EMT Glossary Ch 9-12

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Chapter 9

Question Answer
cellular telephonelow-power portable radio that communicates through an interconnected series of repeater stations called "cells."
channelassigned frequency or frequencies that are used to carry voice and/or data communications.
dedicated linespecial telephone line that is used for specific point-to-point communications; also known as a "hot line."
duplex ability to transmit and receive simultaneously.
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) federal agency that has jurisdiction over interstate and international telephone and telegraph services and satellite communications, all of which may involve EMS activity
MED channelsVHF and UHF channels that the FCC has designated exclusively for EMS use.
paging use of a radio signal and a voice or digital message that is transmitted to pagers ("beepers") or desktop monitor radios.
rapporttrusting relationship that you build with your patient.
repeaterspecial base station radio that receives messages and signals on one frequency and then automatically retransmits them on a second frequency.
scannerradio receiver that searches or "scans" across several frequencies until the message is completed; the process is then repeated.
simplexSingle-frequency radio; transmissions can occur in either direction but not simultaneously in both; when one party transmits, the other can only receive, and the party that is transmitting is unable to receive.
standing ordersWritten documents, signed by the EMS system's medical director, that outline specific directions, permissions, and sometimes prohibitions regarding patient care; also called protocols.
telemetryprocess in which electronic signals are converted into coded, audible signals; these signals can then be transmitted by radio or telephone to a receiver at the hospital with a decoder.
UHF (ultra-high frequency)Radio frequencies between 300 and 3,000 MHz.
VHF (very high frequency)Radio frequencies between 30 and 300 MHz; the VHF spectrum is further divided into "high" and "low" bands.

Chapter 10

Question Answer
absorptionprocess by which medications travel through body tissues until they reach the bloodstream.
actiontherapeutic effect of a medication on the body.
activated charcoaloral medication that binds and adsorbs ingested toxins in the gastrointestinal tract for treatment of some poisonings and medication overdoses. Charcoal is ground into a very fine powder that provides the greatest possible surface area for binding medications that have been taken by mouth; it is carried on the EMS unit.
adsorptionprocess of binding or sticking to a surface.
aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid, or ASA)medication that is an antipyretic (reduces fever), analgesic (reduces pain), anti-inflammatory (reduces inflammation), and potent inhibitor of platelet aggregation (clumping).
contraindicationsConditions that make a particular medication or treatment inappropriate, for example, a condition in which a medication should not be given because it would not help or may actually harm a patient.
doseamount of medication given on the basis of the patient's size and age.
epinephrinemedication that increases heart rate and blood pressure but also eases breathing problems by decreasing muscle tone of the bronchiole tree; you may be allowed to help the patient self-administer the medication.
gelsemiliquid substance that is administered orally in capsule form or through plastic tubes.
generic nameoriginal chemical name of a medication (in contrast with one of its "trade names"); the name is not capitalized.
hypoglycemiaabnormally low blood glucose level.
indicationstherapeutic uses for a specific medication.
inhalationBreathing into the lungs; a medication delivery route.
intramuscular (IM) injectioninjection into a muscle; a medication delivery route.
intraosseous (IO)Into the bone; a medication delivery route.
intravenous (IV) injectioninjection directly into a vein; a medication delivery route.
metered-dose inhaler (MDI)miniature spray canister through which droplets or particles of medication may be inhaled.
nitroglycerinmedication that increases cardiac perfusion by causing arteries to dilate; you may be allowed to help the patient self-administer the medication.
oralBy mouth; a medication delivery route.
oral glucosesimple sugar that is readily absorbed by the bloodstream; it is carried on the EMS unit.
over-the-counter (OTC) medicationsMedications that may be purchased directly by a patient without a prescription.
oxygengas that all cells need for metabolism; the heart and brain, especially, cannot function without oxygen.
per os (PO)Through the mouth; a medication delivery route; same as oral.
per rectum (PR)Through the rectum; a medication delivery route.
pharmacologystudy of the properties and effects of medications.
polypharmacyuse of multiple medications on a regular basis.
prescription medicationsMedications that are distributed to patients only by pharmacists according to a physician's order.
side effectsAny effects of a medication other than the desired ones.
solutionliquid mixture that cannot be separated by filtering or allowing the mixture to stand.
subcutaneous (SC) injectionInjection into the tissue between the skin and muscle; a medication delivery route.
sublingual (SL)Under the tongue; a medication delivery route.
suspensionmixture of ground particles that are distributed evenly throughout a liquid but do not dissolve.
topical medicationsLotions, creams, and ointments that are applied to the surface of the skin and affect only that area; a medication delivery route.
trade namebrand name that a manufacturer gives a medication; the name is capitalized.
transcutaneousThrough the skin; a medication delivery route.
transdermal medicationsMedications that are designed to be absorbed through the skin (transcutaneously).

