Tetanus Glossary of Terms

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

Abrasion: An abrasion or "excoriation" is a wearing away of the upper layer of s...

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Acellular: Not made up of cells or divided into cells. Or lacking intact cells as, for ex...

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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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Allergic reaction: The hypersensitive response of the immune system of an allergic indiv...

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

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Anaerobic: Not requiring oxygen. Anaerobic bacteria, for example, do not require oxygen to...

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Anaphylaxis: Allergic reaction. In severe cases, this can include potentially deadly anap...

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Antigen: A substance that the immune system perceives as being foreign or dangerous. The b...

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Antitoxin: An antibody produced in response to and capable of neutralizing a specific biol...

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

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Axon: A long fiber of a nerve cell (a neuron) that acts somewhat like a fiber-optic cable ...

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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.

Bacterium: The singular of bacteria.

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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 pressure: The blood pressure is the pressure of the blood within the arteries. It is...

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Booster shot: An additional dose of a vaccine needed periodically to 'boost' the immune sy...

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

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Brainstem: The lowest part of the brain which merges with the spinal cord and provides the...

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

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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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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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Cephalic: Relating to the head or the head end of the body. Situated on, in, or near the h...

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

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Clostridium: A group of anaerobic bacteria (bacteria that thrive in the absence of oxygen)...

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Coma: A state of deep, unarousable unconsciousness. A coma may occur as a result of head t...

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Contraction: The tightening and shortening of a muscle.

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Contraindication: A condition which makes a particular treatment or procedure potentially ...

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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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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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Diphtheria: An acute infectious upper respiratory tract disease that affects the throat. I...

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Doxycycline: Brand name: Vibramycin. A synthetic broad-spectrum antibiotic derived from te...

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DPT: Diphtheria-Pertussis-Tetanus vaccine. Today the more frequent abbreviation is DTP (fo...

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DTaP: Diphtheria-Tetanus-acellular Pertussis vaccine.

Ear: The hearing organ. There are three sections of the ear, according to the anatomy tex...

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

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Facial muscle: One of the 43 muscles in the human face. The facial muscles convey basic hu...

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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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Frostbite: Damage to tissues from freezing due to the formation of ice crystals within cel...

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

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Glycine: An amino acid, one of the 20 building blocks of protein. A nonessential amino aci...

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Gram-positive: Gram-positive bacteria retain the color of the crystal violet stain in the ...

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Head injury: Damage to any of the structures of the head as a result of trauma. While the ...

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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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High blood pressure: A repeatedly elevated blood pressure exceeding 140 over 90 mmHg. Chro...

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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.

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

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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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Incubation period: In medicine, the time from the moment of exposure to an infectious agen...

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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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Injury: Harm or hurt. To harm, hurt, or wound. The word injure may be in physical or emot...

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Jaw: The movable junction of the bones below the mouth (the mandible) and the bone just ab...

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

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Laceration: A cut.

Lockjaw: See Tetanus.

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

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Lymphatic: Pertaining to a small, thin channel that is similar to a blood vessel and that ...

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Mechanical ventilation: Use of a machine called a ventilator or respirator to improve the ...

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Median: The middle, as in the median strip in a highway. For example, the median nerve is ...

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Metabolic: Relating to metabolism, the whole range of biochemical processes that occur wit...

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Mortality: Susceptible to death.

Motor: Something that produces or refers to motion. For example, a motor neuron is a nerve...

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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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Nail: In medicine, there are two types of nails. One is just a plain old metal nail used 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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Neonatal: Pertaining to the newborn period, specifically the first 4 weeks after birth.

Neonate: A newborn baby, specifically a baby in the first 4 weeks after birth. After a mon...

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

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Open wound: An injury that is exposed because of broken skin. An open wound is at high ris...

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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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Pathogenic: Capable of causing disease. For example, pathogenic E. coli are Eschericia col...

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Pediatric: Pertaining to children.

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

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Pertussis: Pertussis, also known as "whooping cough," is a highly contagious, acute respir...

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

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Poison: Any substance that can cause severe organ damage or death if ingested, breathed in...

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Polio: Abbreviation for poliomyelitis, an acute and sometimes devastating disease caused ...

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PPD: 1. Postpartum depression. 2. Purified protein derivative (the PPD skin ...

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

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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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Puncture wound: An injury that is caused by a pointed object that pierces or penetrates th...

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

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Respiratory: Having to do with respiration.

Respiratory failure: Inability of the lungs to perform their basic task of gas exchange, t...

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Scrape: An abrasion or cut caused by something rubbing roughly against the skin. To treat ...

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Seizure: Uncontrolled electrical activity in the brain, which may produce a physical conv...

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

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

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

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Spasm: A brief, automatic jerking movement. A muscle spasm can be quite painful, with the ...

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Spinal cord: The major column of nerve tissue that is connected to the brain and lies with...

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Surgery: The branch of medicine that employs operations in the treatment of disease or inj...

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Synapse: A specialized junction at which a neural cell (neuron) communicates with a target...

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

Tetanus: An often fatal infectious disease that is caused by the bacterium Clostridium tet...

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Tired: A feeling of a lessened capacity for work and reduced efficiency of accomplishment,...

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Tiredness: See: Tired.

Toxin: A poison produced by certain animals, plants, or bacteria.

Trauma: A physical or emotional injury.

Trismus: Inability to open the mouth fully. This may be due to spasm of the jaw muscles an...

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Tuberculosis: A highly contagious infection caused by the bacterium called Mycobacteriu...

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Umbilical cord: The cord that connects the developing fetus with the placenta while the fe...

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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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Ventilation: The exchange of air between the lungs and the atmosphere so that oxygen can b...

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Ventilator: A machine that mechanically assists a patient in the exchange of oxygen and ca...

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Vibramycin: Brand name for doxycycline.

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Whooping cougn: Whooping cough, also known as "pertussis," is a highly contagious, acute r...

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Medical Dictionary