Fever (in Adults) Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Fever (in Adults) article.

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

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Abdominal pain: Pain in the belly. Abdominal pain can be acute or chronic. It may reflect ...

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Abscess: A local accumulation of pus anywhere in the body. The following are some example...

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

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Allergy: A misguided reaction to foreign substances by the immune system, the body system ...

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Analysis: In psychology, a term for conversation-based therapeutic processes used to gain ...

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Antibiotic: A drug used to treat bacterial infections. Antibiotics have no effect on viral...

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Antifungal: A medication that limits or prevents the growth of yeasts and other fungal org...

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Antifungal medication: A drug used to treat fungal infections.

Antiviral: An agent that kills a virus or that suppresses its ability to replicate and, he...

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Appendix: A small outpouching from the beginning of the large intestine.

Arthritis: Inflammation of a joint. When joints are inflamed they can develop stiffness, w...

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Aspirin: Once the Bayer trademark for acetylsalicylic acid, now the common name for this a...

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Autoimmune: Pertaining to autoimmunity, a misdirected immune response that occurs when the...

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Axilla: Armpit.

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Back pain: Pain felt in the low or upper back. Causes of pain in the low and upper back in...

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Bacteria: Single-celled microorganisms that can exist either as independent (free-living) ...

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Bacterial: Of or pertaining to bacteria, as in a bacterial lung infection.

Baseline: Information or data gathered at the beginning of a period from which variations ...

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Biopsy: The removal of a sample of tissue for examination under a microscope to check for ...

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

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Blood clot: A mass of coagulated blood. A blood clot can block a major blood vessel, causi...

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Blood culture: A test designed to detect if microorganisms such as bacteria and fungi are ...

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Blood in the urine: Blood that appears in the urine. Also known as hematuria. Gross hematu...

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Blood-thinner: A common name for an anticoagulant agent used to prevent the formation of b...

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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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Bronchitis: Inflammation and swelling of the bronchi. Bronchitis can be acute or chronic.

Calf: The belly or fleshy hind part of the back of the leg below the knee. The calf is mad...

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Cancer: An abnormal growth of cells which tend to proliferate in an uncontrolled way and, ...

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Cat scratch fever: An infection caused by the Bartonella henslae bacteria. Almost half of ...

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CDC: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the US agency charged with tracking a...

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Cell: The basic structural and functional unit of any living thing. Each cell is a small c...

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Cellulitis: A spreading bacterial infection underneath the skin surface characterized by r...

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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: The US agency charged with tracking and invest...

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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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Chills: feelings of coldness accompanied by shivering. Chills may develop after exposure t...

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Chronic: In medicine, lasting a long time. A chronic condition is one that lasts 3 months ...

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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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Collagen: The principal protein of the skin, tendons, cartilage, bone, and connective tiss...

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Coma: A state of deep, unarousable unconsciousness. A coma may occur as a result of head t...

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

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Constipation: Infrequent and frequently incomplete bowel movements. Constipation is the op...

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Contagious: capable of being transmitted from one human to another human via direct or ind...

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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: Computed tomography scan. Detailed images of internal organs are obtained by this...

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Cytokine: A small protein released by cells that has a specific effect on the interactions...

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Dehydration: Excessive loss of body water. Diseases of the gastrointestinal tract that cau...

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Desquamation: The shedding of the outer layers of the skin. For example, when the rash of ...

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Diabetes: Usually refers to diabetes mellitus or, less often, to diabetes insipidus. Diabe...

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

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Diarrhea: A common condition that involves unusually frequent and liquid bowel movements. ...

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Digestive system: The system of organs responsible for getting food into and out of the bo...

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Dilating: The widening and opening of an opening, such as the cervix or esophagus. For exa...

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Diphtheria: An acute infectious upper respiratory tract disease that affects the throat. I...

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Discharge: 1.The flow of fluid from part of the body, such as from the nose or vag...

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

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Echocardiography: Echocardiography is a diagnostic test which uses ultrasound waves to mak...

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Effective dose: The dose of a drug that will achieve the desired effect.

Embolus: A blockage or plug that obstructs a blood 'vessel. Examples of emboli are detache...

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

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Endocarditis: an inflammation of one or more of the heart valves and lining tissues of the...

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Endocrine: Pertaining to hormones and the glands that make and secrete them into the blood...

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Endogenous: Inside. For example, endogenous cholesterol is cholesterol that is made inside...

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Endoscopy: Examination of the inside of the body by using a lighted, flexible instrument c...

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Exogenous: Originating from outside the organism. Insulin taken by a diabetic is exogenous...

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Fahrenheit: Thermometer scale in which the freezing point of water is 32°F and the boiling...

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Febrile: Feverish.

Feedback: In order to maintain a stable internal environment, or homeostasis, the body use...

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Fever: Although a fever technically is any body temperature above the normal of 98.6 F (37...

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Fever of unknown origin: The presence of fever greater than 38.3'C (101'F) 'off and on' fo...

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Flu: Flu is a colloquialism for influenza. The flu is an acute respiratory illness caused ...

