Myeloma Glossary of Terms

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

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

Adhesion: The union of two opposing tissue surfaces. This term is often used to refer to t...

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

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Albumin: The main protein in human blood and the key to regulating the osmotic pressure of...

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Allogeneic: Taken from different individuals of the same species. Two or more individuals ...

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Amyloid: Any of a number of complex proteins that are deposited in tissues and that share ...

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Amyloidosis: A group of diseases that result from the abnormal deposition of a protein, ca...

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

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Anemia: The condition of having a lower-than-normal number of red blood cells or quantity ...

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

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Aspirate: To suck in. A patient may aspirate for example by accidentally drawing material ...

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Aspiration: Removal of a sample of fluid and cells through a needle. Aspiration also re...

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

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Autologous: In blood transfusion and transplantation, a situation in which the donor and r...

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

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Blood clots: Blood that has been converted from a liquid to a solid state. Also called a t...

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Blood urea nitrogen: A measure of the urea level in blood. Abbreviated BUN. Diseases that ...

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Bone marrow: The soft blood-forming tissue that fills the cavities of bones and contains f...

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Bone marrow aspiration: The removal of a small amount of liquid bone marrow through a need...

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Bone marrow biopsy: The removal of a sample of bone marrow and a small amount of bone thro...

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Bone marrow transplantation: See: Bone marrow transplant.

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

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Bruise: Injury of the soft tissues that results in breakage of the local capillaries and l...

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C-reactive protein: An acute-phase plasma protein whose blood concentration reflects the p...

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Calcium: A mineral found mainly in the hard part of bones, where it is stored. Calcium is ...

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

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Carbon dioxide: A gas which is the byproduct of cellular metabolism and which collects in ...

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CBC: A commonly used abbreviation in medicine that stands for complete blood count, a set...

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

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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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Chest X-ray: A type of X-ray commonly used to detect abnormalities in the lungs. A chest X...

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Chromosome: A carrier of genetic information that is visible under an ordinary light micro...

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

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Clinical trial: A study that is intended to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of medic...

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

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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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Congestive heart failure: Inability of the heart to keep up with the demands on it, with f...

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Consolidation therapy: Cancer treatment given after induction therapy to consolidate the g...

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

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Corticosteroid: Any of the steroid hormones made by the outer portion (cortex) of the adre...

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Cortisone: A naturally occurring adrenocorticoid hormone that is produced in minute amount...

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Creatinine: A chemical waste molecule that is generated from muscle metabolism. Creatinine...

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CRP: C-reactive protein.

Cryoglobulinemia: The presence in blood of abnormal proteins called cryoglobulins that hav...

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

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

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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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Donor: The giver of a tissue or an organ, such as a blood donor or kidney donor.

Dysfunction: Difficult function or abnormal function.

Electrophoresis: A method used in clinical and research laboratories for separating molecu...

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Enzyme: A protein (or protein-based molecule) that speeds up a chemical reaction in a livi...

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Excision: 1. Surgical removal, as in the excision of a tumor. 2. The remov...

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

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

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Genetic: Having to do with genes and genetic
information.

Hair loss: Hair loss is the thinning of hair on the scalp. The medical term for hair loss ...

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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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Heart failure: Inability of the heart to keep up with the demands on it and, specifically...

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Hematocrit: The proportion of the blood that consists of packed red blood cells. The hema...

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Hematologist: A physician who specializes in diagnosing and treating diseases of the blood...

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Hemoglobin: The oxygen-carrying pigment and predominant protein in the red blood cells. He...

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Hypercalcemia: A higher-than-normal level of calcium in the blood. Hypercalcemia can be a ...

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

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

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Immunoglobulin: A protein produced by plasma cells and lymphocytes and characteristic of t...

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Incidence: The frequency with which something, such as a disease or trait, appears in a pa...

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

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Induction therapy: The first in a series of therapeutic measures taken to treat a disease,...

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Infuse: In medicine, to introduce a solution into the body through a vein. An infusion is ...

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Interventional: Pertaining to the act of intervening, interfering or interceding with the ...

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Irradiation: The use of high-energy radiation from x-rays, gamma rays, neutrons, and other...

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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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Lactate dehydrogenase: (LDH) An enzyme that catalyzes the conversion of lactate to pyruvat...

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LDH: Lactate dehydrogenase.

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

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Lesion: An area of abnormal tissue change. Lesions vary in severity from harmless to serio...

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Lethargy: Abnormal drowsiness, stupor.

Limb: An arm or a leg.

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

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Local therapy: In the context of cancer, treatment that affects cells in the tumor and the...

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Lymphatics: Small thin channels similar to blood vessels that do not carry blood, but coll...

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Lymphocytes: A small white blood cell (leukocyte) that plays a large role in defending the...

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Lytic: Suffix having to do with lysis (destruction), as in hemolytic anemia, the excessive...

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M protein: An antibody or part of an antibody found in unusually large amounts in the bloo...

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Magnetic resonance imaging: A procedure that uses magnetism, radio waves, and a computer t...

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Malignant: 1. Tending to be severe and become progressively worse, as in malignant ...

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Marker: A piece of DNA that lies on a chromosome so close to a gene that the marker and t...

