Sickle Cell Disease Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Sickle Cell Disease 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.

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

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

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Avascular necrosis: A condition in which poor blood supply to an area of bone leads to bon...

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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.

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

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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 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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Capillaries: Capillaries are the smallest of blood vessels. They serve to distribute oxyge...

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

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Cascade: A sequence of successive activation reactions involving enzymes (enzyme cascade) ...

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

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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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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 cau...

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

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Family history: The family structure and relationships within the family, including inform...

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

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Femur: The single bone in the thigh, which is the largest bone in the human body. Also kno...

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

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Gene: The basic biological unit of heredity. A segment of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) need...

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Genetic: Having to do with genes and genetic
information.

Genetic counseling: An educational counseling process for individuals and families who hav...

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

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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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Hemoglobin S: The most common type of abnormal hemoglobin and the basis of sickle cell tr...

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Humerus: The long bone in the upper arm that extends from the shoulder to the elbow.

Hydroxyurea: A drug that inhibits the synthesis of DNA and so is classified as an antimeta...

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Hypoxia: A lower-than-normal concentration of oxygen in arterial blood, as opposed to anox...

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Icterus: Jaundice. At least one medical dictionary defines icterus as the presence of jaun...

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

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

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Lightheadedness: A feeling you are "going to faint." Lightheadedness is medically distinc...

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

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Marrow: The bone marrow.

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

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Molecule: The smallest unit of a substance that can exist alone and retain the character o...

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Mutation: A permanent change, a structural alteration, in the DNA or RNA. In humans and m...

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

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

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Neonatal: Pertaining to the newborn period, specifically the first 4 weeks after birth.

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

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Outpatient: A patient who is not hospitalized, but instead comes to a physician?s office, ...

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Oxygen: The odorless gas that is present in the air and necessary to maintain life. Oxygen...

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Oxygenation: The addition of oxygen to any system, including the human body. Oxygenation m...

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

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Palpitations: Unpleasant sensations of irregular and/or forceful beating of the heart. In ...

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Penicillin: The most famous of all antibiotics, named for the fungal mold Penicillium n...

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

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Priapism: Abnormally persistent erection of the penis in the absence of desire. Treatments...

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

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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 cells: Short for red blood cells, the oxygen/carbon dioxide carrying cells in blood. A...

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Rehydration: The process of restoring lost water (dehydration) to the body tissues and flu...

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

Retina: The retina is the nerve layer that lines the back of the eye, senses light, and cr...

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Retinal: Pertaining to the retina, the extraordinary layer of neurons (nerve cells) that ...

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Retinal detachment: A separation of the retina from its connection at the back of the eye....

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Retinopathy: Any disease of the retina, the light-sensitive membrane at the back of the ey...

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Salmonella: A group of bacteria that cause typhoid fever and a number of other illnesses...

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

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Sickle cell anemia: A genetic blood disease due to the presence of an abnormal form of hem...

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

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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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Stress: In a medical or biological context stress is a physical, mental, or emotional fact...

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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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Subacute: Rather recent onset or somewhat rapid change. In contrast, acute indicates very ...

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

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

Tibia: The larger of the two long bones in the lower leg. The tibia is familiarly known as...

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

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

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

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