ABBOTT METHOD - For scoliosis of
the spine; traction is applied to produce overcorrection,
followed by casting.
ABDOMINAL MUSCLES - Important for support of the spine,
these muscles are the rectus abdominis, external oblique,
internal oblique, and transversus.
ABDUCTION - Movement away from midline of body in frontal
plane; applied to hip, shoulder, fingers, thumb, and
ABRASION - Any superficial scraping of skin tissue
or mucous membrane mechanically or through injury.
ABSCESS - Localized collection of pus in a cavity which
may form in any tissue.
ACHONDROPLASTIC STENOSIS - Increased vertebral thickness,
marked concavity of the vertebral body, and shortened
ACOUSTIC NEURINOMAS - Benign tumor of the hearing nerve
(eighth nerve). A progressively enlarging, benign tumor,
usually within the internal auditory canal or hearing
ACROMEGALY - Disorder marked by progressive enlargement
of the head, face, hands, feet, and thorax, due to the
excessive secretion of growth hormone.
ACTION TREMOR - A type of tremor that occurs during
voluntary movements, such as lifting a cup to one's
ACTIVA TREMOR CONTROL THERAPY - The therapy uses an
implanted device to deliver mild electrical stimulation
to block the brain signals that cause tremor. The therapy
stimulates the target nuclei in the thalamus via an
insulated wire lead with electrodes that are surgically
implanted in the brain and connected to a pulse generator
that is implanted near the collarbone. The stimulation
level can be adjusted to get the most possible tremor
control with minimal side effects.
ACUTE - Severe, for a short time.
ADENOCARCINOMA - Cancer arising from secretory cells,
often in a gland. Breast and pancreatic cancers are
ADENOMA - A benign growth formed of glandular tissue.
ADOLESCENT SCOLIOSIS - Lateral curvature of the spine
occurring during adolescence.
ADULT SCOLIOSIS - Scoliosis occuring after skeletal
AEBI, ETTER, AND COSICA - Anterior approach to inferior
C-2 to fractured dens with screws.
AEDs - Antiepileptic drugs.
AFFERENT NEURON - Transmitting impulses to the central
AGNOSIA - Absence of the ability to recognize the form
and nature of persons and things.
AGRAPHIA - Loss of the power of writing due either
to muscular incoordination or to an inability to phrase
ALAR DYSGENESIS - Abnormality in development of the
ALBEE - Fusion of the spine using grafts across the
spinous processes in spondylolisthesis.
ALLOGRAFT BONE - Sterile bone derived from another
human which is used for grafting procedures.
AMAUROSIS - Loss of vision without discoverable lesion
in the eye structures or optic nerve. Amaurosis fugax
- temporary blindness occurring in short periods.
AMENORRHEA - Absence of the menses due to causes other
than pregnancy or advancing age.
AMNESIA - Loss of memory caused by brain damage or
by severe emotional trauma.
ANALGESIA - Loss of sensibility to pain, loss of response
to a painful stimulus.
ANAPLASIA - In the case of a body cell, a reversion
to a more primitive condition. A term used to denote
the alteration in cell character which constitutes malignancy.
ANASTOMOSIS - A communication, direct or indirect:
A joining together. In the nervous system a jointing
of nerves or blood vessels.
ANESTHESIOLOGIST - Physician who administers pain-killing
medications during surgery.
ANENCEPHALY - Absence of the greater part of the brain,
often with skull deformity.
ANESTHESIA - Loss of sensation of a body part; or of
the body when induced by the administration of a drug.
ANESTHESIOLOGIST - Physician who administers pain-killing
medications during surgery.
ANEURYSM - Dilation of an artery, formed by a circumscribed
enlargement of its wall. Saccular (berry) aneurysm -
sac-like bulging on one side of an artery usually arising
at an arterial branching.
ANGIOGRAM - A study which shows the blood vessels leading
to and in the brain by injecting a dye or contrast substance
through a catheter placed in the artery in the leg.
ANGIOMA - A tumor whose cells tend to form blood vessels
(hemangioma) or lymph vessels (lymphangioma).
ANGIOGRAPHY - Radiography of blood vessels using the
injection of material opaque to x-rays to give better
definition to the vessels.
ANISOSPONDYLY - Different abnormal shapes of the vertebral
ANKYLOSING SPINAL HYPEROSTOSIS - Arthritic disorder
in which bridgingosteophytes located anteriorly and
posteriorly on the vertebral body bind two or more vertebrae
together; Forestier disease.
ANKYLOSING SPONDYLITIS - stiffening or fixation of
the vertebra; an inflammatory joint disease mainly affecting
the spine hips, and pelvis.
ANNULUS FIBROSUS - The outer, fibrous, ring-like portion
of an intervertebral disc.
ANOREXIA - Loss of appetite; a condition marked by
loss of appetite leading to weight loss.
ANOSMIC - Without the sense of smell.
ANOXIA - Total lack of oxygen supply.
ANTERIOR - Front of the body or situated nearer the
front of the body.
ANTERIOR APPROACH - When used to approach the cervical,
cervicodorsal, dorsal, and lumbar spines, it is designed
to provide sufficient surface for multiple segmental
spinal fusions; Hodgson, Roaf. For specific cervical
spinal explorations and fusions; Southwick and Robinson,
Bailey and Badgley, Whitesides and kelly, Henry (to
ANTERIOR CERVICAL DISCECTOMY - an operation where the
cervical spine is reached through a small incision in
the front of your neck. After the soft tissues of the
neck are separated, the intervertebral disc and bone
spurs are removed.
