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Body Structure Terms

ascites Abnormal accumulation of fluid in the abdominal cavity.
edema Abnormal accumulation of fluid within tissue spaces.
adhesion Abnormal fibrous band that holds or binds together tissues that are normally separated.
mycosis Any fungal infection in or on the body.
excision Biopsy in which the entire lesion is removed.
incisional Biopsy in which only a small sample of the lesion is removed.
inflammation Body defense against injury, infection, or allergy marked by redness, swelling, heat, pain, and sometimes, loss of function.
organelle Cellular structure that provides a specialized function, such as the nucleus (reproduction), robosomes (protein synthesis), Golgi apparatus (removal of material from the cell), and lysosomes (digestion).
PET (positron emission testing) Computed tomography records the positrons (positive charged particles) emitted from a radiopharmaceutical to produce a cross-sectional image of metabolic activity of body tissues to determine the presence of disease.
gangrene Death and decay of soft tissue, usually caused by ciculatory obstruction, trauma, or infection.
infusion therapy Delivery of fluids directly into the blood stream via a vein for treating various disorders; also called IV therapy.
cauterize Destruction of tissue by electricity, freezing, heat, or corrosive chemicals.
inspection General observation of the patient as a hole progressing to specific body areas.
palpation Gentle application of the hands to a specific structure or body area to determine size, consistency, texture, symmetry, and tenderness of underlying structures.
US (ultrasound) High-frequency sound waves (ultrasound) are directed at soft tissue and reflected as "echoes" to produce an image on a monitor of an internal body structure; also called ultrasound, sonography, and echo.
perforation Hole that completely penetrates a structure.
CT (computed tomography) Imaging technique in which an x-ray emitter rotates around the area to be scanned and a computer measures the intensity of transmitted x-rays from different angles; formerly called computerized axial tomography.
I & D (incision and drainage) Incision made to allow the free flow or withdrawal of fluids from a wound or cavity.
peritonitis Inflammation of the peritoneum, the serous membrane that surrounds the abdominal cavity and covers its organs.
blood chemistry Laboratory test, usually performed on serum, to evaluate various substances to determine whether they fall within a normal range.
auscultation Listening to the heart, bowel and lungs with or without a stethoscope to assess the presence and quality of sounds.
DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) Molecule that holds genetic information capable of replicating and producing an exact copy whenever the cell divides.
diaphragm Muscular wall that divides the thoracic cavity from the abdominopelvic cavity.
CBC (complete blood count) Panel of blood tests used as a broad screening test for anemias, infections, and other diseases.
febrile Pertaining to a fever; also called pyretic.
suppuration Producing or associated with the generation of pus.
hernia Protrusion of any organ through the structure that normally contains it.
SPECT (single-photon emission computed tomography) Radiological technique that integrates computed tomography and a radioactive material (tracer).
ablation Removal of a part, pathway, or function by surgery, chemical destruction, electrocautery, freezing, or radio frequency.
biopsy Removal of a representative tissue sample from a body site for microscopic examination, usually to establish a diagnosis.
resection Removal of part or all of a structure, organ, or tissue.
curettage Scraping of a body cavity with a spoon-shaped instrument called a curette.
assessment techniques Sequence of procedures designed to evaluate the health status of a patient.
organ-disease panels Series of blood tests used to evaluate a specific organ (liver panel) or disease (anemia panel).
chromatin Structural component of the nucleus, composed of nucleic acids and proteins.
rupture Sudden breaking or bursting of a structure or organ.
metabolism Sum of all physical and chemical changes that take place in a cell or an organism.
anastomosis Surgical joining of two ducts, vessels, or bowel segments to allow flow from one to another.
revision Surgical procedure used to replace or compensate for a previously implanted device or correct an undesirable result or effect of a previous surgery.
percussion Tapping a structure with the hand or fingers to assess consistency and the presence or absence of fluids within the underlying structure.
nuclear scan Technique in which a radioactive material (radiopharmaceutical) called a tracer is introduced into the body (inhaled, ingested, or injected) and a specialized camera (gamma camera) is used to produce images of organs and structures.
fluoroscopy Technique in which x-rays are directed through the body to a fluorescent screen that displays internal structures in continuous motion.
radiography Technique in which x-rays are passed through the body or area and captured on a film to generate an image; also called an x-ray.
MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) Technique that uses radio waves and a strong magnetic field, rather than an x-ray beam, to produce highly detailed, multiplanar, cross-sectional views of soft tissues.
chromosome Threadlike structures within the nucleus composed of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) that carries hereditary information encoded in genes.
laser surgery Use of a high intensity laser light beam to remove diseased tissues, stop bleeding blood vessels, or for cosmetic purposes.
endoscopy Visual examination of a body cavity or canal using a specialized lighted instrument called an endoscope.
sepsis Pathological state, usually febrile, resulting from the presence of microorganisims or their products in the bloodstream.
Created by: Jessica Longboat