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  GLOSSARY F-Z

fasciculations: small and very localized involuntary sequences of muscle twitches; rapid muscle contractions and relaxations; not to be confused with seizures or grand mal
gastrointestinal: refers to the stomach and intestines
grand mal: tonic-clonic seizures; a type of generalized seizure that affects the entire brain and causes massive muscular spasmic convulsions (see seizures)
hemolytic: causing hemolysis, dissolution of red blood cells
histamine: an organic nitrogen compound that is released during allergic reactions that triggers an inflammatory response. It also regulates other physiological responses and acts as a neurotransmitter.
histaminoid: similar to histamine
hypotension: excessively low arterial blood pressure; causes include blood loss, infection, poisoning, heart failure, neurological injury, endocrine disorders and medications
inflammation: redness, swelling, pain or a feeling of heat in an area of the body; a protective reaction to injury, disease or irritation of the tissues
laceration: a jagged wound or cut
lingual: relating to or resembling the tongue
localized: restricted to the site of origin, without evidence of spread
maxilla: the principal bone of the upper jaw (the bone of the lower jaw is the mandible)
mimicry/mimetic: protective resemblance; the resemblance that certain animals and plants exhibit to other animals and plants or to the natural objects among which they live; a characteristic that serves as their chief means of protection against enemies; imitation; mimesis; mimetism
morphology: science of the form and structure of organisms (plants, animals and other forms of life)
mydriasis: a long-continued or excessive dilation of the pupil of the eye
necrosis: tissue death, in which tissue typically turns black
necrotic: relating to the death of cells or tissue as a result of injury or disease
neuromuscular: relating to the synapse or junction of the axon of a neuron and the motor end plate of a muscle; in vertebrates, the signal passes through the neuromuscular junction via a neurotransmitter, acetylcholine
paralysis: loss of ability to move all or part of the body
paresthesia: an abnormal sensation, such as burning, prickling, formication, etc; usually referred to as the feeling of “pins and needles”
pelagic: referring to any water in the sea that is not close to the bottom or near to the shore (the pelagic zone); from the Greek pélagos, which means “open sea”
planktonic: adjective form of plankton, which are a group of small, microscopic floating organisms
pneumatophore: one of the polyps of Physalia spp., which forms a gas-filled bladder that enables the organism to float along the ocean surface; also known as the marissa or sail
prokaryote: from the Greek pro (meaning “before”) and karyon (“nut” or “kernel”), meaning these cells have no real nucleus. They represent a more primordial form of life, less evolved than nucleated cells (eukaryotes).
protozoan: a large group of single-celled, usually microscopic, nucleated organisms
pruritus: an intense chronic itching sensation that can have various causes (allergies, infection, lymphoma, jaundice, etc.); poison ivy causes pruritus
rhabdomyolysis: disintegration of skeletal muscle
seizure: a convulsion; a sudden, involuntary movement of the muscles; typical of epileptic disorders
sessile: resting directly upon the main stem or branch, without a petiole or footstalk (as a sessile leaf or blossom)
sign: an entity that indicates another entity; in medicine, an indication of the existence of something; any objective evidence of a disease perceptible to the examiner (as opposed to a symptom)
symptom: an often subjective indication that a person has a condition or disease (examples of symptoms are headache, fever, fatigue, nausea, vomiting and pain)
systemic: affecting the entire body
Td, Tdap: refers to different combination vaccines that provide immunization against tetanus. Tdap includes immunological coverage against three infectious diseases: tetanus (T), diphtheria (D) and pertussis, also known as whooping cough (P). Td lacks the pertussis component.
thermostable: the quality of a substance to resist irreversible change in its chemical or physical structure at a high relative temperature
toxicology: a branch of biology and medicine concerned with the study of the adverse effects of chemicals on living organisms; study of the signs, symptoms, mechanisms of action and treatments of poisonings
toxinology: the specialized area of science that deals specifically with animal, plant and microbial toxins; a branch of biology and medicine concerned with the study of the adverse effects of natural toxins or chemicals on living organisms
vasoactive:
exerting an effect on blood vessels

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