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Body System: DIGESTIVE




AAD: antibiotic associated diarrhea

abd: abdominal/abdomen

abdomin-: abdomen

abdominal pain: Discomfort, distress, or agony in the abdominal cavity. Can be acute or chronic. A significant clinical symptom.

abdominal quadrants: Four segments of the abdomen divided by horizontal and vertical lines intersecting at the umbilicus.

abdominal wall: The boundaries of the abdomen, consisting of multiple layers: skin, subcutaneous fat, superficial fascia, muscles, transversalis fascia, extra peritoneal fat, and the parietal peritoneum. Extends from the thoracic cage to the pelvis.

abdominoplasty: Surgical removal of excess abdominal skin and fat and tightening of the abdominal wall. Commonly called a tummy tuck.

acarbose: A drug prescribed in treating type 2 diabetes mellitus. It retards the digestion of complex carbohydrates.

achlorhydria: Absence of hydrochloric acid in gastric secretion.

aerophagia: Excessive swallowing of air.

aerophagy: Excessive swallowing of air caused by anxiety or improper eating habits.

ageusia: Loss of the sense of taste.

aliment/o: nutrition

alimentary canal: The passage for the digestion and absorption of food. Extends from mouth to anus.

amyl-: starch

amylase: A group of enzymes that help digest starches.

amylose: The soluble constituent of starch.

an/o: anus, ring

anal canal: The terminal segment of the large intestine ending at the anus.

anastomosis: A surgical connection between two structures.

anorexia nervosa: An eating disorder characterized by a loss of appetite and an excessive fear of becoming overweight.

antacids: Substances that neutralize acidity in the stomach.

anthelmintics: Agents that destroy or prevent development of parasitic worms.

antidiarrheal: A drug or food for treating diarrhea.

antiemetics: Drugs used to prevent nausea or vomiting.

anus: The distal opening of the alimentary canal, lying in the fold between the buttocks.

append/o: appendix

appendicitis: Acute inflammation of the vermiform appendix.

appendix: A worm-like blind tube extension from the cecum.

appetite: Natural recurring desire, e.g. for food.

ascites: Abnormal accumulation of free fluid within the peritoneal cavity.

ascorbic acid: A water soluble compound. As vitamin C, it naturally occurs in citrus fruits and many vegetables.

aspartame: Artificial sweeter, metabolized as phenylalanine and aspartic acid.

assimilation: The transformation of food into living tissue.

avitaminosis: Disease caused by vitamin deficiency.

bariatric surgery: Surgical procedures aimed at producing major weight reduction in patients with morbid obesity.

bariatrics: Activities related to weight reduction in patients with obesity including diet, exercise, medication and surgery.

beriberi: A disorder caused by a deficiency of thiamine (vitamin B1) and characterized by heart failure and edema.

bezoar: A mass of swallowed hair, fruit or vegetable fibers, or similar substances found in the alimentary canal.

bil/i: bile, gall

bile: An emulsifying fluid produced in the liver, stored in the gall bladder and secreted into the duodenum.

biliary: Pertaining to bile, the gall bladder or bile ducts.

bilirubin: The orange-yellow pigment of bile.

biotin: A water-soluble, enzyme co-factor present in minute amounts in every living cell. It is abundant in liver, kidney, pancreas, yeast, and milk.

BM: bowel movement

BMI: body mass index

body mass index: A formula for determining obesity based upon a person's weight and height.

bolus: A soft mass of chewed food ready to be swallowed.

borborygmus: Belching.

botulism: A rare, but potentially fatal form of food poisoning caused by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum.

bucc/o: cheek

bulimia: Eating an excess amount of food in a short period of time. It is caused by an abnormal craving for food.

Bulimia Nervosa: An eating disorder characterized by binge eating followed by inappropriate purging (e.g. vomiting or using laxatives) to avoid weight gain.

butter: The fatty part of milk, separated when milk or cream is churned. A soft, solid, yellowish substance.

cachexia: General ill health, malnutrition, and weight loss, usually associated with chronic disease.

caffeine: An alkaloid drug, found in coffee and tea that simulates the central nervous system increasing alertness. It is also a diuretic.