Chapter 11

Question Answer
allergensubstance that causes an allergic reaction.
asthmadisease of the lungs in which muscle spasm in the small air passageways and the production of large amounts of mucus with swelling of the mucus lining of the respiratory passages result in airway obstruction.
carbon dioxide retentioncondition characterized by a chronically high blood level of carbon dioxide in which the respiratory center no longer responds to high blood levels of carbon dioxide.
chronic bronchitisIrritation of the major lung passageways, from either infectious disease or irritants such as smoke.
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)slow process of dilation and disruption of the airways and alveoli, caused by chronic bronchial obstruction.
common coldviral infection usually associated with swollen nasal mucous membranes and the production of fluid from the sinuses and nose.
cracklescrackling breath sound caused by the flow of air through liquid in the lungs; a sign of lower airway obstruction.
croupInfection of the airway below the level of the vocal cords, usually caused by a virus.
diphtheriainfectious disease in which a membrane forms, lining the pharynx; this lining can severely obstruct the passage of air into the larynx.
dyspneaDifficulty breathing.
embolusblood clot or other substance in the circulatory system that travels to a blood vessel where it causes blockage.
emphysemadisease of the lungs in which there is extreme dilation and eventual destruction of pulmonary alveoli with poor exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide; it is one form of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
epiglottitisinfectious disease in which the epiglottis becomes inflamed and enlarged and may cause upper airway obstruction.
hyperventilationRapid or deep breathing that lowers blood carbon dioxide levels below normal.
hypoxiacondition in which the body's cells and tissues do not have enough oxygen.
hypoxic driveBackup system to control respirations when oxygen levels fall.
pleural effusioncollection of fluid between the lung and chest wall that may compress the lung.
pleuritic chest painSharp, stabbing pain in the chest that is worsened by a deep breath or other chest wall movement; often caused by inflammation or irritation of the pleura.
pneumoniainfectious disease of the lung that damages lung tissue.
pneumothoraxpartial or complete accumulation of air in the pleural space.
pulmonary edemabuildup of fluid in the lungs, usually as a result of congestive heart failure.
pulmonary embolismblood clot that breaks off from a large vein and travels to the blood vessels of the lung, causing obstruction of blood flow.
rhonchiCoarse, low-pitched breath sounds heard in patients with chronic mucus in the upper airways.
severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)Potentially life-threatening viral infection that usually starts with flu-like symptoms.
stridorharsh, high-pitched, crowing inspiratory sound, such as the sound often heard in acute laryngeal (upper airway) obstruction.
wheezinghigh-pitched, whistling breath sound, characteristically heard on expiration in patients with asthma or COPD.

Chapter 12

Question Answer
acute myocardial infarction (AMI)Heart attack; death of heart muscle following obstruction of blood flow to it. Acute in this context means "new" or "happening right now."
angina pectorisTransient (short-lived) chest discomfort caused by partial or temporary blockage of blood flow to the heart muscle.
anteriorfront surface of the body; the side facing you in the standard anatomic position.
aortaprincipal artery leaving the left side of the heart and carrying freshly oxygenated blood to the body.
aortic valveone-way valve that lies between the left ventricle and the aorta. It keeps blood from flowing back into the left ventricle after the left ventricle ejects its blood into the aorta. One of four heart valves.
arrhythmiairregular or abnormal heart rhythm.
asystoleComplete absence of heart electrical activity.
atherosclerosisdisorder 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.
atriumUpper chamber of the heart.
bradycardiaSlow heart rate, less than 60 beats/min.
cardiac arreststate in which the heart fails to generate an effective and detectable blood flow; pulses are not palpable in cardiac arrest, even if muscular and electrical activity continues in the heart.
cardiogenic shockstate in which not enough oxygen is delivered to the tissues of the body, caused by low output of blood from the heart. It can be a severe complication of a large acute myocardial infarction, as well as other conditions.
congestive heart failure (CHF)disorder in which the heart loses part of its ability to effectively pump blood, usually as a result of damage to the heart muscle and usually resulting in a backup of fluid into the lungs.
coronary arteryblood vessel that carries blood and nutrients to the heart muscle.
defibrillateTo shock a fibrillating (chaotically beating) heart with specialized electrical current in an attempt to restore a normal rhythmic beat.
dependent edemaSwelling in the part of the body closest to the ground, caused by collection of fluid in the tissues; a possible sign of congestive heart failure (CHF).
dilationWidening of a tubular structure such as a coronary artery.
infarctionDeath of a body tissue, usually caused by interruption of its blood supply.
inferiorpart of the body, or any body part, nearer to the feet.
ischemialack of oxygen that deprives tissues of necessary nutrients, resulting from partial or complete blockage of blood flow; potentially reversible because permanent injury has not yet occurred.
lumeninside diameter of an artery or other hollow structure.
myocardiumheart muscle.
occlusionBlockage, usually of a tubular structure such as a blood vessel.
perfusionflow of blood through body tissues and vessels.
posteriorback surface of the body; the side away from you in the standard anatomical position.
superiorpart of the body, or any body part, nearer to the head.
syncopefainting spell or transient loss of consciousness, often caused by an interruption of blood flow to the brain.
tachycardiaRapid heart rhythm, more than 100 beats/min.
ventricleOne of two (right and left) lower chambers of the heart. The left ventricle receives blood from the left atrium (upper chamber) and delivers blood to the aorta. The right ventricle receives blood from the right atrium and pumps it into the pulmonary artery.
ventricular fibrillationrapid, completely disorganized ventricular rhythm with chaotic characteristics, no specific pattern, and no discernable P, QRS, or T waves
ventricular tachycardia (VT)Rapid heart rhythm in which the electrical impulse begins in the ventricle (instead of the atrium), which may result in inadequate blood flow and eventually deteriorate into cardiac arrest.