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Chapter 09, MedTerms

Circulation: The Cardiovascular and Lymphatic Systems

TermDefinition
aorta The largest artery; it receives blood from the left ventricle and branches to all parts of the body (root: aort/o)
aortic valve The valve at the entrance to the aorta
apex The point of a cone-shaped structure (adjective: apical); the apex of the heart is formed by the left ventricle and is pointed toward the inferior and left
artery A vessel that carries blood away from the heart; all except the pulmonary and umbilical arteries carry oxygenated blood (root: arter, arteri/o)
arteriole A small vessel that carries blood from the arteries into the capillaries (root: arteriol/o)
atrioventricular (AV) node A small mass in the lower septum of the right atrium that passes impulses from the sinoatrial (SA) node toward the ventricles
atrioventricular (AV) valve A valve between the atrium and ventricle on the right and left sides of the heart; the right AV valve is the tricuspid valve; the left is the mitral valve
atrium An entrance chamber, one of the two upper receiving chambers of the heart (root: atri/o)
AV bundle A band of fibers that transmits impulses from the atrioventricular (AV) node to the top of the interventricular septum; it divides into the right and left bundle branches, which descend along the two sides of the septum; the bundle of His
blood pressure The force exerted by blood against the wall of a vessel
bundle branches Branches of the AV bundle that divide to the right and left sides of the interventricular and the tissues
capillary A microscopic blood vessel through which materials are exchanged between the blood and the tissues
cardiovascular system The part of the circulatory system that consists of the heart and the blood vessels
depolarization A change in electrical charge from the resting state in nerves or muscles
diastole The relaxation phase of the heartbeat cycle (adjective: diastolic)
electrocardiography (ECG) Study of the electrical activity of the heart as detected by electrodes (leads) placed on the surface of the body; also abbreviated EKG from the German electrocardiography
endocardium The thin membrane that lines the chambers of the heart and covers the valves
epicardium The thin outermost layer of the heart wall
functional murmur Any sound produces as the heart functions normally
heart The muscular organ with four chambers that contracts rhythmically to propel blood through vessels to all parts of the body (root: cardi/o)
heart rate The number of times the heart contracts per minute; recorded as beats per minute (bpm)
heart sounds Sounds produced as the heart functions: the two loudest sounds are produced by alternate closing of the valves and are designated S1 and S2
inferior vena cava The large inferior vein that brings blood low in oxygen back to the right atrium of the heart from the lower body
left AV valve The valve between the left atrium and the left ventricle; the mitral valve or bicuspid valve
mitral valve The valve between the left atrium and the left ventricle; the left AV valve or bicuspid valve
myocardium The thick middle layer of the heart wall composed of cardiac muscle
pericardium The fibrous sac that surrounds the heart
pulmonary artery The vessel that carries blood from the right side of the heart to the lungs
pulmonary circuit The system of vessels that carries blood from the right side of the heart to the lungs to be oxygenated and then back to the left side of the heart
pulmonary veins The vessels that carry blood from the lungs to the left side of the heart
pulmonary valve The valve at the entrance to the pulmonary artery
pulse The wave of increased pressure produced in the vessels each time the ventricles contract
Purkinje fibers The terminal fibers of the cardiac conducting system; they carry impulses through the walls of the ventricles
repolarization A return of electrical charge to the resting state in nerves or muscles
right AV valve The valve between the right atrium and right ventricle; the tricuspid valve
septum A wall dividing two cavities, such as two chambers of the heart
sinus rhythm Normal heart rhythm
sinoatrial (SA) node A small mass in the upper part of the right atrium that initiates the impulse for each heartbeat; the pacemaker
sphygmomanometer An instrument for determining arterial blood pressure (root sphygm/o means "pulse"); blood pressure apparatus or cuff