CAH: chronic active hepatitis

Cal: large calorie

calor/i: heat

capsule endoscopes: A pill sized video camera encased in a capsule, designed to be swallowed and subsequently traverse the gastrointestinal tract while transmitting diagnostic images.

carbohydrates: The largest class of organic compounds, including starch, glycogen, cellulose, polysaccharides, and simple monosaccharides. They constitute a main source of energy for body functions.

cardia: That part of the stomach close to the opening from esophagus into the stomach. The cardia is so named because of its closeness to the heart.

carotene: A red or yellow organic compound found in sweet potatoes, egg yolk, carrots, spinach, broccoli and other leafy vegetables.

casein: A nutritive milk protein containing all of the common amino acids and rich in the essential ones.

cec/o: cecum, first section of colon

cecum: The outpouching area of the large intestine that is below the entrance of the small intestine. It has a worm-like extension, the vermiform appendix.

celi/o: abdomen

celiac: Pertaining to the abdominal cavity.

celiac disease: A disease whose symptoms are precipitated by foods containing gluten, characterized by inflammation of the small intestine. An autoimmune disease.

cellulose: The chief constituent of plant fiber. Indigestible roughage.

cheil/o: lips

chol/e: bile, gall

cholangi/o: bile vessel

cholangitis: Inflammation of the bile ducts due to bacterial infection or blockage.

cholecyst/o: gallbladder

cholecystitis: Inflammation of the gallbladder.

choledoch/o: common bile duct

cholelithiasis: Presence or formation of gallstones in the gallbladder.

cholera: An acute diarrheal disease endemic in India and Southeast Asia.

cholestasis: Impairment of bile flow.

chyle: The opaque, milky-white fluid consisting mainly of emulsified fats that passes through the lacteals of the small intestines into the lymphatic system.

chylothorax: An accumulation of chyle in the pleural space.

cirrh/o: orange-yellow

cirrhosis: A chronic, progressive liver disease in which liver cells are replaced by scar tissue.

col/o: colon

colitis: Inflammation of the colon.

colon: The main segment of large intestine.

colon/o: colon

colonoscopy: Endoscopic examination, therapy or surgery of the luminal surface of the colon.

colorectal cancer: A malignant neoplasm of the large intestine.

colostomy: The surgical construction of an opening between the colon and the surface of the body.

constipation: Infrequent or difficult evacuation of feces.

corpulence: Obesity.

craving: An intense desire to consume a substance.

Crohn disease: Chronic inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract thought to be caused by inherited and environmental factors and a defect in the immune system.

CUC: chronic ulcerative colitis

D&V: diarrhea & vomiting

dent/i: teeth

diarrhea: The onset of three or more loose or liquid bowel movements in a day.

dietary fiber: Indigestible carbohydrate materials. Can be soluble or insoluble in water.

dietetic: Pertaining to food and nutrition.

digestion: The process of converting food into absorbable substances for metabolism and use by the body.

digestive system: A group of structures, organs and glands stretching from the mouth to the anus, that breakdown food substances, absorb nutrients and remove waste.

diverticulitis: An inflammation in the diverticula of the intestinal tract.

diverticulosis: The presence of multiple pouches, usually in the colonic or gastric wall.

diverticulum: A pouch or sac developed from a tubular or saccular organ, such as the gastrointestinal tract.

DRE: digital rectal examination

duoden/o: duodenum

duodenitis: Inflammation of the duodenum section of the small intestine.

duodenum: The proximal (first) portion of the small intestine, extending from the pylorus to the jejunum.

dysentery: Acute inflammation of the intestine marked by frequent watery stools, often with blood and by pain, fever, and dehydration.

dyspepsia: Impaired digestion, especially after eating.

dysphagia: Difficulty in swallowing.

EGD: esophagogastroduodenoscopy

EGF: epidermal growth factor

electrolyte: A substances that dissociates into two or more ions and can then conduct an electric current.

elimination: Removal of waste products from the body.

