Sleeplessness and Circadian Rhythm Disorder Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Sleeplessness and Circadian Rhythm Disorder article.

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

Alzheimer disease: See: Alzheimer's disease.

Benzodiazepines: A class of drugs that act as tranquilizers and are commonly used in the t...

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Blind: 1. Unable to see. Without part or all of the sense of sight.
2....

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

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Caffeine: A stimulant compound found naturally in coffee, tea, cocoa (chocolate), and kola...

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

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Circadian: Refers to events occurring within the span of a full 24-hour day, as in a circa...

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Cognitive: Having to do with thought, judgment, or knowledge.

Contrast: Short for "contrast media." Contrast media are X-ray dyes used to provide contra...

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CT scan: Computed tomography scan. Detailed images of internal organs are obtained by this...

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Dysfunction: Difficult function or abnormal function.

Endocrine: Pertaining to hormones and the glands that make and secrete them into the blood...

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Exacerbate: To make worse. For example, smoking may exacerbate lung disease.

Excessive daytime sleepiness: A neurological disorder in which there is a sudden recurrent...

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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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FDA: Food and Drug Administration.

Food and Drug Administration: An agency within the US Public Health Service that provides ...

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Gastrointestinal: Adjective referring collectively to the stomach and small and large inte...

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Gland: A group of cells that secrete a substance for use in the body. For example, the thy...

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Herbal: 1. An adjective, referring to herbs, as in an herbal tea.
2. A...

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Hormone: A chemical substance produced in the body that controls and regulates the activit...

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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.

Immunosuppressive: 1. Pertaining to immunosuppression, the suppression of the immun...

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Insomnia: The perception or complaint of inadequate or poor-quality sleep due to a number ...

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

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Jet lag: A temporary disorder that causes fatigue, insomnia, and other symptoms as a resu...

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Melatonin: A hormone that is produced by the pineal gland and is intimately involved in re...

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Modafinil: An oral drug first approved by the FDA in 1998 for the treatment of narcolepsy,...

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MRI: Magnetic resonance imaging.

Narcolepsy: A neurological disorder that is marked by the recurrent, sudden, uncontrollabl...

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

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Objective: In a microscope, the objective (also called the objective lens) is the lens nea...

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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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Pacemaker: A system that sends electrical impulses to the heart in order to set the hear...

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Pineal gland: A small gland that is located near the center of the brain. This gland secre...

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Prescription: A physician's order for the preparation and administration of a drug or dev...

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Prescription drug: A drug requiring a prescription, as opposed to an over-the-counter drug...

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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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Rebound: The reversal of response upon withdrawal of a stimulus.

Scan: As a noun, the data or image obtained from the examination of organs or regions of...

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

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Sleep: The body's rest cycle.

Sleep disorders: Any disorder that affects, disrupts, or involves sleep. The most common...

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Sleep hygiene: A series of practices and non-medical treatments for insomnia. Sleep hygien...

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Sleeplessness: Insomnia. See also Fatal familial insomnia.

Snoring: A rough rattling noise made on inspiration during sleep by vibration of the soft ...

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

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Sundowning: also known as Sundown Syndrome, a term used to refer to behavioral changes tha...

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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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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.

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

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