superior vena cava The large superior vein that brings blood low in oxygen back to the right atrium from the upper body
systemic circuit The system of vessels that carries oxygenated blood from the left side of the heart to all tissues except the lungs and returns deoxygenated blood to the right side of the heart
systole The contraction phase of the heartbeat cycle (adjective: systolic)
valve A structure that keeps fluid flowing in a forward direction (roots: valv/o, valvul/o)
vein A vessel that carries blood back to the heart. All except the pulmonary and umbilical veins carry blood low in oxygen (roots: ven/o, phleb/o)
ventricle A small cavity. One of the two lower pumping chambers of the heart (root: ventricul/o)
venule A small vessel that carries blood from the capillaries to the veins
vessel A tube or duct to transport fluid (roots: angi/o, vas/o, vascul/o)
cardi/o heart
atri/o atrium
ventricul/o cavity, ventricle
valv/o, valvul/o valve
angi/o vessel
vas/o, vascul/o vessel, duct
arter/o, arteri/o artery
arteriol/o arteriole
aort/o aorta
ven/o, ven/i vein
phleb/o vein
aneurysm A localized abnormal dilation of a blood vessel, usually an artery, caused by weakness of the vessel wall; may eventually burst
angina pectoris A feeling of constriction around the heart or pain that may radiate to the left arm or shoulder, usually brought on by exertion; caused by insufficient blood supply to the heart
arrhythmia Any abnormality in the rate or rhythm of the heartbeat (literally "without rhythm;" note doubled r); also called dysrhythmia
arteriosclerosis Hardening (sclerosis) of the arteries, with loss of capacity and loss of elasticity, as from fatty deposits (plaque), deposit of calcium salts, or scar tissue formation
atherosclerosis The development of fatty, fibrous patches (plaques) in the lining of arteries, causing narrowing of the lumen and hardening of the vessel wall; the most common form of arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) (root ather/o means "porridge" or "gruel")
bradycardia A slow heart rate of less than 60 bpm
cerebrovascular accident (CVA) Sudden damage to the brain resulting from reduction of blood flow; causes include atherosclerosis, embolism, thrombosis, or hemorrhage from a ruptured aneurysm; commonly called stroke
clubbing Enlargement of the ends of the fingers and toes caused by growth of the soft tissue around the nails; seen in a variety of diseases in which there is poor peripheral circulation
coarctation of the aorta Localized narrowing of the aorta with restriction of blood flow
C-reactive protein (CRP) Protein produced during systemic inflammation, which may contribute to atherosclerosis; high CRP levels can indicate cardiovascular disease and its prognosis
cyanosis Bluish discoloration of the skin caused by lack of oxygen
deep vein thrombosis (DVT) Thrombophlebitis involving the deep veins
diaphoresis Profuse sweating
dissecting aneurysm An aneurysm in which blood enters the arterial wall and separates the layers; usually involves the aorta
dyslipidemia Disorder in the serum lipid levels, which is an important factor in development of atherosclerosis; includes hyperlipidemia (high lipids), hypercholesterolemia (high cholesterol), and hypertriglyceridemia (high triglycerides)
dyspnea Difficult or labored breathing (-pnea)
edema Swelling of body tissues caused by the presence of excess fluid; causes include cardiovascular disturbances, kidney failure, inflammation, and malnutrition
embolism Obstruction of a blood vessel by a blood clot or other matter carried in the circulation
embolus A mass carried in the circulation; usually a blood clot, but also may be air, fat, bacteria, or other solid matter from within or from outside the body
fibrillation Spontaneous, quivering, and ineffectual contraction of muscle fibers, as in the atria or the ventricles
heart block An interference in the electrical conduction system of the heart resulting in arrhythmia
heart failure A condition caused by the inability of the heart to maintain adequate blood circulation
hemorrhoid A varicose vein in the rectum
hyptertension A condition of higher-than-normal blood pressure; essential (primary, idiopathic) hypertension has no known cause
ischemia Local deficiency of blood supply caused by circulatory obstruction (root: hem/o)
infarct An area of localized tissue necrosis (death) resulting from a blockage or a narrowing of the artery that supplies the area
