EMT Glossary Ch 13-19

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Chapter 13

Question Answer
aphasiaThe inability to understand or produce speech.
arterial ruptureRupture of a cerebral artery that may contribute to interruption of cerebral blood flow.
atherosclerosisA disorder in which cholesterol and calcium build up inside the walls of blood vessels, forming plaque, which eventually leads to partial or complete blockage of blood flow and the formation of clots that can break off and embolize.
auraA sensation experienced prior to a seizure; serves as a warning sign that a seizure is about to occur.
cerebral embolismObstruction of a cerebral artery caused by a clot that was formed elsewhere in the body and traveled to the brain
cerebrovascular accident (CVA)An interruption of blood flow to the brain that results in the loss of brain function.
comaA state of profound unconsciousness from which one cannot be roused.
coup-contrecoup brain injuryA brain injury that occurs when force is applied to the head and energy transmission through brain tissue causes injury on the opposite side of original impact.
dysarthriaThe inability to pronounce speech clearly, often due to loss of the nerves or brain cells that control the small muscles in the larynx.
expressive aphasiaA speech disorder in which a person can understand what is being said but cannot produce the right sounds in order to speak properly.
febrile seizuresConvulsions that result from sudden high fevers, particularly in children.
generalized seizureSeizure characterized by severe twitching of all the body's muscles that may last several minutes or more; also known as a grand mal seizure.
hemiparesisWeakness on one side of the body.
hemorrhagic strokeOne of the two main types of stroke; occurs as a result of bleeding inside the brain.
hypoglycemiaAn abnormally low blood glucose level.
incontinenceLoss of bowel and bladder control due to a generalized seizure.
infarcted cellsCells in the brain that die as a result of loss of blood flow to the brain.
ischemiaA lack of oxygen that deprives tissues of necessary nutrients.
ischemic strokeOne of the two main types of stroke; occurs when blood flow to a particular part of the brain is cut off by a blockage (eg, a clot) inside a blood vessel.
postictal statePeriod following a seizure that lasts between 5 and 30 minutes, characterized by labored respirations and some degree of altered mental status.
receptive aphasiaA speech disorder in which a person has trouble understanding speech but is able to speak clearly.
seizureGeneralized, uncoordinated muscular activity associated with loss of consciousness; a convulsion.
status epilepticusA condition in which seizures recur every few minutes, or last more than 30 minutes.
strokeA loss of brain function in certain brain cells that do not get enough oxygen during a CVA. Usually caused by obstruction of the blood vessels in the brain that feed oxygen to those brain cells.
thrombosisClotting of the cerebral arteries that may result in the interruption of cerebral blood flow and subsequent stroke.
tonic-clonicA type of seizure that features rhythmic back-and-forth motion of an extremity and body stiffness.
transient ischemic attack (TIA)A disorder of the brain in which brain cells temporarily stop working because of insufficient oxygen, causing stroke-like symptoms that resolve completely within 24 hours of onset.

Chapter 14

Question Answer
acute abdomenA condition of sudden onset of pain within the abdomen, usually indicating peritonitis; immediate medical or surgical treatment is necessary.
aneurysmA swelling or enlargement of a part of an artery, resulting from weakening of the arterial wall.
anorexiaLack of appetite for food.
appendicitisInflammation of the appendix.
cholecystitisInflammation of the gallbladder.
colicAcute, intermittent cramping abdominal pain.
cystitisInflammation of the bladder.
diverticulitisBulging out of intestinal rings in small pockets at weak areas in the muscle walls, creating abdominal discomfort.
guardingInvoluntary muscle contractions (spasm) of the abdominal wall in an effort to protect the inflamed abdomen; a sign of peritonitis.
herniaThe protrusion of a loop of an organ or tissue through an abnormal body opening.
ileusParalysis of the bowel, arising from any one of several causes; stops contractions that move material through the intestine.
pancreatitisInflammation of the pancreas.
peritoneumThe membrane lining the abdominal cavity (parietal peritoneum) and covering the abdominal organs (visceral peritoneum).
peritonitisInflammation of the peritoneum.
referred painPain felt in an area of the body other than the area where the cause of pain is located.
strangulationComplete obstruction of blood circulation in a given organ as a result of compression or entrapment; an emergency situation causing death of tissue.
ulcerErosion of the stomach or intestinal lining.