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Fungal: Pertaining to a fungus. For example, a fungal skin infection.

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Fungi: Plural of fungus.

Gallbladder: A pear-shaped organ located below the liver that stores the bile secreted by ...

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Gastrointestinal: Adjective referring collectively to the stomach and small and large inte...

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Headache: A pain in the head with the pain being above the eyes or the ears, behind the he...

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

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Heartburn: An uncomfortable feeling of burning and warmth occurring in waves rising up be...

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Heat exhaustion: A warning that the body is getting too hot. The person may be thirsty, gi...

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Heat stroke: A core body temperature that rises above 104 F (40 C) accompanied by hot, dr...

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Hepatitis: Inflammation of the liver, irrespective of the cause. Hepatitis is caused by a ...

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Hepatitis A: Inflammation of the liver caused by the hepatitis A virus (HAV). HAV is usual...

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Herpes: A family of viruses. Herpes also refers to infection with one of the human herpesv...

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HIV: Acronym for the Human Immunodeficiency Virus, the cause of AIDS (acquired immunodefi...

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

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Hormone: A chemical substance produced in the body that controls and regulates the activit...

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Hyperthermia: Overheating of the body, possibly due to extreme weather conditions. Unrelie...

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Hypothalamus: The area of the brain that secretes substances that influence pituitary and ...

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

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Immune: Protected against infection, usually by the presence of antibodies.

Immune response: Any reaction by the immune system. For example, poison ivy can cause an i...

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Immune system: A complex system that is responsible for distinguishing a person from every...

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Immunization: Vaccination. Immunizations work by stimulating the immune system, the natur...

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Immunosuppressive: 1. Pertaining to immunosuppression, the suppression of the immun...

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Indicate: In medicine, to make a treatment or procedure advisable because of a particular ...

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Indication: 1. In medicine, a condition which makes a particular treatment or proce...

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Infant: A young baby, from birth to 12 months of age.

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

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Inflammation: A localized reaction that produces redness, warmth, swelling, and pain as a ...

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Influenza: Influenza is an acute respiratory illness caused by influenza A or B viruses Mo...

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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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Inpatient: A patient whose care requires a stay in a hospital. As opposed to an outpatient...

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Interleukins: Substances used in biological therapy. Interleukins stimulate the growth and...

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Intervention: The act of intervening, interfering or interceding with the intent of modify...

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Iodine: An element in the diet that is essential for the manufacture of hormones by the th...

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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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Kidney: One of a pair of organs located in the right and left side of the abdomen. The kid...

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Lassa fever: An acute viral infection found in the tropics, especially in West Africa. Las...

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Leg: In popular usage, the part of the body from the top of the thigh down to the foot, an...

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Liver: The largest solid organ in the body, situated in the upper part of the abdomen on t...

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Liver disease: Liver disease refers to any disorder of the liver. The liver is a large org...

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Lumbar: Referring to the five lumbar vertebrae, the disks below them, and the correspondin...

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Lumbar puncture: A procedure in which cerebrospinal fluid is removed from the spinal canal...

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

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Lupus: A chronic inflammatory disease that is caused by autoimmunity. Patients with lupus ...

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Lyme disease: An inflammatory disease that is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi...

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Malaria: An infectious disease caused by protozoan parasites from the Plasmodium family th...

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Malnutrition: A term used to refer to any condition in which the body does not receive eno...

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Measles: An acute and highly contagious viral disease characterized by fever, runny nose,...

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Meningitis: Inflammation of the meninges, the three membranes that envelop the brain and t...

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Metabolism: The whole range of biochemical processes that occur within a living organism. ...

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

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Mucus: A thick fluid that is produced by the lining of some organs of the body.

Mumps: An acute (sudden, shortlived) viral illness that usually presents with inflammation...

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Muscle: Muscle is the tissue of the body which primarily functions as a source of power. T...

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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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Necrosis: The death of living cells or tissues. Necrosis can be due, for example, to ische...

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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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Occult: Hidden. For example, occult blood in the stool is hidden from the eye but can be d...

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Organ: A relatively independent part of the body that carries out one or more special func...

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

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Parasitic: Having to do with a parasite, as in a parasitic infection; or acting like a par...

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Pelvic: Having to do with the pelvis, the lower part of the abdomen, located between the h...

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Pelvic pain: : Pain perceived in the area of the pelvis, the lower part of the abdomen loc...

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Penis: The external male sex organ. The penis contains two chambers, the corpora cavernosa...

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Pneumonia: Inflammation of one or both lungs, with dense areas of lung inflammation. Pneum...

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Polio: Abbreviation for poliomyelitis, an acute and sometimes devastating disease caused ...

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Polyarteritis nodosa: An autoimmune disease that is characterized by spontaneous inflammat...

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Pregnant: The state of carrying a developing fetus within the body.

Probe: 1: In surgery, a probe is a slender flexible rod with a blunt end used to explore, ...

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Prognosis: The forecast of the probable outcome or course of a disease; the patient's chan...