murmur An abnormal heart sound
myocardial infarction (MI) Localized necrosis (death) of cardiac muscle tissue resulting from blockage or narrowing of the coronary artery that supplies that area; myocardial infarction is usually caused by formation of a thrombus (clot) in a vessel
occlusion A closing off or obstruction, as of a vessel
patent ductus arteriosus Persistence of the ductus arteriosus after birth; the ductus arteriosus is a vessel that connects the pulmonary artery to the descending aorta in the fetus to bypass the lungs
phlebitis Inflammation of a vein
plaque A patch; with regard to the cardiovascular system, a deposit of fatty material and other substances on a vessel wall that impedes blood flow and may block the vessel; atheromatous plaque
rheumatic heart disease Damage to heart valves after infection with a type of Streptococcus (group A hemolytic Streptococcus); the antibodies produced in response to the infection produce valvular scarring usually involving the mitral valve
septal defect An opening in the septum between the atria or ventricles; a common cause is persistence of the foramen ovale, an opening between the atria that bypasses the lungs in fetal circulation
shock Circulatory failure resulting in an inadequate blood supply to the tissues; cardiogenic shock is caused by heart failure; hypovolemic shock is caused by a loss of blood volume; septic shock is caused by bacterial infection
stenosis Constriction or narrowing of an opening
stroke See cerebrovascular accident
syncope A temporary loss of consciousness caused by inadequate blood flow to the brain; fainting
tachycardia An abnormally rapid heart rate, usually over 100 bpm
thrombophlebitis Inflammation of a vein associated with formation of a blood clot
thrombosis Development of a blood clot within a vessel
thrombus A blood clot that forms within a blood vessel (root: thromb/o)
varicose vein A twisted and swollen vein resulting from breakdown of the valves, pooling of blood, and chronic dilatation of the vessel (root: varic/o); also called varix or varicosity
ablation Removal or destruction. In cardiac ablation, a catheter is used to destroy a portion of the heart's conduction pathway to correct an arrhythmia
angioplasty A procedure that reopens a narrowed vessel and restores blood flow; commonly accomplished by surgically removing plaque, inflating a balloon within the vessel, or installing a device (stent) to keep the vessel open
artificial pacemaker A battery-operated device that generates electrical impulses to regulate the heartbeat; it may be external or implanted, may be designed to respond to need, and may have the capacity to prevent tachycardia
cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) Restoration of cardiac output and pulmonary ventilation after cardiac arrest using artificial respiration and chest compression or cardiac massage
cardioversion Correction of an abnormal cardiac rhythm; may be accomplished pharmacologically, with antiarrhythmic drugs, or by application of electric current
coronary angiography Radiographic study of the coronary arteries after introduction of an opaque dye by means of a catheter threaded through blood vessels into the heart
coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) Surgical creation of a shunt to bypass a blocked coronary artery; the aorta is connected to a point past the obstruction with another vessel or a piece of another vessel, usually the left internal mammary artery or part of the leg's saphenous vein
coronary calcium scan Method for visualizing vessel-narrowing calcium deposits in coronary arteries; useful for diagnosing coronary artery disease in people at moderate risk or those who have undiagnosed chest pain; also known as a heart scan
creatine kinase MB (CK-MB) Enzyme released in increased amounts from cardiac muscle cells following myocardial infarction (MI); serum assays help diagnose MI and determine the extent of muscle damage
CT angiography (CTA) Computed tomography scan visualizes vessels in the heart; requires only a small amount of dye injected into the arm; can rule out blocked coronary arteries that may cause a myocardial infarction in people with chest pain or abnormal stress tests
defibrillation Stops fibrillation by delivering a brief electric shock to the heart; it may be delivered to the surface of the chest by an automated external defibrillator, or directly into the heart through wire leads, using an implantable cardioverter defibrillator