Chapter 15

Question Answer
acidosisA pathologic condition resulting from the accumulation of acids in the body.
diabetes mellitusA metabolic disorder in which the ability to metabolize carbohydrates (sugars) is impaired, usually because of a lack of insulin.
diabetic comaUnconsciousness caused by dehydration, very high blood glucose levels, and acidosis in diabetes.
diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA)A form of acidosis in uncontrolled diabetes in which certain acids accumulate when insulin is not available.
glucoseOne of the basic sugars; it is the primary fuel, along with oxygen, for cellular metabolism.
hormoneA chemical substance that regulates the activity of body organs and tissues; produced by a gland.
hyperglycemiaAbnormally high glucose level in the blood.
hypoglycemiaAn abnormally low blood glucose level.
insulinA hormone produced by the Islets of Langerhans (an exocrine gland on the pancreas) that enables glucose in the blood to enter the cells of the body; used in synthetic form to treat and control diabetes mellitus.
insulin shockUnconsciousness or altered mental status in a patient with diabetes, caused by significant hypoglycemia; usually the result of excessive exercise and activity or failure to eat after a routine dose of insulin.
Kussmaul respirationsDeep, rapid breathing; usually the result of an accumulation of certain acids when insulin is not available in the body.
polydipsiaExcessive thirst persisting for long periods of time despite reasonable fluid intake; often the result of excessive urination.
polyphagiaExcessive eating; in diabetes, the inability to use glucose properly can cause a sense of hunger.
polyuriaThe passage of an unusually large volume of urine in a given period; in diabetes, this can result from wasting of glucose in the urine.
type I diabetesThe type of diabetic disease that usually starts in childhood and requires insulin for proper treatment and control.
type II diabetesThe type of diabetic disease that usually starts in later life and often can be controlled through diet and oral medications.

Chapter 16

Question Answer
allergenA substance that causes an allergic reaction.
allergic reactionThe body's exaggerated immune response to an internal or surface agent.
anaphylaxisAn extreme, possibly life-threatening systemic allergic reaction that may include shock and respiratory failure.
envenomationThe act of injecting venom.
epinephrineA substance produced by the body (commonly called adrenaline), and a drug produced by pharmaceutical companies that increases pulse rate and blood pressure; the drug of choice for an anaphylactic reaction.
histaminesSubstance released by the immune system in allergic reactions that are responsible for many of the symptoms of anaphylaxis.
leukotrienesChemical substances that contribute to anaphylaxis; released by the immune system in allergic reactions.
stridorA harsh, high-pitched, crowing inspiratory sound, such as the sound often heard in acute laryngeal (upper airway) obstruction.
toxinA poison or harmful substance.
urticariaSmall spots of generalized itching and/or burning that appear as multiple raised areas on the skin; hives.
whealA raised, swollen, well-defined area on the skin resulting from an insect bite or allergic reaction.
wheezingA high-pitched, whistling breath sound, characteristically heard on expiration in patients with asthma or COPD.

Chapter 17

Question Answer
addictionA state of overwhelming obsession or physical need to continue the use of a drug or agent.
antidoteA substance that is used to neutralize or counteract a poison.
delirium tremens (DTs)A severe withdrawal syndrome seen in alcoholics who are deprived of ethyl alcohol; characterized by restlessness, fever, sweating, disorientation, agitation, and seizures; can be fatal if untreated.
hallucinogensAgents that produce false perceptions in any one of the five senses.
hematemesisVomiting blood.
hypnoticA sleep-inducing effect or agent.
ingestionSwallowing; taking a substance by mouth.
opioidsAny drug or agent with actions similar to morphine.
poisonA substance whose chemical action could damage structures or impair function when introduced into the body.
sedativeA substance that decreases activity and excitement.
stimulantAn agent that produces an excited state.
substance abuseThe misuse of any substance to produce some desired effect.
toleranceThe need for increasing amounts of a drug to obtain the same effect.
toxinA poison or harmful substance.
vomitusVomited material.

