Hepatitis C Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Hepatitis C article.

Abdomen: The belly, that part of the body that contains all of the structures between the...

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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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Abnormal: Outside the expected norm, or uncharacteristic of a particular patient.

Acquired: Not inherited, or present at birth (congenital), but developing after birth. For...

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

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Antibody: An immunoglobulin, a specialized immune protein, produced because of the introdu...

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

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Ascites: An abnormal accumulation of fluid within the abdomen. There are many causes of as...

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

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

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

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Blood transfusion: The transfer of blood or blood components from one person (the donor) i...

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Bowel: The small and large intestine.

Breastfeeding: Feeding a child human breast milk. According to the American Academy of Ped...

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

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Carcinoma: Cancer that begins in the skin or in tissues that line or cover body organs. Ex...

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

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Chemotherapy: 1. In the original sense, a chemical that binds to and specifically k...

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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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Cirrhosis: Liver disease characterized by irreversible scarring. Alcohol and viral hepatit...

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Clinical trials: Trials to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of medications or medical...

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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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Cure: 1. To heal, to make well, to restore to good health. 2. A time withou...

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Depression: An illness that involves the body, mood, and thoughts and that affects the way...

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

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EBV: Epstein-Barr virus.

Edema: The swelling of soft tissues as a result of excess fluid accumulation. Edema is oft...

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Fatigue: A condition characterized by a lessened capacity for work and reduced efficiency ...

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Feces: The excrement discharged from the 'intestines.

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

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Gastroenterologist: A physician who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases...

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Genetic: Having to do with genes and genetic
information.

Genotype: The genetic constitution (genome) of a cell, an individual, or an organism. The ...

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HCV: Hepatitis C virus.

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

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Hemodialysis: A medical procedure to remove fluid and waste products from the blood and to...

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Hepatic: Having to do with the liver.

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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Hepatitis B: Inflammation of the liver due to the hepatitis B virus (HBV), once thought to...

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Hepatitis C: Inflammation of the liver due to the hepatitis C virus (HCV), which is usuall...

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Hepatitis C virus: A single-stranded RNA virus in the Flaviviridae family that causes hepa...

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Hepatocellular carcinoma: A cancer arising from the liver cells (hepatocytes). Liver damag...

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

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Hygiene: The science of preventive medicine and the preservation of health. Also commonly ...

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

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

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Interferon: A naturally occurring substance that interferes with the ability of viruses t...

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Intron: Part of a gene that is initially transcribed into the primary RNA transcript but i...

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

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Jaundice: Yellow staining of the skin and sclerae (the whites of the eyes) by abnormally h...

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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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Laboratory: A place for doing tests and research procedures, and for preparing chemicals a...

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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 biopsy: A procedure in which a small sample of the liver is removed for the diagnosi...

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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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Liver failure: a condition that occurs when the liver is damaged and no longer able to fun...

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Menstruation: The periodic blood that flows as a discharge from the uterus. Also called me...

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Microscope: An optical instrument that augments the power of the eye to see small objects....

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

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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.

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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Needle stick: See: Needlestick injury.

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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Piercing: Using a sharp instrument, usually a needle, to make a temporary or permanent ...

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Pregnancy: The state of carrying a developing embryo or fetus within the female body. Thi...

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

Prevalence: The proportion of individuals in a population having a disease or characterist...

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

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Primary care provider: In insurance parlance, a physician who is chosen by or assigned to ...

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

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Progressive: Increasing in scope or severity, advancing, or going forward. For example, a ...

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Protease: An enzyme that can split a protein into the peptides from which it was originall...

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Proteins: Large molecules composed of one or more chains of amino acids in a specific orde...

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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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Saliva: a watery secretion in the mouth produced by the salivary glands that aids in the d...

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

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Stage: As regards cancer, the extent of a cancer, especially whether the disease has spre...

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

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

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Symptomatic: 1 With symptoms, as a symptomatic infection. 2 Characteristic o...

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

Transfusion: The transfer of blood or blood products from one person (the donor) into the ...

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Transplant: The grafting of a tissue from one place to another, just as in botany a bu...

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Ultrasound: High-frequency sound waves. Ultra-sound waves can be bounced off tissues by us...

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

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Vaccination: Injection of a killed microbe in order to stimulate the immune system against...

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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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Vitamins: The word "vitamin" was coined in 1911 by the Warsaw-born biochemist Casimir Funk...

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Weight loss: Weight loss is a decrease in body weight resulting from either voluntary (die...

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Medical Dictionary