echocardiography A noninvasive method that uses ultrasound to visualize internal cardiac structures
lipoprotein A compound of protein with lipid; lipoproteins are classified according to density as very low-density (VLDL), low-density (LDL), and high-density (HDL); relatively higher levels of HDLs have been correlated with cardiovascular health
percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA) Dilation of a sclerotic blood vessel by means of a balloon catheter inserted into the vessel and then inflated to flatten plaque against the arterial wall
stent A small metal device in the shape of a coil or slotted tube that is placed inside an artery to keep the vessel open after balloon angioplasty
stress test Evaluation of physical fitness by continuous ECG monitoring during exercise; in a thallium stress test, a radioactive isotope of thallium is administered to trace blood flow through the heart during exercise
troponin (Tn) A protein in muscle cells that regulates contraction; increased serum levels, primarily in the forms TnT and TnI, indicate recent myocardial infarction (MI)
appendix A small, finger-like mass of lymphoid tissue attached to the first part of the large intestine
lymph The thin, plasma-like fluid that drains from the tissues and is transported in lymphatic vessels (root: lymph/o)
lymph node A small mass of lymphoid tissue along the path of a lymphatic vessel that filters lymph (root: lymphaden/o)
lymphatic system The system that drains fluid and proteins from the tissues and returns them to the bloodstream; this system also participates in immunity and aids in absorption of fats from the digestive tract
Peyer patches Aggregates of lymphoid tissue in the lining of the intestine
right lymphatic duct The lymphatic duct that drains fluid from the body's upper right side
spleen A large reddish-brown organ in the upper left region of the abdomen; it filters blood and destroys old red blood cells (root: splen/o)
thoracic duct The lymphatic duct that drains fluid from the upper left side of the body and all of the lower body; left lymphatic duct
thymus A lymphoid organ in the upper part of the chest beneath the sternum; it functions in immunity (root: thym/o)
tonsil Small mass of lymphoid tissue located in region of the throat (pharynx)
lymph/o lymph, lymphatic system
lymphaden/o lymph node
lymphangi/o lymphatic vessel
splen/o spleen
thym/o thymus
tonsil/o tonsil
lymphadenitis Inflammation and enlargement of lymph nodes, usually as a result of infection
lymphangitis Inflammation of lymphatic vessels as a result of bacterial infection; appears as painful red streaks under the skin
lymphedema Swelling of tissue with lymph caused by obstruction or excision of lymphatic vessels
lymphoma Any neoplastic disease of lymphoid tissue
apical pulse Pulse felt or heard over the heart's apex; it is measured in the fifth left intercostal space (between the ribs) about 8 to 9 cm from the midline
cardiac output The amount of blood pumped from the right or left ventricle per minute
Korotkoff sounds Arterial sounds heard with a stethoscope ruing determination of blood pressure with a cuff
perfusion The passage of fluid, such as blood, through an organ or tissue
precordium The anterior region over the heart and the lower part of the thorax; adjective: precordial
pulse pressure The difference between systolic and diastolic pressure
stroke volume The amount of blood ejected by the left ventricle with each beat
Valsalva maneuver Bearing down, as in childbirth or defecation, by attempting to exhale forcefully with the nose and throat closed; this action has an effect on the cardiovascular system
bruit An abnormal sound heard in auscultation
cardiac tamponade Pathologic accumulation of fluid in the pericardial sac; may result from pericarditis or injury to the heart or great vessels
ectopic beat A heartbeat that originates from some part of the heart other than the SA node
extrasystole Premature heart contraction that occurs separately from the normal beat and originates from a part of the heart other than the SA node
flutter Very rapid (200-300 bpm) but regular contractions, as in the atria or the ventricles
hypotension A condition of lower-than-normal blood pressure
intermittent claudication Pain in a muscle during exercise caused by inadequate blood supply; the pain disappears with rest
