Ultrasound Glossary of Terms

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

Abdominal: Relating to the abdomen, the belly, that part of the body that contains all of ...

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Abdominal aorta: The abdominal aorta is the final section of the aorta, the largest ar...

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Abdominal cavity: The cavity within the abdomen, the space between the abdominal wall and...

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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.

Abscess: A local accumulation of pus anywhere in the body. The following are some example...

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Aneurysm: A localized widening (dilatation) of an artery, a vein, or the heart. At the poi...

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Aorta: The largest artery in the body, the aorta arises from the left ventricle of the he...

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Aortic: Pertaining to the aorta, the largest artery in the body.

Aortic aneurysm: An outpouching (a local widening) of the largest artery in the body, the ...

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Aortic stenosis: Narrowing (stenosis) of the aortic valve, the valve between the left vent...

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Appendix: A small outpouching from the beginning of the large intestine.

Artery: A vessel that carries blood high in oxygen content away from the heart to the far...

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Ascites: An abnormal accumulation of fluid within the abdomen. There are many causes of as...

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Aspiration: Removal by suction of fluid and cells through a needle. Aspiration also refer...

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Atrial: Pertaining to the atria, the upper chambers of the heart, as in atrial fibrillatio...

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Atrial fibrillation: An abnormal and irregular heart rhythm in which electrical signals ar...

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

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Bladder: A hollow organ in the lower abdomen that stores urine. The kidneys filter waste f...

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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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Bowel: The small and large intestine.

Breast cancer: Breast cancer is diagnosed with self- and physician-examination of the brea...

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

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Cardiology: The study and treatment of heart disorders.

Carotid: Pertaining to the carotid artery and the area near that key artery, which is loca...

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Cataract: A clouding or loss of transparency of the lens in the eye as a result of tissu...

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Cataract surgery: Removal of the clouded (cataractous) lens in its entirety via surgery an...

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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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Computerized tomography: Pictures of structures within the body created by a computer that...

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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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Cyst: A closed sac or capsule, usually filled with fluid or semisolid material.

Cysts: Cysts are abnormal, closed sac-like structures within a tissue that contain a liqui...

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Dilatation: The process of enlargement or expansion. Also known as dilation.

Doppler ultrasound: A form of ultrasound that can detect and measure blood flow. Doppler u...

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Echocardiography: Echocardiography is a diagnostic test which uses ultrasound waves to mak...

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Endometriosis: The presence of tissue that normally grows inside the uterus (womb) in an ...

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Epididymitis: Inflammation of the epididymis. Epididymitis can be caused by sexually acqui...

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Esophagus: The tube that connects the pharynx (throat) with the stomach. The esophagus lie...

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ESWL: Extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy.

Extracorporeal: Outside the body, in the anatomic sense. As in extracorporeal circulation,...

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Fasciitis: Inflammation of the fascia.

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

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Fibrillation: In cardiology, an abnormal and erratic twitching of the heart muscle.

Fibroids: Fibroids are common, benign tumors of smooth muscle in the uterus (womb). Uterin...

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

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

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Gallbladder: A pear-shaped organ located below the liver that stores the bile secreted by ...

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Gallstones: Stones that form when substances in the bile harden. Gallstones can be as smal...

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Groin: The area where the thigh meets the hip.

Gynecology: The branch of medicine that is particularly concerned with the health of the f...

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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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Hemostasis: The stoppage of bleeding or hemorrhage. Also, the stoppage of blood flow throu...

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Hypertension: High blood pressure, defined as a repeatedly elevated blood pressure exceedi...

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

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Inflammation: A localized reaction that produces redness, warmth, swelling, and pain as a ...

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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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Knee: The knee is a joint which has three parts. The thigh bone (the femur) meets the lar...

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

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Lithotripsy: A procedure to break a stone into small particles that can be passed in the u...

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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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Mitral valve: A valve in the heart that is situated between the left atrium and the left v...

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Mitral valve prolapse: A common heart valve anomaly affecting 5'10 percent of people that ...

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Neck: The part of the body joining the head to the shoulders. Also, any narrow or constric...

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Obese: Well above one's normal weight. A person has traditionally been considered to be ob...

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Obstetrics: The art and science of managing pregnancy, labor, and the puerperium (the time...

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

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Ovarian: Of or pertaining to the ovary.

Ovary: The female gonad, one of a pair of reproductive glands in women. The ovaries are lo...

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

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Pancreas: A spongy, tube-shaped organ that is about 6 inches long and is located in the ba...

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Pelvic: Having to do with the pelvis, the lower part of the abdomen, located between the h...

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Pericardial: Referring to the pericardium, the sac of fibrous tissue that surrounds the he...

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Plantar: Having to do with the sole of the foot.

Plantar fasciitis: Inflammation of the plantar fascia, the bowstring-like tissue that stre...

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Pleural: Pertaining to the pleura, the thin covering that protects the lungs. The term "pl...

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

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Pregnancy ultrasound: Creating an image of the developing fetus within the uterus by means...

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Pregnant: The state of carrying a developing fetus within the body.

Probe: 1: In surgery, a probe is a slender flexible rod with a blunt end used to explore, ...

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Prostate: A gland within the male reproductive system that is located just below the blad...

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Pulmonary: Having to do with the lungs.

Pulmonary artery: One of the two vessels which are formed as terminal branches of the pulm...

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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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Radiologist: A physician specialized in radiology, the branch of medicine that uses ionizi...

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Rectum: The last 6 to 8 inches of the large intestine. The rectum stores solid waste until...

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

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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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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Shock: In medicine, a critical condition that is brought on by a sudden drop in blood flow...

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Stenosis: A narrowing. For example, aortic stenosis is a narrowing of the aortic valve in ...

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Superficial: In anatomy, on the surface or shallow. As opposed to deep. The skin is superf...

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

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Tendinitis: Inflammation of a tendon (the tissue by which muscle attaches to bone). Tendin...

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

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Thrombosis: The formation or presence of a blood clot in a blood vessel. The vessel may be...

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Thyroid: 1. The thyroid gland. Also, pertaining to the thyroid gland. 2. A p...

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Tomography: The process for generating a tomogram, a two-dimensional image of a slice or s...

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Transducer: An instrument that converts electrical energy into mechanical energy. A transd...

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Transvaginal ultrasound: The creation of a picture called a sonogram by sending sound wave...

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Tubes: The "tubes" are medically known as the Fallopian tubes. There are two Fallopian tub...

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Ultrasound: High-frequency sound waves. Ultra-sound waves can be bounced off tissues by us...

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Urinary: Having to do with the function or anatomy of the kidneys, ureters, bladder, or ur...

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Urinary tract: The organs of the body that produce, store, and discharge urine. These orga...

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Uterine fibroids: Uterine fibroids are benign tumors of the uterus (the womb). They are th...

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Uterus: A hollow, pear-shaped organ that is located in a woman's lower abdomen, between th...

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Vagina: The muscular canal that extends from the cervix to the outside of the body. It is ...

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