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Key Terms

Chapter 2

TermDefinition
Aerobe A microorganism that needs oxygen to live and grow
Anaerobe A microorganism that grows best in the absence of oxygen
Antiseptic An agent that inhibits the growth of or kills microorganisms
Cilia Slender, hairlike projections that constantly beat toward the outside to remove microorganisms from the body
Hand hygiene The process of cleaning or sanitizing the hands
Infection The condition in which the body, or part of it, is invaded by a pathogen
Medical asepsis Practices that are employed to inhibit the growth and hinder the transmission of pathogenic microorganisms to prevent the spread of infection
Microorganism A microscopic plant or animal
Nonintact skin Skin that has a break in the surface. It includes, but is not limited to, abrasions, cuts, hangnails, paper cuts, and burns
Nonpathogen A microorganism that does not normally produce disease
Opportunistic infection An infection that results from a defective immune system that cannot defend the body from pathogens normally found in the environment
Optimum growth temperature The temperature at which an organism grows best
Parenteral Taken into the body through piercing of the skin barrier or mucous membranes, such as through needlesticks, human bites, cuts, and abrasions
Pathogen A disease-producing microorganism
Postexposure prophylaxis Treatment administered to an individual after exposure to an infectious disease to prevent the disease
Regulated medical waste medical waste that poses a threat to health and safety
Resident flora Harmless, nonpathogrnic microorganisms that normally reside on the skin and usually do not cause disease. Also known as normal flora
Transient flora Microorganisms that reside on the superficial skin layers and are picked up in the course of daily activities. They are often pathogenic but can be removed easily from the skin by sanitizing the hands.
Created by: Tangeladenise