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Diabetes and the Endocrine System Glossary

Terms used to explain Diabetes and the Endocrine System can sometimes be confusing. To help you fully understand the articles and features related to this very important health topic, we have compiled a glossary of terms that can help.

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Ablate

ab*late
Pronunciation: \a-ˈblāt\


Function: transitive verb
ab*lat*ed
ab*lat*ing
: to remove or destroy esp. by cutting or abrading <ablate diseased tissue>

Antidepressant

1an*ti*de*pres*sant
Pronunciation: \ˌant-i-di-ˈpres-ənt, ˌan-ˌtī-\


Function: adjective
: used or tending to relieve or prevent psychic depression

Arteriosclerosis

ar*te*rio*scle*ro*sis
Pronunciation: \är-ˌtir-ē-ō-sklə-ˈrō-səs\


Function: noun
pl -ro*ses
Pronunciation: \-ˌsēz\
: a chronic disease characterized by abnormal thickening and hardening of the arterial walls with resulting loss of elasticity compare atherosclerosis

Asthenia

as*the*nia
Pronunciation: \as-ˈthē-nē-ə\


Function: noun
: lack or loss of strength : see: debility

BPH

BPH
Function: abbreviation
benign prostatic hyperplasia; benign prostatic hypertrophy

Benign

be*nign
Pronunciation: \bi-ˈnīn\


Function: adjective

1: of a mild type or character that does not threaten health or life <benign malaria> <a benign tumor> compare malignant 1
2: having a good prognosis : responding favorably to treatment <a benign psychosis>

Biopsy

1bi*op*sy
Pronunciation: \ˈbī-ˌäp-sē\


Function: noun
pl -sies
: the removal and examination of tissue, cells, or fluids from the living body

Blood Sugar

blood sugar
Function: noun
: the glucose in the blood; also: its concentration (as in milligrams per 100 milliliters)

Body Mass Index

body mass index
Function: noun
: a measure of body fat that is the ratio of the weight of the body in kilograms to the square of its height in meters <a body mass index in adults of 25 to 29.9 is considered an indication of overweight, and 30 or more an indication of obesity> abbr. BMI—called also Quetelet index

Cancer

can*cer
Pronunciation: \ˈkan(t)-sər\


Function: noun

1: a malignant tumor of potentially unlimited growth that expands locally by invasion and systemically by metastasis
2: an abnormal state marked by a cancer

Cataract

cat*a*ract
Pronunciation: \ˈkat-ə-ˌrakt\


Function: noun
: a clouding of the lens of the eye or its surrounding transparent membrane that obstructs the passage of light

Chemotherapy

che*mo*ther*a*py
Pronunciation: \-ˈther-ə-pē\


Function: noun
pl -pies
: the use of chemical agents in the treatment or control of disease or mental disorder

Constipation

con*sti*pa*tion
Pronunciation: \ˌkän(t)-stə-ˈpā-shən\


Function: noun
: abnormally delayed or infrequent passage of dry hardened feces

Detumescence

de*tu*mes*cence
Pronunciation: \ˌdē-t(y)ü-ˈmes-ən(t)s\


Function: noun
: subsidence or diminution of swelling or erection

Diarrhea

di*ar*rhea
Function: noun
: abnormally frequent intestinal evacuations with more or less fluid stools

Digestive System

digestive system
Function: noun
: the bodily system concerned with the ingestion, digestion, and absorption of food : see: alimentary system

Endocrine Gland

endocrine gland
Function: noun
: a gland (as the thyroid or the pituitary) that produces an endocrine secretion —called also ductless gland, gland of internal secretion

Erection

erec*tion
Pronunciation: \i-ˈrek-shən\



Function: noun

1: the state marked by firm turgid form and erect position of a previously flaccid bodily part containing cavernous tissue when that tissue becomes dilated with blood
2: an occurrence of erection in the penis or clitoris

Fertility

fer*til*i*ty
Pronunciation: \(ˌ)fər-ˈtil-ət-ē\



Function: noun
pl -ties

1: the quality or state of being fertile
2: the birthrate of a population compare mortality 2b

