Scuba Diving: Barotrauma and Decompression Sickness Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Scuba Diving: Barotrauma and Decompression Sickness article.

Abdominal: Relating to the abdomen, the belly, that part of the body that contains all of ...

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Acetaminophen: A nonaspirin pain reliever or analgesic. Acetaminophen may be given alone t...

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Anus: The opening of the rectum to the outside of the body.

Audiologist: A health care professional who is trained to evaluate hearing loss and relate...

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Barotrauma: Trauma caused by rapid or extreme changes in air pressure, especially affectin...

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Belching: A normal process of releasing through the mouth air that accumulates in the stom...

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Bladder: A hollow organ in the lower abdomen that stores urine. The kidneys filter waste f...

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Blindness: Loss of useful sight. Blindness can be temporary or permanent. Damage to any p...

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Blood pressure: The blood pressure is the pressure of the blood within the arteries. It is...

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Brain: The portion of the central nervous system that is located within the skull. It func...

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Breathing: The process of respiration, during which air is inhaled into the lungs through ...

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Catheter: A thin, flexible tube.

Cavities: Holes or structural damage in the two outer layers of a tooth called the enamel...

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Chest: The area of the body located between the neck and the abdomen. The chest contains t...

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Chest pain: Pain in the chest that can be a result of many things, including angina, heart...

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Circulatory: Having to do with circulation, the movement of fluid in a regular or circuito...

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Circulatory system: The system that moves blood throughout the body. The circulatory syste...

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Collapsed lung: Failure of full expansion of a once fully expanded lung. Medically cal...

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Complication: In medicine, an unanticipated problem that arises following, and is a result...

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Congestion: An abnormal or excessive accumulation of a body fluid. The term is used broadl...

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Cough: A rapid expulsion of air from the lungs, typically in order to clear the lung airwa...

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CT scan: Computerized tomography scan. Pictures of structures within the body created by a...

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Deafness: Partial or complete hearing loss. Levels of hearing impairment vary from a mild ...

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Decompression: 1. In general, the removal of pressure.
2. In surgery, ...

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Diagnosis: 1 The nature of a disease; the identification of an illness. 2 A ...

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Dizziness: Painless head discomfort with many possible causes including disturbances of ...

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Ear: The hearing organ. There are three sections of the ear, according to the anatomy tex...

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Eardrum: The tympanic membrane of the ear, or tympanum. The eardrum separates the middle e...

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ECG: Electrocardiogram.

Electrocardiogram: A recording of the electrical activity of the heart. Abbreviated ECG an...

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Embolism: The obstruction of a blood vessel by a foreign substance or a blood clot that tr...

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Emergency department: The department of a hospital responsible for the provision of medica...

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Eustachian tube: The tube that runs from the middle ear to the pharynx. The function of th...

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External ear: There are three sections of the ear. They are the external ear, the middle ...

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Flatulence: Excess gas in the intestinal tract. But excess flatulence is difficult to defi...

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Flutter: Flutter is a rapid vibration or pulsation. The difference between flutter and fib...

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Frontal: In anatomy, pertaining to the forehead. As, for example, the frontal bone, fronta...

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Gastric: Having to do with the stomach.

Heart: The muscle that pumps blood received from veins into arteries throughout the body. ...

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Heart attack: The death of heart muscle due to the loss of blood supply. The loss of bloo...

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Hoarseness: Hoarseness is a term referring to abnormal voice changes. Hoarseness may be ma...

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Hyperbaric: Pertaining to gas pressures greater than 1 atmosphere* of pressure. Also perta...

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Ibuprofen: A nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that is commonly used to treat pa...

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Infection: The invasion and multiplication of microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses, an...

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Injury: Harm or hurt. To harm, hurt, or wound. The word injure may be in physical or emot...

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Inner ear: A highly complex structure whose essential component for hearing is the membran...

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Itching: An uncomfortable sensation in the skin that feels as if something is crawling on ...

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Joint: The area where two bones are attached for the purpose of permitting body parts to m...

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Life support: 1. A therapy or device designed to preserve someone's life when an es...

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Lungs: The lungs are a pair of breathing organs located with the chest which remove carbon...