-emesis: vomiting

emetics: Pertaining to or causing vomiting.

encopresis: The loss of the ability to control bowel movements.

enema: A solution or compound that is introduced into the rectum with the purpose of cleansing the colon or for diagnostic procedures.

enter/o: small intestines

enteritis: Inflammation of any segment of the small intestine.

enterocolitis: Inflammation of the mucous membrane of both small and large intestines.

enterocytes: Columnar cells of the small intestine responsible for the final digestion and absorption of nutrients, electrolytes and water.

enterostomy: Creation of an artificial external opening or fistula in the intestines.

epiglott/o: epiglottis (cartilage that prevents food from entering the trachea)

epulis: A swelling on the gum.

ERCP: endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography

eructation: To belch.

esophag/o: esophagus

esophageal achalasia: Failure of the lower esophageal sphincter to relax, resulting in functional obstruction of the esophagus, and dysphagia.

esophageal varices: Abnormally dilated veins of the esophagus. High risk of spontaneous bleeding. Associated with alcohol abuse.

esophagitis: Inflammation of the esophagus.

esophagus: The muscular membranous passage between the pharynx and the stomach in the upper gastrointestinal tract.

eustachian tube: A narrow canal extending from the middle ear to the pharynx.

feces: Excrement from the intestines, containing unabsorbed solids, waste products, secretions, and bacteria.

flatulence: Production of gas in the gastrointestinal tract which may be expelled through the anus.

gallbladder: A reservoir for bile located under the right lobe of the liver.

gallstone: A hard mass that precipitates in the biliary tract, usually in the gallbladder.

gastr/o: stomach

gastralgia: Pain in the stomach or abdomen

gastrectomy: Excision of part or all of the stomach.

gastric: Pertaining to the stomach.

gastric absorption: Uptake of substances via the stomach.

gastritis: The painful inflammation of the stomach's lining.

gastroenteritis: Inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract.

gastroenterology: A subspecialty of medicine concerned with diseases of the digestive system and related structures including the esophagus, liver, gallbladder, and pancreas.

gastrointestinal tract: Generally refers to the digestive structures stretching from the mouth to anus, but does not include the accessory glandular organs (liver; biliary tract; pancreas).

gastroparesis: Chronic delayed gastric emptying.

gastrostomy: Creation of an artificial external opening into the stomach for nutritional support or gastrointestinal compression.

gavage: Forced feeding a patient especially through a tube passed into the stomach

GB: gallbladder

GERD: gastroesophageal reflux disease

GI: gastrointestinal

gingiv/o: gums

gingivitis: Inflammation of gum tissue.

gleason score: A method of classifying malignancy of prostate cancers.

gloss/o: tongue

glossitis: Inflammation of the tongue.

glycemic index: A numerical system of measuring the rate of blood glucose generation from a particular food item.

glycemic load: A quantitative value of a measured amount of a specific food that is equal to the glycemic index of that food multiplied by the carbohydrate content of that food.

glycine: A non-essential amino acid that is a major component of gelatin and silk fibroin. It used therapeutically as a nutrient.

HAV: hepatitis A virus

HBV: hepatitis B virus

HCV: hepatitis C virus

HDV: hepatitis D

heartburn: Substernal pain or burning sensation, usually associated with regurgitation of gastric juice into the esophagus.

helc/o: ulcer

hematemesis: Vomiting blood.

hemorrhoids: Swollen veins in the lower part of the rectum or anus.

hepat/o: liver

hepatic: Pertaining to the liver.

hepatitis: Inflammation of the liver caused by viral agents.

hepatoblastoma: A malignant neoplasm occurring in young children, primarily in the liver,

hepatocytes: A parenchymal liver cell.

hepatoma: A malignant tumor of the liver

hepatomegaly: Having an enlarged liver.

herpes labialis: Cold sores caused by herpes simplex I.

hyperemesis gravidarum: Severe, intractable vomiting during early pregnancy. Often needs IV fluids and anti nausea agents.

hyperphagia: Overeating.

IBD: inflammatory bowel disease

IBS: irritable bowel syndrome

IBW: ideal body weight

ile/o: ileum (final section of small intestine)

ileectomy: Surgical removal of the ileum.

ileitis: Inflammation of any segment of the ileum.

ileostomy: A surgical construction of an opening into the ileum on the abdominal wall.

ileum: The distal and narrowest portion of the small intestine, between the jejunum and the ileocecal valve of the large intestine.