Flaccid

flac*cid
Pronunciation: \ˈflas-əd, ˈflak-səd\


Function: adjective
: not firm or stiff; also: lacking normal or youthful firmness <flaccid muscles>

Glaucoma

glau*co*ma
Pronunciation: \glau-ˈkō-mə, glo-\


Function: noun
: a disease of the eye marked by increased pressure within the eyeball that can result in damage to the optic disk and gradual loss of vision

Hyperglycemia

hy*per*gly*ce*mia
Function: noun
: an excess of sugar in the blood

Hypoglycemia

hy*po*gly*ce*mia
Function: noun
: abnormal decrease of sugar in the blood

Impaired Glucose Tolerance

impaired glucose tolerance
Function: noun
: a condition in which an individual has higher than normal levels of glucose in the blood upon fasting or following a carbohydrate-rich meal or ingestion of a glucose test solution but not high enough to be diagnostic of diabetes mellitus

Impotence

im*po*tence
Pronunciation: \ˈim-pət-ən(t)s\



Function: noun

1: the quality or state of not being potent <drug-resistant bacteria are a virulent indicator of the growing impotence of antibiotics>
2: an abnormal physical or psychological state of a male characterized by inability to copulate because of failure to have or maintain an erection —called also erectile dysfunction

Libido

li*bi*do
Pronunciation: \lə-ˈbēd-(ˌ)ō also ˈlib-ə-ˌdō or lə-ˈbī-(ˌ)dō\


Function: noun
pl -dos

1: instinctual psychic energy that in psychoanalytic theory is derived from primitive biological urges (as for sexual pleasure or self-preservation) and that is expressed in conscious activity
2: sexual drive

Lobectomy

lo*bec*to*my
Pronunciation: \lō-ˈbek-tə-mē\


Function: noun
pl -mies
: surgical removal of a lobe of an organ (as a lung) or gland (as the thyroid); specif: excision of a lobe of the lung compare lobotomy

Malignant

ma*lig*nant
Pronunciation: \mə-ˈlig-nənt\


Function: adjective

1: tending to produce death or deterioration <malignant malaria> ; esp: tending to infiltrate, metastasize, and terminate fatally <malignant tumors> compare benign 1
2: of unfavorable prognosis : not responding favorably to treatment <psychotic reactions with a malignant trend>

Neuropathy

neu*rop*a*thy
Pronunciation: \n(y)u-ˈräp-ə-thē\


Function: noun
pl -thies
: an abnormal and usu. degenerative state of the nervous system or nerves; also: a systemic condition (as muscular atrophy) that stems from a neuropathy

Nitric Oxide

nitric oxide
Function: noun
: a poisonous colorless gas NO that occurs as a common air pollutant formed by the oxidation of atmospheric nitrogen and that is also formed by the oxidation of arginine in the mammalian body where it acts as a mediator of intracellular and intercellular communication regulating numerous biological processes (as vasodilation and neurotransmission)

Numbness

numb*ness
Function: noun
: reduced sensibility to touch <facial numbness>

Orgasm

1or*gasm
Pronunciation: \ˈor-ˌgaz-əm\


Function: noun
: the climax of sexual excitement that is usu. accompanied by ejaculation of semen in the male and by vaginal contractions in the female

Perineum

per*i*ne*um
Function: noun
pl -nea
also -naea
Pronunciation: \-ˈnē-ə\

: an area of tissue that marks externally the approximate boundary of the pelvic outlet and gives passage to the urogenital ducts and rectum; also: the area between the anus and the posterior part of the external genitalia esp. in the female

Peripheral Neuropathy

peripheral neuropathy
Function: noun
: a disease or degenerative state (as polyneuropathy) of the peripheral nerves in which motor, sensory, or vasomotor nerve fibers may be affected and which is marked by muscle weakness and atrophy, pain, and numbness