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Lymphatic: Pertaining to a small, thin channel that is similar to a blood vessel and that ...

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Membrane: A very thin layer of tissue that covers a 'surface.

Middle ear: A part of the ear that consists of the eardrum (tympanic membrane) and, beyond...

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Mouth: 1. The upper opening of the digestive tract, beginning with the lips and con...

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MRI: Magnetic resonance imaging.

Nasal: Having to do with the nose.

Nasal polyps: Benign growths that originate in the mucous membranes lining the nasal passa...

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Nausea: Stomach queasiness, the urge to vomit. Nausea can be brought on by many causes, in...

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Neck: The part of the body joining the head to the shoulders. Also, any narrow or constric...

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Neurological: Having to do with the nerves or the nervous system as, for example, a neurol...

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Nitrogen: Element number 7, a colorless, odorless, tasteless gas that is biologically impo...

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Nose: The external midline projection from the face. The purpose of the nose is to warm, c...

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Obstruction: Blockage of a passageway. See, for example: Airway obstruction; Intestinal o...

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Onset: In medicine, the first appearance of the signs or symptoms of an illness as, for ex...

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Otolaryngologist: A physician specialized in diagnosing and treating diseases of the head ...

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Oxygen: The odorless gas that is present in the air and necessary to maintain life. Oxygen...

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Pain: An unpleasant sensation that can range from mild, localized discomfort to agony. Pa...

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Panic: A sudden strong feeling of fear that prevents reasonable thought or action. The wor...

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Paralysis: Loss of voluntary movement (motor function). Paralysis that affects only one mu...

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Pneumothorax: Free air in the chest outside the lung. Pneumothorax can occur spontaneously...

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Pulmonary: Having to do with the lungs.

Pulmonary barotrauma: Damage to the lung from rapid or excessive pressure changes, as may ...

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Pulse: The rhythmic dilation of an artery that results from beating of the heart. Pulse is...

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Recurrence: The return of a sign, symptom, or disease after a remission. The reappearance ...

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Referral: The recommendation of a medical or paramedical professional. If you get a refer...

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Respiratory: Having to do with respiration.

Risk of recurrence: The chance that a disease will strike again. In medical genetics, the ...

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Rupture: A break or tear in any organ (such as the spleen) or soft tissue (such as the ach...

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Scan: As a noun, the data or image obtained from the examination of organs or regions of...

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Sensory: Relating to sensation, to the perception of a stimulus, to the voyage made by inc...

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Shortness of breath: Difficulty in breathing. Medically referred to as dyspnea. Shortness ...

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Sinus: 1. An air-filled cavity in a dense portion of a skull bone. The sinuses decr...

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Sinusitis: Inflammation of the lining membrane in any of the hollow areas (sinuses) of the...

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Stroke: The sudden death of brain cells due to lack of oxygen, caused by blockage of blood...

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Surgery: The branch of medicine that employs operations in the treatment of disease or inj...

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Syndrome: A combination of symptoms and signs that together represent a disease process.

Therapy: The treatment of disease. Therapy is synonymous with treatment.

Throat: The throat is the anterior (front) portion of the neck beginning at the back of th...

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Tooth: One of the structures within the mouth that allow for biting and chewing. Teeth hav...

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Trigger: Something that either sets off a disease in people who are genetically predispose...

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Tylenol: See: Acetaminophen.

Tympanic: 1. Pertaining to the tympanum (the eardrum).
2. Pertaining t...

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Tympanic membrane: The eardrum, a thin membrane that serves as a partition between the ext...

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Upper respiratory infection: An infection of the upper part of the respiratory system whic...

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Valsalva: 1. The Valsalva maneuver in which a person tries to exhale forcibly with ...

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Valsalva maneuver: A maneuver in which one tries with force to exhale with the windpipe cl...

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Vertical: In anatomy, upright. As opposed to horizontal.

Vital: Necessary to maintain life. For example, breathing is a vital function.

X-ray: High-energy radiation with waves shorter than those of visible light. X-ray is used...

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Yawning: Involuntary opening of the mouth with respiration, breathing first inward, then o...

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Medical Dictionary