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Marrow: The bone marrow.

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

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

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Monoclonal: Derived from a single cell and cells identical to that cell.

Morbidity: Illness, disease.

Morphology: 1. Literally, the study of form. The study of structure.
2./...

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Mortality: A fatal outcome or, in one word, death. The word "mortality" is derived from "m...

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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.

Multiple myeloma: A bone marrow cancer that involves a type of white blood cell called a p...

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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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Myeloma: A tumor of antibody-producing cells, called plasma cells, that are normally foun...

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

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

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Neuropathy: Any disease or malfunction of the nerves.

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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Oncologist: A physician who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. After a ...

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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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Osteolytic: Pertaining to the dissolution of bone, especially the loss of calcium from bon...

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Osteolytic lesion: A "punched-out" area of severe bone loss. Osteolytic lesions are seen i...

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Osteoporosis: Thinning of the bones, with reduction in bone mass, due to depletion of calc...

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

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Pathologic: 1. Indicative of or caused by disease, as in a pathologic fracture, pat...

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Pathologic fracture: A bone broken, not by trauma alone, but so weakened by disease as to ...

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Pathologist: A physician who identifies diseases and conditions by studying abnormal cells...

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

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Pelvis: The lower part of the abdomen, located between the hip bones. Structures in the fe...

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

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Plasma: The liquid part of the blood and lymphatic fluid, which makes up about half of the...

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Plasma cell: A type of white blood cell that produces and secretes antibodies. A plasma ce...

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Plasmacytoma: Cancer of the plasma cells (white blood cells that produce antibodies) that ...

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Platelet: An irregular, disc-shaped element in the blood that assists in blood clotting....

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Platelet count: The calculated number of platelets in a volume of blood, usually expressed...

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Precancerous: Pertaining to something that is not yet overtly cancerous, but appears to be...

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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.

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

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Prognostic: Pertaining to the prognosis, the outlook for the patient.

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

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Proteasome: A protein degradation "machine" within the cell that can digest a variety of p...

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Protein: One of the three nutrients used as energy sources (calories) by the body. Protein...

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

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Quality of life: The patient's ability to enjoy normal life activities. Quality of life is...

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Radiation: 1. Rays of energy. Gamma rays and X-rays are two of the types of energy ...

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Radiation oncologist: A physician whose specialty is the use of radiation therapy as a tre...

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Radiation therapy: The use of high-energy rays to damage cancer cells, stopping them from ...

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RBC: Short for red blood cells, the cells that carry oxygen and carbon dioxide through the...

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Reabsorption: Being absorbed again. For example, the kidney selectively reabsorbs substanc...

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

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

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Recurrent: Appearing or occurring again. For example, a recurrent fever is a fever that ha...

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Red blood cell: The blood cell that carries oxygen. Red cells contain hemoglobin and it is...

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Red blood cells: The blood cells that carry oxygen. Red cells contain hemoglobin and it is...

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Red cell count: The number of red blood cells (RBCs) in a volume of blood. The normal ran...

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

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Refractory: Not yielding, or not yielding readily, to treatment.

Regimen: A plan or a regulated course, such as a diet, exercise, or treatment, that is des...

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Relapse: The return of signs and symptoms of a disease after a remission.

Remission: Disappearance of the signs and symptoms of cancer or other disease. A remission...

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Renal: Having to do with the kidney. For example, renal cancer is cancer of the kidneys.

Samaritan: See Good Samaritan.

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

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Sensitivity: 1. In psychology, the quality of being sensitive. As, for example, sen...

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Serum: The clear liquid that can be separated from clotted blood. Serum differs from plas...

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

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Skeletal: Pertaining to the skeleton, the bones of the body that collectively provide the ...

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Skeleton: The skeleton is composed of bones and is the framework of the body.

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

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Spine: 1) The column of bone known as the vertebral column, which surrounds and protects ...

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

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Staging: stagingDoing exams and tests to learn the extent of a cancer, especially whether ...

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Stem cell: One of the human body's master cells, with the ability to grow into any one of ...

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Stem cell transplantation: The use of stem cells as a treatment for cancer or other illnes...

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Stem cells: One of the human body's master cells, with the ability to grow into any one of...

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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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Substance: 1. Material with particular features.
2. The material that...

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Supportive care: Treatment given to prevent, control, or relieve complications and side ef...

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

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

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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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Systemic therapy: Treatment that reaches cells throughout the body by traveling through th...

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Therapeutic: Relating to therapeutics, the branch of medicine that is concerned specifical...

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

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Urea: A nitrogen-containing substance normally cleared from the blood by the kidney into t...

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

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

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Vein: A blood vessel that carries blood that is low in oxygen content from the body back t...

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Vertebrae: The preferred plural of vertebra. (The alternate plural is vertebras.) See also...

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Vertebroplasty: A nonsurgical method for repairing osteoporosis back fractures, such as ve...

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Vessel: A tube in the body that carries fluids. Examples of vessels are blood vessels and ...

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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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Warfarin: An anticoagulant drug (brand names: Coumarin, Panwarfin, Sofarin) taken to prev...

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WBC: White blood cell.

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

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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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