Peripheral Vascular Disease

peripheral vascular disease
Function: noun
: vascular disease (as Raynaud's disease and Buerger's disease) affecting blood vessels outside of the heart and esp. those vessels supplying the extremities; esp: see: peripheral arterial disease

Peyronie's Disease

Pey*ro*nie's disease
Pronunciation: \ˌpā-rə-ˈnēz-, pā-ˈrō-(ˌ)nēz-\



Function: noun
: the formation of fibrous plaques in one or both corpora cavernosa of the penis resulting in distortion or deflection of the erect organ

Priapism

pri*a*pism
Pronunciation: \ˈprī-ə-ˌpiz-əm\



Function: noun
: an abnormal, more or less persistent, and often painful erection of the penis; esp: one caused by disease rather than sexual desire

Prostate

2prostate
Function: adjective
: of, relating to, or being the prostate gland

Radiation Therapy

radiation therapy
Function: noun
: see: radiotherapy

Retinopathy

ret*i*nop*a*thy
Pronunciation: \ˌret-ən-ˈäp-ə-thē\


Function: noun
pl -thies
: any of various noninflammatory disorders of the retina including some that cause blindness <diabetic retinopathy>

Scrotum

scro*tum
Pronunciation: \ˈskrōt-əm\



Function: noun
pl scro*ta
Pronunciation: \-ə\>
or scrotums
: the external sac that in most mammals contains the testes

Semen

se*men
Pronunciation: \ˈsē-mən\


Function: noun
: a viscid whitish fluid of the male reproductive tract consisting of spermatozoa suspended in secretions of accessory glands (as of the prostate and Cowper's glands)

Stroke

Pronunciation: \ˈstrōk\



Function: noun
1: sudden diminution or loss of consciousness, sensation, and voluntary motion caused by rupture or obstruction (as by a clot) of a blood vessel of the brain —called also apoplexy, brain attack, cerebral accident, cerebrovascular accident

Testosterone

tes*tos*ter*one
Pronunciation: \te-ˈstäs-tə-ˌrōn\



Function: noun
: a male hormone that is a crystalline hydroxy steroid ketone C19H28O2 produced primarily by the testes or made synthetically and that is the main androgen responsible for inducing and maintaining male secondary sex characteristics

Thyroid Gland

thyroid gland
Function: noun
: see: thyroid 1

Thyroidectomy

thy*roid*ec*to*my
Pronunciation: \ˌthī-ˌroid-ˈek-tə-mē, -rəd-\


Function: noun
pl -mies
: surgical excision of thyroid gland tissue

Type 1 Diabetes

type 1 diabetes
Pronunciation: \ˌtīp-ˈwən-\


Function: noun
: diabetes of a form that usu. develops during childhood or adolescence and is characterized by a severe deficiency of insulin secretion resulting from atrophy of the islets of Langerhans and causing hyperglycemia and a marked tendency toward ketoacidosis —called also insulin-dependent diabetes, insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, juvenile diabetes, juvenile-onset diabetes, type 1 diabetes mellitus

Type 2 Diabetes

type 2 diabetes
Pronunciation: \-ˈtü-\


Function: noun
: diabetes mellitus of a common form that develops esp. in adults and most often in obese individuals and that is characterized by hyperglycemia resulting from impaired insulin utilization coupled with the body's inability to compensate with increased insulin production —called also adult-onset diabetes, late-onset diabetes, maturity-onset diabetes, non-insulin-dependent diabetes, non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, type 2 diabetes mellitus

Ulcer

2ulcer
Function: verb
ul*cered
ul*cer*ing
Pronunciation: \ˈəls-(ə-)riŋ\


: see: ulcerate

Urethra

ure*thra
Pronunciation: \yu-ˈrē-thrə\
Function: noun
1: the canal that in most mammals carries off the urine from the bladder and in the male serves also as a passageway for semen

Urinary Tract

urinary tract
Function: noun
: the tract through which urine passes and which consists of the renal tubules and renal pelvis of the kidney, the ureters, the bladder, and the urethra

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© 2011 Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. Published under license with Merriam-Webster, Inc.

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