Smallpox Glossary of Terms

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

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

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Aerosolization: The production of an aerosol -- a fine mist or spray containing minute par...

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Allergy: A misguided reaction to foreign substances by the immune system, the body system ...

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Anthrax: A serious bacterial infection caused by Bacillus anthracis that occurs primarily ...

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

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Arms: An appendage in anatomy and in clinical trials. See: Arm.

Arthritis: Inflammation of a joint. When joints are inflamed they can develop stiffness, w...

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Assay: An assay is an analysis done to determine:

  1. The presence of a substance an...

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Atopic: A predisposition toward developing certain allergic hypersensitivity reactions. At...

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Atopic dermatitis: A skin disease characterized by areas of severe itching, redness, scali...

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

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Biosafety: The application of knowledge, techniques and equipment to prevent personal, lab...

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Biosafety level: A specific combination of work practices, safety equipment, and facilitie...

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Biotechnology: The fusion of biology and technology, the application of biological techniq...

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Bioterrorism: Terrorism using biologic agents that are harmful to humans. Biological disea...

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Blindness: Loss of useful sight. Blindness can be temporary or permanent. Damage to any p...

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Blister: A collection of fluid underneath the top layer of skin (epidermis). There are man...

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

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Breathing: The process of respiration, during which air is inhaled into the lungs through ...

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Calf: The belly or fleshy hind part of the back of the leg below the knee. The calf is mad...

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

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

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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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Chickenpox: A highly infectious viral disease also known medically as varicella -- in many...

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Chills: feelings of coldness accompanied by shivering. Chills may develop after exposure t...

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

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Cowpox: A mild skin disease of milk cows, principally confined to the udder and teats, tha...

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

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Dermatitis: Inflammation of the skin, either due to an inherent skin defect, direct contac...

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Diagnosis: 1 The nature of a disease; the identification of an illness. 2 A ...

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DNA: Deoxyribonucleic acid. One of two types of molecules that encode genetic information...

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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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Eczema (dermatitis): A particular type of inflammatory reaction of the skin in which there...

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Elbow: The juncture of the long bones in the middle portion of the upper extremity. The bo...

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ELISA: Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, a rapid immunochemical test that involves an enz...

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

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Epidemic: The occurrence of more cases of a disease than would be expected in a community...

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FDA: Food and Drug Administration.

Fetus: An unborn offspring, from the embryo stage (the end of the eighth week after concep...

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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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Genetic: Having to do with genes and genetic
information.

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

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Hemorrhagic: Pertaining to bleeding or the abnormal flow of blood.

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

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

Immune response: Any reaction by the immune system. For example, poison ivy can cause an i...

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

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Immunity: The condition of being immune. Immunity can be innate'for example, humans are in...

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Immunization: Vaccination. Immunizations work by stimulating the immune system, the natur...

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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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Infant: A young baby, from birth to 12 months of age.

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

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Isolate: To separate from others as during an infectious disease.

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

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Lumbar: Referring to the five lumbar vertebrae, the disks below them, and the correspondin...

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Lumbar puncture: A procedure in which cerebrospinal fluid is removed from the spinal canal...

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

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Lymph: The almost colorless fluid that travels through the lymphatic system, carrying cell...

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Macules: Small circumscribed changes in the color of skin that are neither raised (eleva...

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

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

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Molluscum contagiosum: A contagious disease of the skin marked by the occurrence of rounde...

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Monkeypox: A rare zoonotic (animal-borne) viral disease similar to smallpox. The virus res...

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Mouth: 1. The upper opening of the digestive tract, beginning with the lips and con...

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Mucous: Pertaining to mucus, a thick fluid produced by the lining of some tissues of the b...

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Nucleus: 1) In cell biology, the structure that houses the chromosomes. 2) In neuroanato...

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Nursing: 1) Profession concerned with the provision of services essential to the maintena...

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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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Osteomyelitis: Inflammation of the bone due to infection, for example, by the bacteria sal...

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Pimples: Small papules or pustules. See: Pimple.

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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Public health: The approach to medicine that is concerned with the health of the community...

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Pustule: A pustule is a small collection of pus in the top layer of skin (epidermis) or be...

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Quarantine: A period of isolation decreed to control the spread of infectious disease. Bef...

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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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Recombination: The trading of fragments of genetic material between chromosomes before the...

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Residual: Something left behind. With residual disease, the disease has not been eradicate...

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Resistance: Opposition to something, or the ability to withstand something. For example, s...

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Smallpox: A highly contagious and frequently fatal viral disease that is characterized by ...

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Smallpox bioterrorism: The misuse of smallpox as an agent of bioterrorism.

Smallpox vaccine: A vaccine that contains a live virus called vaccinia that is used to pre...

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Sore: 1. (adjective) A popular term for painful, such as a sore throat. 2. (...

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

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

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Vaccines: Microbial preparations of killed or modified microorganisms that can stimulate a...

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Vaccinia: 1. The cowpox virus which is used to vaccinate against smallpox. 2....

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Variola: Smallpox, a highly contagious and frequently fatal viral disease characterized...

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Vesicles: In dermatology, vesicles are small blisters, most often on the skin. Vesicles al...

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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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Virology: The study of viruses.

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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World Health Organization: The subagency of the United Nations (UN) that is concerned with...

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Medical Dictionary