mitral valve prolapse Movement of the mitral valve cusps into the left atrium when the ventricles contract
occlusive vascular disease Arteriosclerotic disease of the vessels, usually peripheral vessels
palpitation A sensation of abnormally rapid or irregular heartbeat
pitting edema Edema that retains the impression of a finger pressed firmly into the skin
polyarteritis nodosa Potentially fatal collagen disease causing inflammation of small visceral arteries; symptoms depend on the organ affected
Raynaud disease A disorder characterized by abnormal constriction of peripheral vessels in the arms and legs on exposure to cold
regurgitation A backward flow, such as the backflow of blood through a defective valve
stasis Stoppage of normal flow, as of blood or urine; blood stasis may lead to dermatitis and ulcer formation
subacute bacterial endocarditis (SBE) Bacterial growth in a heart or valves previously damaged by rheumatic fever
tetralogy of Fallot A combination of four congenital heart abnormalities: pulmonary artery stenosis, interventricular septal defect, displacement of the aorta to the right, and right ventricular hypertrophy
thromboangiitis obliterans Inflammation and thrombus formation resulting in occlusion of small vessels, especially in the legs; most common in young men and correlated with heavy smoking; clotting of leg vessels may lead to gangrene of the feet; also called Buerger disease
vegetation Irregular bacterial outgrowths on the heart valves; associated with rheumatic fever
Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome (WPW) A cardiac arrhythmia consisting of tachycardia and a premature ventricular beat caused by an alternative conduction pathway
cardiac catheterization Passage of a catheter into the heart through a vessel to inject a contrast medium for imaging, diagnosis, obtaining samples, or measuring pressure
central venous pressure (CVP) Pressure in the superior vena cava
cineangiocardiography The photographic recording of fluoroscopic images of the heart and large vessels using motion picture techniques
Doppler echocardiography An imaging method used to study the rate and pattern of blood flow
Holter monitor A portable device that can record from 24 hours to one month of an individual's ECG readings during normal activity
homocysteine An amino acid in the blood that at higher-than-normal levels is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease
phlebotomist Technician who specializes in drawing blood
phonocardiography Electronic recording of heart sounds
plethysmography Measurement of changes in the size of a part based on the amount of blood contained in or passing through it; impedance plethysmography measures changes in electrical resistance and is used in the diagnosis of deep vein thrombosis
pulmonary capillary wedge pressure (PCWP) Pressure measured by a catheter in a branch of the pulmonary artery. It is an indirect measure of pressure in the left atrium
radionuclide heart scan Imaging of the heart after injection of a radioactive isotope; the PYP scan using 99mTc is used to test for myocardial infarction because the isotope is taken up by damaged tissue; the MUGA scan gives information on heart function
Swan-Ganz catheter A cardiac catheter with a balloon at the tip that is used to measure pulmonary arterial pressure; it is flow guided through a vein into the right side of the heart and then into the pulmonary artery
transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) Use of an ultrasound transducer placed endoscopically into the esophagus to obtain images of the heart
triglyceride Simple fat that circulates in the bloodstream
ventriculography X-ray study of the heart's ventricles after introduction of an opaque dye by means of a catheter
atherectomy Removal of atheromatous plaque from the lining of a vessel; may be done by open surgery or through the vessel's lumen
commissurotomy Surgical incision of a scarred mitral valve to increase the size of the valvular opening
embolectomy Surgical removal of an embolus
intraaortic balloon pump (IABP) A mechanical assist device that consists of an inflatable balloon pump inserted through the femoral artery into the thoracic aorta, inflating during diastole to improve coronary circulation and deflating before systole to allow blood ejection