Ileus: Impairment of the normal flow of the intestinal contents within the bowel.

inguin/o: groin

intestines: The section of the alimentary canal from the stomach to the anal canal.

intussusception: The movement of a bowel segment into an adjacent segment in the manner of a telescope. The condition is commonest in children.

inulin: A starch found in the tubers and roots of many plants. It is used as a diagnostic aid in tests of kidney function

jaundice: Yellowing of the skin and eyes due to excessive bilirubin in body

jejun/o: jejunum (second part of the small intestines)

jejunal: Pertaining to the jejunum

jejunum: Part of the small intestine, connecting the duodenum to the ileum.

labi/o: lips, labia

labial mucosa: The inner lining of the lips.

lactase: An enzyme secreted by the small intestine glands that convert lactose into glucose and galactose.

lactic acid: A organic acid produced by anaerobic respiration, by fermentation of carbohydrates in the rumen and by bacterial action on milk.

lactose: The main sugar of milk consisting of one molecule each of glucose and galactose.

lapar/o: abdominal wall

laxative: Agents that produce a soft formed stool and relax the bowels, used to relieve constipation.

leukoplakia: A white patch lesion found on a mucous membrane that cannot be scraped off.

LFT: liver function test

LGI: lower gastrointestinal

lingu/o: tongue

lingual: Pertaining to or near the tongue.

lipolysis: The metabolic process of breaking down of fat.

-lithiasis: presence of stones

lysine: An essential amino acid.

malabsorption: Inadequate intestinal absorption of nutrients.

malnutrition: A condition caused by insufficient intake of nutrients.

-masesis: chewing, mastication

mastication: The process of chewing and grinding food in the mouth.

megacolon: Extreme dilatation of the colon.

melena: The black, tarry, foul-smelling feces that contain degraded blood.

meli-: honey, sugar

mesenteric: Relating to the double layer of peritoneum suspending the intestine from the posterior abdominal wall.

mesentery: A double layer of peritoneum that encloses the intestines and attaches them to the posterior abdominal wall.

mucositis: An inflammation of a mucous membrane, such as the lining of the mouth and throat.

N&V: nausea and vomiting

nausea: An unpleasant sensation in the stomach accompanied by the inclination to vomit.

NG: nasogastric

norovirus: A virus associated with epidemic gastroenteritis.

nutri/o: to nourish

obesity: Being too heavy for one's height.

obstipation: Severe constipation caused by obstruction in the intestines.

odont/o: tooth

odynophagia: Painful swallowing.

omentum: A double-layered fold of peritoneum that attaches the stomach to other organs in the abdominal cavity.

or/o: mouth

oral: Pertaining to the mouth.

oral hygiene: The practice of personal hygiene of the mouth. It includes the maintenance of oral cleanliness, tissue tone, and general preservation of oral health.

ori-: mouth

oropharynx: The middle portion of the pharynx that lies posterior to the mouth, inferior to the soft palate, and superior to the base of the tongue and epiglottis.

-ose: a carbohydrate

ostomy: Surgery to create an artificial opening (stoma) into the urinary or gastrointestinal canal.

palat/o: palate

pancreas: An irregularly shaped gland, located behind the stomach, that secretes pancreatic juice into the duodenum and insulin, glucagon, and somatostatin into the bloodstream.

pancreatectomy: Removal of the pancreas.

parotid gland: Either of the pair of salivary glands that lie on the sides of the face immediately below and in front of the ear.

parotitis: Inflammation of the parotid gland.

pecten: The middle, narrow zone in the anal canal.

PEG: percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy

pellagra: A disease characterized by scaly dermatitis, diarrhea and dementia caused by a deficiency of niacin and protein in the diet.

-pepsia: digestion

peptic ulcer: Ulcer that occurs in the regions of the gastrointestinal tract which come into contact with gastric juice.

perihepatitis: Inflammation of the peritoneal capsule of the liver

peristalsis: A movement, caused by sequential muscle contraction, that pushes the contents of the intestines or other tubular organs in one direction.

peritone/o: peritoneum (serous membrane lining the abdominal cavity)

peritoneal absorption: Uptake of substances from the peritoneal cavity.

peritoneal cavity: The space enclosed by the peritoneum. It is divided into two portions, the greater sac and the lesser sac or omental bursa, which lies behind the STOMACH. The two sacs are connected by the foramen of Winslow, or epiploic foramen.

