Medical
Glossary


A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

E.
Eardrum

a thin, oval-shaped membrane that separates the inner ear from the outer ear and is responsible for transmitting sound waves

ECG (sometimes called an EKG)

an electrocardiogram, which is a record of the electrical impulses that trigger the heartbeat; used to diagnose heart disorders

Echocardiogram

an image of the heart that is created by high-frequency (ultrasound) sound waves

Eclampsia

a serious condition that occurs in late pregnancy, characterised by seizures in the woman

Ectopic

occurring at an abnormal position or time

Eczema

inflammation of the skin, usually causing itchiness and sometimes blisters and scaling; may be caused by allergies, but often occurs for no apparent reason

EEG

see Electroencephalography

Elective

describes a treatment or procedure that is not urgent and can be arranged at the patient's convenience

Electroencephalography

a procedure for recording the electrical impulses of brain activity

Embolism

the blockage of a blood vessel by an embolus

Embryo

a term used to describe a child in the womb from fertilisation to 8 weeks following fertilisation

Emetic

a substance that causes vomiting; used to treat some cases of poisoning and drug overdose

Emphysema

a chronic disease in which the small air sacs in the lungs (the alveoli) become damaged; characterised by difficulty breathing

Encephalitis

inflammation of the brain, usually caused by a virus; may be very mild and barely noticeable, but is usually serious and can progress from headache and fever to hallucinations, paralysis, and sometimes coma

Endarterectomy

surgery performed to remove the lining of an artery that has been narrowed by fatty tissue build-up

Endemic

describes a disease that is always present in a certain population of people

Endocarditis

inflammation of the inner lining of the heart, usually the heart valves; typically caused by an infection

Endocardium

the inner lining of the heart

Endocrine gland

a gland that secretes hormones into the bloodstream

Endogenous

arising from inside of the body

Endometrial polyp

a growth (usually noncancerous) occurring on the lining of the uterus

Endometriosis

a condition in which fragments of the endometrium are found in other pelvic organs

Endometrium

the membrane that lines the uterus

Endophthalmitis

inflammation of the inside of the eye

Endorphin

a group of chemicals produced in the brain that reduce pain and positively affect mood

Endoscope

a lighted instrument used to view the inside of a body cavity

Endothelium

the layer of flat cells that lines the blood and lymph vessels, the heart, and other structures in the body

Endotracheal tube

a plastic tube that is fed down into the trachea through the mouth or nose to supply oxygen to a person who is not breathing properly

Enteritis

inflammation of the small intestine, usually causing diarrhoea

Enterobiasis

infestation by a pinworm

Enuresis

the medical term for wetting the bed

Enzyme

a chemical, originating in a cell, that regulates reactions in the body

Epidemic

a term used to describe a disease that is rare then suddenly affects more people than usually expected

Epidermis

the outer layer of the skin

Epididymis

a long, coiled tube, exiting from the back of the testicle, in which sperm mature

Epidural anaesthesia

a method of pain relief in which a painkilling drug is injected into the space surrounding the spinal cord to block sensations in the abdomen and lower body

Epilepsy

a disorder of the nervous system in which abnormal electrical activity in the brain causes seizures

Epinephrine

a hormone produced by the adrenal glands in response to stress, exercise, or fear; increases heart rate and opens airways to improve breathing; also called adrenaline

Episcleritis

a patch of inflammation on the outer layer of the white of the eye

Episiotomy

a surgical procedure in which an incision is made in the tissue between the vagina and anus to prevent tearing of this tissue during childbirth

Epithelium

the layer of cells that covers the body and lines many organs

Epstein-Barr virus

a virus that is the cause of mononucleosis and is involved in Burkitt's lymphoma

Erysipelas

an infection caused by streptococci bacteria; characterised by fever and rash

Erythema

redness of the skin

Erythrocyte

a red blood cell

Erythrocyte sedimentation rate

a measure of the time it takes for red blood cells to collect at the bottom of a sample of blood; an elevated rate may mean that there is inflammation somewhere in the body

Erythroplakia

red patches in the mucous membranes of the mouth, throat, or voice box (larynx) that can become cancerous; risk factors include smoking pipes and chewing tobacco

Eustachian tube

the tube that connects the middle ear and the back of the nose, draining the middle ear and regulating air pressure

Euthanasia

painlessly ending the life of a patient with an incurable disease who requests to die

Euthyroid

Euthyroid means that levels of thyroid hormones are within the normal range.

Excision

the surgical removal of diseased tissue

Excretion

the process by which the body rids itself of waste

Exercise stress test

the monitoring of the heart during strenuous exercise, usually on a treadmill or exercise bicycle, to evaluate how the heart responds to stress

Exercise thallium test

an imaging test performed during and after an exercise stress test to evaluate functioning of the heart muscles

Exogenous

arising from outside of the body

Expectorant

a medication used to promote the coughing up of phlegm from the respiratory tract

Extensor muscle

a muscle that causes a joint or limb to straighten

External version

external repositioning of the foetus in the womb to the correct birth position

Extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy

a procedure performed to destroy kidney stones using external shock waves

Extradural anaesthesia

injection of an anaesthetic into the space outside the dura mater, the fibrous membrane that envelops the spinal cord

Medichecks Cookie policy

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience.

Read more Got it!