Hand Injuries Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Hand Injuries article.

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

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Acute: Of abrupt onset, in reference to a disease. Acute often also connotes an illness th...

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Adjacent: Lying nearby. Related terms include superjacent, subjacent, and circumjacent. Fr...

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Amputation: Removal of part or all of a body part that is enclosed by skin. Amputation can...

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Anesthesia: Loss of feeling or awareness, as when an anesthetic is administered before sur...

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Antibacterial: Anything that destroys bacteria or suppresses their growth or their ability...

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Artery: A vessel that carries blood high in oxygen content away from the heart to the far...

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

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

Burn treatment: The treatment of burns depends on the depth, area and location of the burn...

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Cardiac: Having to do with the heart.

Carpal tunnel syndrome: Compression and irritation of the median nerve as it passes under ...

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Cartilage: Firm, rubbery tissue that cushions bones at joints. A flexible kind of cartilag...

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Cast: 1) A protective shell of fiberglass, plastic, or plaster, and bandage that is molde...

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

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Circulation: In medicine, the movement of fluid through the body in a regular or circuitou...

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Cold injury: An injury caused by exposure to extreme cold that can lead to loss of body pa...

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Compartment syndrome: A condition in which there is swelling and an increase in pressure w...

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

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Compression: 1. The act of pressing together. As in a compression fracture, nerve c...

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Cuts: Severed skin. Washing a cut or scrape with soap and water and keeping it clean and d...

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Debridement: The act of debriding (removing dead, contaminated or adherent tissue or forei...

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Diabetes: Refers to diabetes mellitus or, less often, to diabetes insipidus. Diabetes mell...

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

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Digit: A finger or toe.

Distal: The more (or most) distant of two (or more) things. For example, the distal end of...

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

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

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Fracture: A break in bone or cartilage. Although usually a result of trauma, a fracture ca...

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Frostbite: Damage to tissues from freezing due to the formation of ice crystals within cel...

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

Gangrene: Tissue death due to loss of adequate blood supply. Sometimes bacteria invade suc...

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

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Incision: A cut through skin or other tissue performed by a health care professional.

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

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Irrigate: To wash out. For example, one can irrigate a wound to clean it.

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

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Knuckle: The top of the flexed finger joint.

Laceration: A cut.

Ligament: A tough band of connective tissue that connects various structures, such as two ...

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Medical history: 1. In clinical medicine, the patient's past and present which may ...

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Muscular: Having to do with the muscles. Also, endowed with above average muscle developme...

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Nail: In medicine, there are two types of nails. One is just a plain old metal nail used t...

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Nerve: A bundle of fibers that uses electrical and chemical signals to transmit sensory an...

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Numb: Numb, or numbness is a loss of the sensation of feeling in an area of the body. Numb...

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Ointment: An oil-based preparation that is applied to the skin. Whereas an ointment has an...

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Open fracture: A fracture in which the bone is sticking through the skin. Also called a co...

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Operating room: A facility that is equipped for performing surgery. Abbreviated OR.

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

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Orthopedist: An orthopedic surgeon, a physician who corrects congenital or functional abno...

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

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Poison: Any substance that can cause severe organ damage or death if ingested, breathed in...

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Poison control center: A special information center set up to inform people about how to r...

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Primary care: A patient's main source for regular medical care, ideally providing continui...

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

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Psychiatric: Pertaining to or within the purview of psychiatry, the medical specialty conc...

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

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Range of motion: The full movement potential of a joint, usually its range of flexion and ...

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

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Replantation: 1. Literally, the act of planting again. 2. In surgery, the re...

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Rule out: Term used in medicine, meaning to eliminate or exclude something from considera...

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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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Saline: Relating to salt. As an adjective, "saline" means "salty, containing salt." As a n...

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

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

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Superficial: In anatomy, on the surface or shallow. As opposed to deep. The skin is superf...

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Surgeon: A physician who treats disease, injury, or deformity via operative or manual meth...

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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.

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

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Tear: A drop of the salty secretion of the lacrimal glands which serves to moisten the con...

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Tendon: The soft tissue by which muscle attaches to bone. Tendons are somewhat flexible, b...

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

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Trauma: A physical or emotional injury.

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

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Ventilation: The exchange of air between the lungs and the atmosphere so that oxygen can ...

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Wrist: The part of the hand that is nearest the forearm and consists of the carpal bones a...

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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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Medical Dictionary