioplasty, which is an invasive procedure, angiography breaks the skin only for the insertion of a needle for administering a radiopaque catheter and positioning under fluoroscopic...


Reconstitution or reopening of a blood vessel. May involve balloon dilation, mechanical stripping of the inside of the blood vessel, forceful injection of an elastic filamentous protein, or placement of a stent.


An eating disorder characterized by loss of appetite or total aversion to food. Anorexia nervosa is characterized by a distortion of body image and intense fear of gaining weight, causing emaciation and a lack of menstruation among girls and women, and extreme eating...


Absence of the sense of smell. Symptom common to tumors of the frontal lobe of the cerebral hemispheres.


Pertaining to being in front of another structure - toward the front of the body. Anterior pituitary: The front portion of the pituitary, a small gland in the head called the master gland. Hormones secreted by the anterior pituitary influence growth, sexual...

Anterior Pituitary

The front portion of the pituitary. Produces a number of hormones that affect other tissues and glands including ACTH, GH, LH, FSH, Prolactin, TSH.


Part of the immune system, antibodies are proteins produced by white blood cells that circulate in the blood looking for and attaching to foreign proteins and toxins to neutralize them. Antibodies are a type of protein made by plasma cells (a type of white blood cell)...


Used to prevent the formation of blood clots. A drug that helps prevent blood clots from forming; externally administered agents that prevent blood clotting. Also called blood thinner.

Anticoagulant Therapy

Anticoagulant drugs administered in a theraputic manner. The use of anticoagulant drugs to reduce or prevent intravascular or intracardiac clotting.


Antigens are capable of causing the production of antibodies and may or may not have an allergic reaction. An Antigen is a substance that causes the immune system to make a specific immune response. An antigen may be a foreign substance from the environment such as...


Adult onset: occurring in adulthood. Adult onset as in patients with growth hormone deficiency occurring in adulthood. Also referring to adult onset diseases such as type 2 diabetes.


The absence of breathing. Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder characterized by brief interruptions of breathing during sleep. Episodes usually last 10 seconds or more and occur repeatedly throughout the night. People with sleep apnea will partially awaken as they...


Abnormal heart rhythms; dysrhythmias. An arrhythmia is a problem with the speed or rhythm of the heartbeat. During an arrhythmia, the heart can beat too fast, too slow, or with an irregular rhythm. A heartbeat that is too fast is called tachycardia. A heartbeat that...


Hardening of the arteries; types generally recognized are: atherosclerosis, Mönckeberg's arteriosclerosis, and arteriolosclerosis. Atherosclerosis is a disease in which plaque builds up on the insides of the arteries. Arteries are blood vessels that carry oxygen-rich...


A vessel that carries blood from the heart to the to other areas of the body. Arteries that carry blood to the brain are the carotid arteries—one on each side of the neck—that divide into internal and external carotid arteries. The internal carotid arteries supply...

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