Hearing Loss Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Hearing Loss article.

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

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Acoustic: Having to do with sound or hearing. The acoustic nerve (the 8th cranial nerve) i...

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Acoustic neuroma: A benign tumor that may develop on the hearing and balance nerves near t...

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Aging: The process of becoming older, a process that is genetically determined and environ...

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Anatomy: The study of human or animal form, by observation or examination of the living be...

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Antibiotic: A drug used to treat infections caused by bacteria and other microorganisms. ...

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Antihistamines: Drugs that combat the histamine released during an allergic reaction by bl...

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

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

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Bilateral: Affecting both sides. For example, bilateral arthritis affects joints on both t...

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Blast: An immature blood cell.

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

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

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

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

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Cochlea: The cochlea is the part of the inner ear that converts mechanical energy (vibrati...

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Cochlear: Pertaining to the cochlea, the organ of hearing.

Cochlear implant: A device that is surgically placed (implanted) within the inner ear to h...

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

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Drain: A device for removing fluid from a cavity or wound. A drain is typically a tube or ...

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

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Ear tubes: Formally known as tympanostomy tubes, ear tubes are small tubes, made of severa...

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Earache: Pain in the ear. This can occur because of conditions within the ear itself, the ...

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

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Effusion: Too much fluid, an outpouring of fluid. For example, a pleural effusion is an ab...

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

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ENT: 1. Abbreviation for ears, nose and throat. A field of medicine also called ot...

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

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

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Forceps: An instrument that has two blades and a handle and is used for handling, grasping...

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

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Graft: Healthy skin, bone, kidney, liver, or other tissue that is taken from one part of t...

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Hematoma: A localized swelling that is filled with blood caused by a break in the wall of ...

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

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Herpes zoster: Also called shingles, zona, and zoster. The culprit is the varicella-zoster...

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

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Implant: 1. To embed; to set in firmly. In embryology, the fertilized egg implants ...

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Incus: One of the three tiny bones in the middle ear. Sound impulses coming from the eardr...

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

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

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Influenza: The flu is caused by viruses that infect the respiratory tract which are divide...

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

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Leukemia: Cancer of the blood cells. Strictly speaking, leukemia should refer only to canc...

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Malleus: A tiny bone in the middle ear that is shaped like a minute mallet.

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

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

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

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

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Mononucleosis: Infection with the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV, human herpesvirus 4, HHV-4) in...

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Motion sickness: A disorder of the sense of balance and equilibrium and, hence, the sense ...

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

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Nasopharynx: The area of the upper throat that lies behind the nose. In contrast to the or...

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

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

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Neuroma: A benign tumor that arises from a nerve as, for example, an acoustic glioma or op...

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Neurosurgeon: A physician who specializes in surgery on the brain and other parts of the n...

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Nicotinic acid: Deficiency of nicotinic acid (also known as niacin), one of the B-complex ...

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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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Ossicle: Any small bone, such as the tiny bones within the human ear.

Otitis: Inflammation of the ear. Depending upon which part of the ear is inflammed, there ...

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Otitis externa: Infection of the skin covering the outer ear canal that leads in to the ea...

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Otitis media: Inflammation of the middle ear characterized by the accumulation of infected...

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

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Otoscope: An instrument for looking in the ear.

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

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Palate: The roof of the mouth. The front portion is bony (hard palate), and the back porti...

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Pediatrics: The field of medicine that is concerned with the health of infants, children, ...

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Pharmacy: A location where prescription medications are sold. A pharmacy is constantly sup...

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Polycythemia: Too many red blood cells. The opposite of anemia. polycythemia formally exis...

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Presbycusis: Age-related hearing loss with gradually progressive inability to hear, especi...

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

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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.

Ringing in the ears: Medically called tinnitus, can be due to many causes including ear in...

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

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Sickle cell disease: A genetic blood disorder caused by the presence of an abnormal form ...

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Skin graft: Skin used to cover an area where the patient's skin has been lost due to a bur...

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Skull: The skull is a collection of bones which encase the brain and give form to the hea...

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Soft palate: The muscular part of the roof of the mouth. The soft palate is directly behin...

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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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Stapes: A stirrup-shaped bone in the middle ear. The stapes transmits sound vibrations fro...

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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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Syphilis: A sexually transmitted disease caused by Treponema pallidum, a microscopic orga...

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Temporal: 1. Pertaining to time, limited in time, temporary, or transient.
...

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Temporal bone: A large irregular bone that is situated at the base and side of the skull. ...

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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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Tinnitus: Ringing in the ears. Tinnitus has many causes, including some medications (inclu...

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Trauma: A physical or emotional injury.

Tubes: The "tubes" are medically known as the Fallopian tubes. There are two Fallopian tub...

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

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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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Tympanometry: A test that measures the function of the middle ear. Tympanometry works by v...

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Unilateral: Having, or relating to, one side. For example, a unilateral rash is one that i...

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

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Vertigo: Aside from being the name of a classic 1958 Alfred Hitchcock film (with Jimmy St...

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Medical Dictionary