Chapter 18

Question Answer
air embolismAir bubbles in the blood vessels.
ambient temperatureThe temperature of the surrounding environment.
antiveninA serum that counteracts the effect of venom from an animal or insect.
bendsCommon name for decompression sickness.
bradycardiaSlow heart rate, less than 60 beats/min.
breath-holding syncopeLoss of consciousness caused by a decreased breathing stimulus.
conductionThe loss of heat by direct contact (eg, when a body part comes into contact with a colder object).
convectionThe loss of body heat caused by air movement (eg, breeze blowing across the body).
core temperatureThe temperature of the central part of the body (eg, the heart, lungs, and vital organs).
decompression sicknessA painful condition seen in divers who ascend too quickly, in which gas, especially nitrogen, forms bubbles in blood vessels and other tissues; also called "the bends."
diving reflexSlowing of the heart rate caused by submersion in cold water.
drowningDeath from suffocation by submersion in water.
electrolytesCertain salts and other chemicals that are dissolved in body fluids and cells.
evaporationConversion of water or another fluid from a liquid to a gas.
frostbiteDamage to tissues as the result of exposure to cold; frozen body parts.
heat crampsPainful muscle spasms usually associated with vigorous activity in a hot environment.
heat exhaustionA form of heat injury in which the body loses significant amounts of fluid and electrolytes because of heavy sweating; also called heat prostration or heat collapse.
heatstrokeA life-threatening condition of severe hyperthermia caused by exposure to excessive natural or artificial heat, marked by warm, dry skin; severely altered mental status; and often irreversible coma.
hyperbaric chamberA chamber, usually a small room, pressurized to more than atmospheric pressure.
hyperthermiaA condition in which core temperature rises to 101 degrees F (38.3 degrees C) or more.
hypothermiaA condition in which the internal body temperature falls below 95 degrees F (35 degrees C) after exposure to a cold environment.
laryngospasmSpasm of the larynx and surrounding structures.
near drowningSurvival, at least temporarily, after suffocation in water.
radiationThe transfer of heat to colder objects in the environment by radiant energy, for example heat gain from a fire.
respirationThe loss of body heat as warm air in the lungs is exhaled into the atmosphere and cooler air is inhaled.
reverse triageA triage process in which efforts are focused on those who are in respiratory and cardiac arrest, and different from conventional triage where such patients would be classified as deceased. Used in triaging multiple victims of a lightning strike.
scubaA system that delivers air to the mouth and lungs at various atmospheric pressures, increasing with the depth of the dive; stands for self-contained underwater breathing apparatus.
turgorThe ability of the skin to resist deformation; tested by gently pinching skin on the forehead or back of the hand.

Chapter 19

Question Answer
activities of daily living (ADL)The basic activities a person usually accomplishes during a normal day, such as eating, dressing, and bathing.
altered mental statusA change in the way a person thinks and behaves that may signal disease in the central nervous system or elsewhere in the body.
behaviorHow a person functions or acts in response to his or her environment.
behavioral crisisThe point at which a person's reactions to events interfere with activities of daily living; this becomes a psychiatric emergency when it causes a major life interruption, such as attempted suicide.
depressionA persistent mood of sadness, despair, and discouragement; may be a symptom of many different mental and physical disorders, or it may be a disorder on its own.
functional disorderA disorder in which there is no known physiologic reason for the abnormal functioning of an organ or organ system.
mental disorderAn illness with psychological or behavioral symptoms and/or impairment in functioning caused by a social, psychological, genetic, physical, chemical, or biologic disturbance.
organic brain syndromeTemporary or permanent dysfunction of the brain, caused by a disturbance in the physical or physiologic functioning of brain tissue.
psychogenicA symptom or illness that is caused by mental factors as opposed to physical ones.
reflective listeningA technique used to gain insight into a patient's thinking, involving repeating, in the form of a question, what the patient has said.