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Pulmonary: Having to do with the lungs.

Pulmonary embolus: A blood clot or foreign material that has been carried through the bloo...

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Pus: A thick, whitish-yellow fluid that results from the accumulation of white blood cells...

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Rash: Breaking out (eruption) of the skin. A rash can be caused by an underlying medical c...

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Rectum: The last 6 to 8 inches of the large intestine. The rectum stores solid waste until...

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Recur: To occur again; to return. For example, a symptom, sign, or disease can recur.

Rehydrate: To restore lost water to the body tissues and fluids. Prompt rehydration is imp...

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Reproductive system: In women, the organs that are directly involved in producing eggs and...

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Respiratory: Having to do with respiration.

Respiratory system: The organs that are involved in breathing, including the nose, throat,...

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Rheumatic fever: An illness that occurs following a streptococcus infection (such as a "st...

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Rheumatoid arthritis: An autoimmune disease characterized by chronic inflammation of joint...

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Runny nose: The production of extra mucus by the nose. Rhinorrhea is the medical term for ...

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Sarcoidosis: A disease of unknown origin that causes small lumps (granulomas) due to chron...

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Scaling: Abnormal shedding or accumulation of an upper layer of skin (the stratum corneum)...

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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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Scarlatina: Also called scarlet fever, a disease caused by infection with group A streptoc...

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Scarlet fever: A skin condition that is due to a streptococcal sore throat or any other st...

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Sensation: In medicine and physiology, sensation refers to the registration of an incoming...

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Sepsis: The presence of bacteria (bacteremia), other infectious organisms, or toxins creat...

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Sore: 1. (adjective) A popular term for painful, such as a sore throat. 2. (...

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Sore throat: Pain in the throat. Sore throat may be caused by many different causes, inclu...

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Spinal cord: The major column of nerve tissue that is connected to the brain and lies with...

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Spinal tap: Also known as a lumbar puncture or "LP", a spinal tap is a procedure whereby ...

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Spleen: An organ that is located in the upper-left part of the abdomen, not far from the s...

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Sputum: Mucous material from the lungs that is produced (brought up) by coughing.

Steroid: One of a large group of chemical substances classified by a specific carbon struc...

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Stomach: The digestive organ that is located in the upper abdomen, under the ribs. The upp...

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Stool: The solid matter that is discharged in a bowel movement.

Strep: Very commonly used shortened form of Streptococcus, a very common and import...

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Strep throat: Strep throat is an infection caused by a type of bacteria called streptococc...

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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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Sweat: A colorless transparent acidic fluid with a distinctive odor secreted by the small ...

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Sweating: The act of secreting fluid from the skin by the sweat (sudoriferous) glands. The...

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Symptom: Any subjective evidence of disease. In contrast, a sign is objective. Blood comin...

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

Systemic: Affecting the entire body. A systemic disease such as diabetes can affect the wh...

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Tetanus: An often fatal infectious disease that is caused by the bacterium Clostridium tet...

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

Thermometer: A device used to measure the temperature of gaseous, liquid or solid matter o...

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Thermostat: A device that monitors temperature and automatically maintains it at certain l...

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

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Thyroid: 1. The thyroid gland. Also, pertaining to the thyroid gland. 2. A p...

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Thyroid hormones: Chemical substances made by the thyroid gland, which is located in the...

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Thyroid storm: Thyroid storm is a severe, life-threatening condition caused by an excess...

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Tick: A small wingless bloodsucking insect that, along with the mite, belongs to the order...

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Trauma: A physical or emotional injury.

Tumor: An abnormal mass of tissue. Tumors are a classic sign of inflammation, and can be ...

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Tumor necrosis factor: One of multiple proteins capable of inducing necrosis (death) of tu...

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Tylenol: See: Acetaminophen.

Typhoid: See: Typhoid fever.

Unconscious: 1. Interruption of awareness of oneself and one's surroundings, lack ...

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Urinary: Having to do with the function or anatomy of the kidneys, ureters, bladder, or ur...

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Urinary tract: The organs of the body that produce, store, and discharge urine. These orga...

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Urine: Liquid waste produced by the kidneys. Urine is a clear, transparent fluid that norm...

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Vaccines: Microbial preparations of killed or modified microorganisms that can stimulate a...

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Vagina: The muscular canal that extends from the cervix to the outside of the body. It is ...

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Vascular: Relating to blood vessels. For example, the vascular system in the body includes...

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Viral: Of or pertaining to a virus. For example, if a person has a viral rash, the rash wa...

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Viral infection: Infection caused by the presence of a virus in the body. Depending on th...

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Virus: A microorganism that is smaller than a bacterium that cannot grow or reproduce apar...

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Viruses: Small living particles that can infect cells and change how the cells function. I...

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

White blood cell: One of the cells the body makes to help fight infections. There are seve...

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White blood cell count (leukocyte count): The number of white blood cells (WBCs) in the b...

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

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Yellow fever: An acute systemic (bodywide) illness caused by a virus called a Flavivirus. ...

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Medical Dictionary