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  • abaxial
    Lying outside the axis of any body or part. Situated at the opposite extremity of the axis of a part.
  • Abbé condenser
    a system of two or three wide-angle, achromatic, convex, and planoconvex lenses that may be moved upward or downward beneath the stage of a microscope, thereby regulating the concentration of light (directly from a bulb or reflected from a mirror) that passes through the material to be examined on the stage.
  • Abbe flap
    triangular wedge of the lower lip (usually midline) transferred into the upper lip and vascularized by the labial artery.
  • Abbott artery
    an anomalous artery arising from the posteromedial proximal descending aorta, important during coarctation repair.
  • Abbott stain for spores
    spores are stained blue with alkaline methylene blue; bodies of the bacilli become pink with eosin counterstain.
  • ABC leads
    the leads for recording one kind of vectorcardiogram utilizing the Arrighi triangle; supplanted by XYZ leads.
  • ABC transporter proteins
    a superfamily of carrier proteins that bind two highly conserved ATP-binding cassettes and function in transporting peptides, sugars, polysaccharides, and ions across the cell membrane. Mutations in the gene that codes for one of these ABC transporter proteins is believed to be responsible for cystic fibrosis.

    See Also: cystic fibrosis, carrier protein

  • abcoulomb
    A unit of electrical charge equal to 10 coulombs. The charge that passes over a given surface in 1 second if a current of 1 abampere is flowing across the surface.
  • Abdomen

    Abdomen: The belly, that part of the body that contains all of the structures between the chest and the pelvis. The abdomen is separated anatomically from the chest by the diaphragm, the powerful muscle spanning the body cavity below the lungs. The abdomen includes a host of organs including the stomach, small intestine, colon, rectum, liver, spleen, pancreas, kidneys, appendix, gallbladder, and bladder. The word "abdomen" has a curious story behind it. It comes from the Latin "abdodere", to hide. The idea was that whatever was eaten was hidden in the abdomen.

  • abdomen obstipum
    obsolete rarely used term for deformity of the abdomen due to congenitally short rectus muscles.
  • Abdomen, acute

    Abdomen, acute:The abrupt (acute) onset of abdominal pain. A potential medical emergency, an acute abdomen may reflect a major problem with one of the organs in the abdomen such as the appendix (being inflammed = appendicitis), the gallbladder (inflammed = cholecystitis), the intestine (an ulcer that has perforated), the spleen (that has ruptured), etc. The term �acute abdomen� is medical shorthand. It has nonetheless come into common usage in medical parlance.

  • abdominal
    Relating to the abdomen.
  • Abdominal aneurysm

    Abdominal aneurysm: An aneurysm situated within the abdomen (belly). An aneurysm is a localized widening (dilatation) of an artery, vein, or the heart. At the area of an aneurysm, there is typically a bulge and the wall is weakened and may rupture. The word �aneurysm� comes from the Greek �aneurysma� meaning �a widening.� An aneurysm may involve the aorta, the largest artery in the body, as it courses down through the abdomen. Because of the great volume of blood flowing under high pressure in the aorta, rupture of an abdominal aortic aneurysm is a surefire catastrophe.

  • abdominal angina
    intermittent abdominal pain, frequently occurring at a fixed time after eating, caused by inadequacy of the mesenteric circulation resulting from arteriosclerosis or other arterial disease.

    Alternate names: intestinal angina

  • abdominal aorta
    the part of the descending aorta that is distal (inferior) to the aortic hiatus of the diaphragm, which occurs at the T-12 vertebral level.

    Alternate names: pars abdominalis aortaeTA, aorta abdominalis, abdominal part of descending aorta

  • abdominal aortic (nerve) plexus
    an autonomic plexus surrounding the abdominal aorta, directly continuous with the thoracic aortic plexus superiorly and continuing inferiorly to the bifurcation of the aorta as the superior hypogastric plexus.

    Alternate names: plexus nervosus aorticus abdominalisTA

  • Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA)

    Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA): A ballooning or widening of the main artery (the aorta) as it courses down through the abdomen. At the point of the aneurysm, the aneurysm usually measures 3 cm or more in diameter. The aneurysm weakens the wall of the aorta and can end in the aorta rupturing with catastrophic consequences. As the diameter of the aorta increases, the chances of an AAA rupturing rise. A measurement of 5 cm is often used to recommend surgery. Persons with AAA tend to be 60 or over. Men are 5 times more likely than women to have an AAA.

  • abdominal apoplexy
    mesenteric hemorrhage, thrombosis, or embolus involving the mesenteric or abdominal blood vessels.
  • abdominal aura
    epileptic aura characterized by abdominal discomfort, including nausea, malaise, pain, and hunger; some phenomena reflect ictal autonomic dysfunction.

    See Also: aura1

  • abdominal ballottement
    palpation of the abdomen to detect excessive amounts of fluid (ascites) by causing organs to bob up and down in the fluid milieu.
  • Abdominal cavity

    Abdominal cavity: The space between the abdominal wall and the spine. The abdominal cavity is hardly an empty space. It contains a number of crucial organs including the stomach, small intestine, colon, rectum, liver, spleen, pancreas, kidneys, appendix, gallbladder, and bladder.

  • abdominal compartment syndrome
    a constellation consisting of cardiovascular, pulmonary, and renal compromise produced by increased intraabdominal pressure from bleeding (intraabdominal or retroperitoneal), ileus, peritonitis, or insufflation.
  • abdominal fissure
    congenital failure of the ventral body wall to close.

    See Also: celosomia, gastroschisis

  • abdominal fistula
    a fistulous passage connecting one of the abdominal viscera to the external surface.
  • Abdominal guarding

    Abdominal guarding: Tensing of the abdominal wall muscles to guard inflamed organs within the abdomen from the pain of pressurepon upon them. The tensing is detected when the abdomen wall is pressed. Guarding is a characteristic finding in the physical examination for an abruptly painful abdomen (an acute abdomen) with inflammation of the inner abdominal (peritoneal) surface due, for example, to appendicitis or diverticulitis. The tensed muscles of the abdominal wall automatically go into spasm to keep the tender underlying tissues from being touched.

  • abdominal hernia
    a hernia protruding through or into any part of the abdominal wall.

    Alternate names: laparocele

  • Abdominal hysterectomy

    Abdominal hysterectomy: Surgical removal of the uterus (a hysterectomy) done through an incision made in the abdominal wall. As opposed to a vaginal hysterectomy in which the incision is made within the vagina.

  • abdominal hysteropexy
    attachment of the uterus to the anterior abdominal wall.
  • abdominal hysterotomy
    transabdominal incision into the uterus.

    Alternate names: abdominohysterotomy

  • abdominal migraine
    migraine in children accompanied by paroxysmal abdominal pain. This must be distinguished from similar symptoms requiring surgical attention. a disorder that causes intermittent abdominal pain and is believed to be related to migraine; abdominal migraine has some of the features of migraine, there may be a strong family history of migraine headaches, and the condition may be relieved by sleep; however, a headache may not be present. The diagnosis depends on excluding other causes of abdominal pain.
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