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Medical Dictionary     W
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  • W
    Symbol for tungsten; watt; tryptophan; tryptophanyl.
  • W-arch
    a fixed maxillary expansion device attached to the lingual part of the molars, with either bilateral or unilateral extension arms.
  • W-plasty
    Surgery to alter the direction of a malaligned scar that is oriented perpendicular to the direction of regional skin creases to relieve a bandlike contracture and improve scar quality. The edges of the scar are excised as s series of angled cuts resembling multiple Ws; closure reorients the original scar.
  • W.r.
    Abbreviation for Wassermann reaction.
  • Waardenburg syndrome
    disorder characterized by lateral displacement of inner canthi (dystopia canthorum), broad nasal root, heterochromia iridis, sensory hearing impairment, white forelock, and synophrys; autosomal dominant inheritance with type 1 distinguished from type 2 by the presence of dystopia canthorum. Types 1 and 3 are caused by mutation in the PAX3 gene on chromosome 2q, whereas some cases of type 2 are caused by mutation in the microphthalmia transcription factor gene (MITF) on 3p. Type 4 is caused by mutations of EDNB on 13q, EDN3 on 20q, or SOX10 on 22q.
  • Waardenburg type 4 syndrome gene
    mutation of gene responsible for some cases of the disorder; located on 13q22; gene encodes a protein required for development of early neural crest-derived progenitor cells.
  • Waardenburg types 1 and 3 syndrome gene
    mutations of the gene are responsible for Waardenburg types 1 and 3 syndromes; located at 2q35; gene encodes a DNA-binding protein that may regulate the expression of other genes; mutations cause neural crest-derived melanocyte deficiency.
  • Wachstein-Meissel stain for calcium-magnesium-ATPase
    procedure similar to Gomori nonspecific acid phosphatase stain, except that incubation is carried out with ATP as substrate at neutral pH; enzyme activity is generally demonstrated at cell membranes.
  • Wada test
    unilateral internal carotid injection of amobarbital to determine the laterality of speech; injection on the dominant side causes transient aphasia or mutism; used prior to surgical treatment of epilepsy.
  • wadding
    Carded cotton or wool in sheets, used for surgical dressing. Fibrous material used in packing a firearm shell, often found in gunshot wounds inflicted at close range.
  • waddingtonian homeostasis
  • waddling gait
    rolling gait in which the weight-bearing hip is not stabilized; it bulges outward with each step, while the opposite side of the pelvis drops, resulting in alternating lateral trunk movements; due to gluteus medius muscle weakness, and seen with muscular dystrophies, among other disorders.

    Alternate names: waddle

  • wafer
    A thin sheet of dried flour paste used to enclose a powder. The wafer is moistened and folded over the drug, so that it can be swallowed without taste.
  • WAGR syndrome
    acronym denoting Wilms tumor, aniridia, genitourinary malformations, and mental retardation.
  • Wagstaffe
    William, English surgeon, 1843–1910.
  • waist
    The portion of the trunk between the ribs and the pelvis.
  • waist-hip ratio
    ratio of the abdominal circumference at the navel to maximum hip and buttocks circumference.
  • waiter's cramp
    an occupational dystonia characterized by spasm of the back muscles and dominant arm in people who wait tables.
  • Walcher position
    obsolete term for a supine position of the parturient woman, in which the lower extremities fall over the edge of the table.
  • Waldenström macroglobulinemia
    macroglobulinemia occurring in old people, characterized by proliferation of cells resembling lymphocytes or plasma cells in the bone marrow, anemia, increased sedimentation rate, and hyperglobulinemia with a narrow peak in γ-globulin or β2-globulin at about 19 S units. The spleen, liver, or lymph nodes are often enlarged with frequent purpura or mucosal bleeding.

    Alternate names: hyperglobulinemic purpura, Waldenström purpura, Waldenström syndrome

  • Waldenström test
    a test for porphobilinogen or urobilinogen in urine that uses Ehrlich diazo agent; a red color is produced if either of the two substances is present in the urine.
  • Waldeyer
  • Waldeyer fossae
  • Waldeyer glands
    coil glands near the margins of the eyelids.
  • Waldeyer sheath
    the tubular space between the bladder wall and the intramural portion of the ureter as it courses obliquely through this structure; actually a space and not a true sheath.

    Alternate names: Waldeyer space

  • walk
    To move on foot. The characteristic manner in which one moves on foot.

    See Also: gait

  • walk-through angina
    a circumstance in which, despite continuing activity such as walking, the pain of angina pectoris diminishes or disappears.
  • Walker chart
    a system for plotting the relative fetal and placental sizes.
  • Walker tractotomy
    a mesencephalic spinothalamic tractotomy.
  • Walker-A sequence and Walker-B box
    specific distally related sequences in the α- and β-subunits of ATP synthase as well as those of myosin, kinases, and other ATP-requiring enzymes contributing to an adenine nucleotide binding fold in both ATP synthase subunits.
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