-phagia: eating, swallowing

polyp: Abnormal tissue mass that protrudes into the lumen of the digestive or respiratory tracts.

polyps: Discrete abnormal tissue masses that protrude into the lumen of the digestive tract or the respiratory tract.

portal vein: A vein that conducts blood from the digestive organs, spleen, pancreas, and gallbladder to the liver.

-posia: drinking, fluid intake

postprandial: After a meal.

-prandial: meal

prebiotics: Indigestible food ingredients that promote overall health by supporting the activity of probiotic bacteria in the large intestine.

proct/o: anus and rectum

proctocolitis: Inflammation of the rectum and the colon.

proctoscope: Endoscope for examination of the rectum and anus.

proteolysis: The decomposition of proteins into peptides and amino acids by enzymes in the digestive tract.

ptyal/o: saliva

PUD: peptic ulcer disease

pylor/o: pylorus (opening between the stomach and duodenum)

pylorus: The region of the stomach at the junction with the duodenum.

pyrosis: Substernal pain or burning sensation, usually associated with regurgitation of gastric juice into the esophagus. Also called heartburn.

RDA: recommended daily/dietary allowance

rect/o: rectum

rectum: The distal segment of the large intestine, between the sigmoid colon and the anal canal.

retention: The ability of the digestive system to hold fluids and food.

riboflavin: Vitamin B2.

saliva: The clear, viscous fluid secreted by the salivary glands and mucous glands of the mouth. It serves to moisten the oral cavity, to initiate the digestion of starches, and to aid in the chewing and swallowing of food.

salivary ducts: Any of the ducts which transport saliva.

salivary glands: Glands that secrete saliva in the mouth. There are three pairs of salivary glands: parotid gland; sublingual gland and submandibular gland.

salmonella: A genus of gram-negative, rod-shaped bacteria. It causes food poisoning, enteric fevers, gastroenteritis, and bacteremia.

SB: small bowel

SBO: small bowel obstruction

scurvy: An acquired blood vessel disorder caused by severe deficiency of vitamin C, characterized by spongy, bleeding gums, bleeding under the skin, and extreme weakness.

sial/o: saliva

sialaden/o: salivary gland

sialadenitis: Inflammation of a salivary gland.

sialorrhea: Excessive salivary flow.

sigmoid: The distal part of the colon from the level of the iliac crest to the rectum.

sigmold/o: sigmoid colon

sito-: bread, food

stom/o: mouth

stoma-: mouth

stomach: A saclike digestive organ situated in the left upper quadrant of the abdomen between the termination of the esophagus and the beginning of the duodenum.

stomach ulcer: Ulceration of the gastric mucosa due to contact with gastric juice.

stomatitis: Inflammation of the soft tissues of the mouth. Canker sores are an example.

stool: Feces discharged from the anus.

sublingual gland: A salivary gland located under the tongue in the floor of the oral cavity.

sucrose: Cane or beet sugar.

supraglottitis: Inflammation of the of the laryngeal tissue above the glottis, particularly the epiglottis.

tenesmus: A straining but ineffective attempt to urinate or defecate.

tongue: A muscular organ in the mouth that is covered with pink tissue called mucosa, tiny bumps called papillae, and thousands of taste buds. It is vital for chewing, swallowing and for speech.

TPN: total parenteral nutrition

-tresia: perforation, opening

trismus: Lack of ability to open the mouth fully due to decreased range of motion of the muscles of mastication.

-trophic: food, nutrition

typhlitis: Inflammation of the cecum.

typhoid fever: An acute bacterial infection transmitted by contaminated water, milk or other foods, especially shellfish.

uran/o: hard palate

uvula: A fleshy extension at the back of the soft palate that hangs above the opening of the throat.

vomiting: The forcible expulsion of the contents of the stomach through the mouth.

weaning: The replacement of mother's milk in the diet of a young child with other food.

whey: The liquid components of milk that remain after the casein, fat, and fat soluble components have been removed.

zymo-: fermentation


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