ventricular assist device (VAD) A pump that takes over a ventricle's function in delivering blood into the pulmonary or systemic circuit; these devices are used to assist patients awaiting heart transplantation or those who are recovering from heart failure; most common is an LVAD
angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor A drug that lowers blood pressure by blocking the formation of angiotensin II, a substance that normally acts to increase blood pressure
angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB) A drug that blocks tissue receptors for angiotensin II; angiotensin II receptor antagonist
antiarrhythmic agent A drug that regulates the rate and rhythm of the heartbeat
beta-adrenergic blocking agent Drug that decreases the rate and strength of heart contractions; beta-blocker
calcium-channel blocker Drug that controls the rate and force of heart contraction by regulating calcium entrance into the cells
digitalis A drug that slows and strengthens heart muscle contractions
diuretic Drug that eliminates fluid by increasing the kidney's output of urine; lowered blood volume decreases the heart's workload
hypolipidemic agent Drug that lowers serum cholesterol
lidocaine A local anesthetic that is used intravenously to treat cardiac arrhythmias
loop diuretic Drug that increases urine output by inhibiting electrolyte reabsorption in the kidney nephrons (loops)
nitroglycerin A drug used in the treatment of angina pectoris to dilate coronary vessels
statins Drugs that act to lower lipids in the blood; the drug names end with -statin, such as lovastatin, pravastatin, and atorvastatin
streptokinase (SK) An enzyme used to dissolve blood clots
tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) A drug used to dissolve blood clots; it activates production of a substance (plasmin) in the blood that normally dissolves clots
vasodilator A drug that widens blood vessels and improves blood flow
ACE Angiotensin-converting enzyme
AED Automated external defibrillator
AF Atrial fibrillation
AMI Acute myocardial infarction
APC Atrial premature complex
AR Aortic regurgitation
ARB Angiotensin receptor blocker
AS Aortic stenosis; arteriosclerosis
ASCVD Arteriosclerotic cardiovascular disease
ASD Atrial septal defect
ASHD Arteriosclerotic heart disease
AT Atrial tachycardia
AV Atrioventricular
BBB Bundle branch block (left or right)
BP Blood pressure
bpm Beats per minute
CABG Coronary artery bypass graft
CAD Coronary artery disease
CCU Coronary/cardiac care unit
CHD Coronary heart disease
CHF Congestive heart failure
CK-MB Creatine kinase MB
CPR Cardiopulmonary resuscitation
CRP C-reactive protein
CTA Computed tomography angiography
CVA Cerebrovascular accident
CVD Cardiovascular disease
CVI Chronic venous insufficiency
CVP Central venous pressure
DOE Dyspnea on exertion
DVT Deep vein thrombosis
ECG (EKG) Electrocardiogram, electrocardiography
HDL High-density lipoprotein
hs-CRP High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (test)
HTN Hypertension
IABP Intraaortic balloon pump
ICD Implantable cardioverter defibrillator
IVCD Intraventricular conduction delay
JVP Jugular venous pulse
LAD Left anterior descending (coronary artery)
LAHB Left anterior hemiblock
LDL Low-density lipoprotein
LV Left ventricle
LVAD Left ventricular assist device
LVEDP Left ventricular end-diastolic pressure
LVH Left ventricular hypertrophy
MI Myocardial infarction
mm Hg Millimeters of mercury
MR Mitral regurgitation, reflux
MS Mitral stenosis
MUGA Multigated acquisition (scan)
MVP Mitral valve prolapse
MVR Mitral valve replacement
NSR Normal sinus rhythm
P Pulse
PAC Premature atrial contraction
PAP Pulmonary arterial pressure
PCI Percutaneous coronary intervention
PCWP Pulmonary capillary wedge pressure
PMI Point of maximal impulse
PSVT Paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia
PTCA Percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty
PVC Premature ventricular contraction
PVD Peripheral vascular disease
PYP Pyrophosphate (scan)
S1 First heart sound
S2 Second heart sound
SA Sinoatrial
SBE Subacute bacterial endocarditis
SK Streptokinase
SVT Supraventricular tachycardia
99mTc Technetium-99 m
TEE Transesophageal echocardiography
Tn Troponin
tPA Tissue plasminogen activator
VAD Ventricular assist device
VF, v fib Ventricular fibrillation
VLDL Very-low-density lipoprotein
VPC Ventricular premature complex
VSD Ventricular septal defect
VT Ventricular tachycardia
VTE Venous thromboembolism
WPW Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome
Created by: SeedyVampire