ANTERIOR CERVICAL DISCECTOMY WITH FUSION - an operation
performed on the upper spine to relieve pressure on
one or more nerve roots, or on the spinal cord. The
term is derived from the words anterior (front), cervical
(neck), and fusion (joining the vertebrae with a bone
ANTERIOR DISPLACEMENT - Forward movement of the superior
segment on the inferior one.
ANTERIOR LUMBAR INTERBODY FUSION (ALIF) - operation
where the lumbar spine is approached through an incision
in the abdomen. A portion of the affected disc space
is removed from the spine and replaced with an implant.
ANTERIOR SPINAL FUSION - Approaching the spine from
the front, the intervertable disc and/or vertebral body
is removed and bone graft is inserted. Some variations
of this procedure include the Smith-Robinson, Cloward
and dowel procedures.
ANTERIOR SPURRING - Ligament turning to bone on anterior
side of vertebral body.
ANTEROLATERAL - Situated or occurring in front of and
to the side.
ANEROLATERAL APPROACH - An approach to the dorsal spine
by rib resection to explore the spine anteriorly and
in some cases to do spinal fusions and decompressions
ANTI-COAGULANT - A medication that prevents coagulation
of the blood.
ANTIDIURETIC - An agent which reduces the output of
urine. Antidiuretic hormone (ADH) is formed in the hypothalamus
and stored in the posterior pituitary gland. Its secretion
reduces urine output.
AO FIXATEUR INTERNE - A posteriorly placed spinal fixation
APHASIA - Difficulty with, or loss of use of language,
in any of several ways including reading, writing or
speaking. Failure of understanding of the written, printed
or spoken word not related to intelligence but to specific
lesions in the brain.
APNEA - Cessation of respiration; inability to get
APOPLEXY - A sudden event. Often used as equivalent
ARACHNOID - Middle layer of membranes covering the
brain and spinal cord.
ARACHNOIDITIS - Inflammation of the arachnoid membrane,
most commonly seen within the spinal cord around the
spinal cord and cauda equina.
AREA - (Cortical) - A part of the brain having a special
function as in
- Motor a. - The cortical portion of the brain controlling
- Sensory a. - The cortical portion, controlling
ARNOLD-CHIARI MALFORMATION - A condition in which
there is displacement of the medulla and cerebellum
into the opening in the basilar part of the occipital
bone. It is one of the causes of hydrocephalus and is
usually accompanied by spina bifida and menigomyelocele.
ARTERIOGRAPHY - See angiography.
ARTERIOSCLEROSIS - Thickening and calcification of
the arterial wall with loss of elasticity and contractility.
ARTERIOVENOUS - Relating to both arteries and veins.
ARTERIOVENOUS MALFORMATION - Collection of blood vessels
with one or several abnormal communications between
arteries and veins which may cause hemorrhage or seizures.
ARTERY of ADAMKIEWICZ - An important source of blood
supply to the lower portion of the spine, usually occurring
at T-9 to T-11 level; however, not the only blood supply
to the cord at that level.
ARTHRALGIA - Joint pain.
ARTHRITIS - Inflammation of a joint usually characterized
by swelling, pain and restriction of motion.
ARTHRODESIS - The fusion of bones across a joint space,
thereby limiting or eliminating movement. It may occur
spontaneously or as a result of a surgical procedure,
such as fusion of the spine.
ARTHROPATHY - Any disease or disorder involving a joint.
ARTHROPLASTY - The surgical remodeling of a diseased
or damaged joint.
ARTHROSCOPE - An instrument inserted into it's joint
cavity to view the interior of a joint and correct certain
abnormalities. An arthroscope is an endoscope for use
in a joint.
ARTHROSCOPY - The procedure of visualizing the inside
of a joint by means of an arthroscope.
ARTICULAR - Pertaining to a joint.
ASTROCYTE - Cell which supports the nerve cells (neurons)
of the brain and spinal cord.
ASTROCYTOMA - Tumor within the substance of the brain
or spinal cord made up of astrocytes - often classified
from Grade I (slow-growing) to Grade III (rapid-growing).
ATAXIA - A loss of muscular coordination, abnormal
ATHETOSIS - A condition in which there is a succession
of slow, writhing, involuntary movements of the fingers
and hands, and sometimes of the toes and feet.
ATLANTO-AXIAL -Pertaining to the atlas and the axis;
denoting the joint between the first two cervical vertebrae.
ATLANTO-EPISTRPHIC - See atlanto-axial.
ATLANTO-OCCIPITAL - Relating to the atlas and the occipital
ATLANTO-ODONTOID - Relating to the atlas and the dens
of the axis.
ATLAS - First cervical vertebrae, articulating with
the occipital bone and rotating around the dens of the
ATONIC SEIZURE - Seizures that are characterized by
a sudden loss of muscle tone, causing the individual
to instantly drop to the floor, commonly known as "drop
ATROPHY - A wasting of the tissues of a body part.
AURA - Warning sign that people with epilepsy often
experience prior to the onset of a seizure, which may
consist of a strange taste, bad feeling, or tingling
AUTOGENOUS BONE - Bone originating from the same individual;
i.e., an individual's own bone.
AUTOGRAFT BONE - Bone transplanted from one part to
another part of the body in the same individual.
AUTOLOGUS - a graft in which the donor and recipient
area are in the same individual.
AUTONOMIC NERVOUS SYSTEM - Involuntary nervous system,
also termed the vegetative nervous system. A system
of nerve cells whose activities are beyond voluntary
AVASCULAR - Non-vascular, not provided with blood vessels.
AVM (ARTERIOVENOUS MALFORMATION) - Deformity, abnormal
shape or structure relating to veins and arteries.
AXIS - The vertebral column. The second cervical vertebra,
about which the first cervical vertebra rotates, allowing
AXON - The part of a nerve cell that usually sends
signals to other nerves or structures.
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