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Glossary - C

Displaying glossary terms beginning with the letter C: 51 - 100 of 224 in total
cation
A positively charged ion; cations in the body include sodium, potassium, and magnesium.
cauda equina
A bundles of nerve roots, that look like a horse's tail, located at the end of the spinal cord.
causalgia
Intense, long-lasting burning pain usually caused by damage to a peripheral nerve.
cavity
A hole in the tooth caused by advanced decay.
CBC
Abbreviation for complete blood count?tests run on a blood sample to provide information on red cells, white cells, and platelets.
CCU
Coronary care unit; A ward in a hospital that provides specialized care and extensive monitoring for patients with heart problems.
celiac disease
A disease characterized by damage to the small intestine caused by an oversensitivity to gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye, and barley. Celiac disease can interfere with the proper absorption of nutrients from food.
Related health topics: Glomerulonephritis
celiac plexus
A network of nerves in the upper abdomen; medication is sometimes injected here as part of a therapy to ease pain called a nerve block.
cell
The basic building block of all living organisms.
cell senescence
The end stage in the life of a cell when the cell can no longer divide.
cell-mediated immunity
A type of immune response mounted against viruses, certain types of parasites, and perhaps cancer cells.
cementum
The layer of tooth material that covers the root.
central (brain) fatigue
A lack of concentration or alertness as well as a sense of lethargy and loss of motivation; involves the central nervous system.
central nervous system
The brain, brainstem, and spinal cord.
Related health topics: Hemophilia, Parkinson's Disease
central sleep apnea
A disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops during sleep, because the brain doesn't properly signal the muscles that control breathing.
cerebellum
The part of the brain that controls coordinated movement.
cerebral aneurysm
A weakening and ballooning of the wall of an artery in the brain.
cerebral angiography
An invasive imaging procedure used to make detailed x-ray pictures of the blood vessels in the brain; dye is injected into the carotid arteries to highlight the blood vessels on x-rays.
cerebral cortex
The part of the brain involved in all forms of conscious experience, including thought, language, and memory.
Related health topics: Generalized Anxiety Disorder
cerebral hemorrhage
Bleeding in the brain caused by the rupture of a blood vessel; another term for hemorrhagic stroke.
cerebral infarction
A type of stroke caused when a blood vessel that supplies blood to the brain is blocked by a blood clot.
cerebrovascular
Pertaining to the blood vessels in the brain.
cerebrovascular accident
The medical term for a stroke.
cerumen
Earwax; a substance that helps keep dirt out of the ear and lubricates the skin in the ear.
cervical radiculopathy
A pinched nerve, causing sharp pain, tingling, and numbness in the areas served by the nerve.
cervical spine
The part of the spine located in the neck and consisting of the top seven vertebrae.
cervical spondyloarthropathy
Inflammatory arthritis involving the neck portion of the spine.
cervicogenic headache
Headache related to neck problems. Also called cervical headache.
challenge testing
A way of testing for food allergy, usually in double-blind experiments in which neither patient nor doctor knows which food is taken in pill form.
chemical peel
A chemical solution applied to the skin to cause it to blister and peel, revealing a new layer of skin; treatment is used to improve the appearance of the skin, reducing lines, wrinkles, age spots, and other problems.
chemonucleolysis
A treatment for low back pain that involves injecting the enzyme chymopapain into a herniated disk.
chemoprevention
Using drugs or chemicals to prevent cancer.
chemotherapy
The use of chemicals to treat disease; often used to destroy cancer cells.
Cheyne-Stokes respiration
Abnormal breathing where cycles of deep, labored breathing are followed by cycles of weak breathing that can result in a total, temporary lack of airflow.
chiropractor
Someone who treats disease by manipulation and adjustment of body structures, often the spine.
chlorophyllin
A chemical found in green, leafy vegetables thought to help prevent cancer.
chlorosis
Severe iron-deficiency characterized by a yellow-green tinge to the skin.
cholagogue
A substance that causes the gallbladder to squeeze, increasing the discharge of bile.
cholecystokinin
A hormone that signals the gallbladder to contract, releasing bile, and causes the pancreas to release enzymes used in digestion.
choleretic
An agent that promotes bile production.
cholesterol
A waxy, fat-like substance produced by the liver and found in all food from animal sources; an essential component of body cells and a precursor of bile acids and some hormones.
cholinergic neuron
A nerve cell that produces acetylcholine.
chondrocalcinosis
Arthritis caused by calcium crystals.
chondrocyte
A cartilage cell.
chondromalacia
A painful condition caused by irritation to or wearing away of the cartilage on the underside of the knee cap; known as runner's knee.
choroid
A thin layer of blood vessels and connective tissue between the white of the eye (sclera) and the retina.
chromosome
A threadlike structure, found in the nucleus of each cell, that carries almost all of a cell's genes.
chronic
Any condition that lasts a long time or recurs over time.
chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)
A disorder of ongoing, severe tiredness that interferes with a person's ability to function well, isn't improved with rest, and isn't caused by another illness.
chronic kidney disease
Any type of kidney disease that lasts longer than three months and impairs kidney function.