The latest research & treatment news about Hepatitis C infection, diagnosis, symptoms and treatment.

Glossary of Medical Terms – M

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
M
Molar
m
Meter
M1
Early stage of distant spread of a malignant tumor
Maceration
Soaking, Softening of tissues after death from sterile autodigestion by enzymes
Macro
Combining form meaning large or abnormal size or length
Macroparasites
Typically, the parasitic helminths and arthropods. In general, parasites which do not multiply within their definitive hosts but instead produce transmission stages (eggs and larvae) which pass into the external environment. Immune responses elicited against macroparasites generally depend on the number of parasites present in a given host and tends to be of a relatively transient nature. The key epidemiological measurement is generally the number of parasites per host. Such parasites are often found in a highly aggregated distribution
Macrophage
Immune system cell that scavenges bacterial and other foreign material in the blood and tissues, A type of white blood cell which engulfs particulate foreign-material, including living or dead bacteria
Macula
Stain, spot, or thickening
Macular Degeneration
Pigmentary disturbance in the macula lutea lying slightly lateral to the center of the retina in the eye, which brings the loss of central visual acuity
Macule
Small, flat spot
Maculopapular
Small spot-related
Magnesium
Essential mineral. Chief function of magnesium is to activate certain enzymes, especially those related to carbohydrate metabolism. Also to maintain the electrical potential across nerve and muscle membranes. Essential for proper heartbeat and nerve transmission. Magnesium controls many cellular functions. Involved in protein formation, DNA production and function and in the storage and release of energy in ATP. Magnesium is closely related to calcium and phosphorus in body function. The average adult body contains approximately one ounce of magnesium. It is the fifth mineral in abundance within the body–behind calcium, phosphorus, potassium and sodium. Although about 70 % of the body’s magnesium is contained in the teeth and bones, its most important functions are carried out by the remainder which is present in the cells of the soft tissues and in the fluid surrounding those cells
Magnesium Sulfates
Classified as minerals. Minerals are grouped into 2 types: macrominerals are found in fairly large amounts in the body; microminerals are found in smaller amounts (less than .005 percent of our body weight). Along with three microminerals (cobalt, molybdenum, and selenium), macrominerals of specific importance are calcium, chlorine, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, and sulfur. Magnesium occurs in both animal and plant tissue. It is essential as an enzyme activator, and is involved in the formation and maintenance of body protein
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
See MRI Scan
Ma Huang
Also called Ephedra. Directs the flow of blood to the muscles, increases the oxygen and nutrient supply resulting in greater energy and endurance. Slight stimulatory action on the central nervous system. This produces alertness, enhances mood, and reduces fatigue. Mobilizes white fat stores into the bloodstream where they are carried to the brown fat to be burned up and dissipated as heat. Dries up the sinuses and has a bronchial dilating effect, this helps to treat allergies, asthma and hay fever
Maitake Mushroom
Grifron–Called King of Mushrooms. Has the ability to lower blood pressure, which is beneficial to diabetics & obesity patients. Researchers believe that Maitake has anti-tumor effects against syngeneic tumors, helping to prevent the destruction of T-helper cells by HIV
Malabsorption
Poor digestion. Condition in which the intestine has a less than normal ability to digest or absorb foodstuffs, which reduces the nutrients a person receives. Unabsorbed food may cause gas and diarrhea
Malacia
Abnormal softening of a organ or structure (tissue)
Malaise
Vague illness, A generalized feeling of discomfort, uneasiness, illness, or lack of well-being that is often associated with a disease state
Malignant
Cancerous; can spread to other parts of the body
Malignant Fever
Fever causing severe deterioration or death
Manganese
Essential mineral found in trace amounts in tissues of the body. Adults normally contain an average of 10 to 20 milligrams of manganese in their bodies, most of which is contained in bone, the liver and the kidneys. Essential to several critical enzymes necessary for bone and blood formation, nerve function and protein metabolism. It is involved in the metabolism of fats and glucose and in the production of cholesterol. Also involved in the building and degrading of proteins and nucleic acid, biogenic amine metabolism, which involves the transmitting of nerve impulses and Manganese is also necessary for RNA chain initiation. An antioxidant nutrient which is important in the blood breakdown of amino acids and the production of energy. Necessary for the metabolism of Vitamin B-1 & Vitamin E. A deficiency of manganese may result in ataxia, convulsions, digestive problems, dizziness, hearing loss, paralysis, and blindness & deafness in infants
Manifest
Visible
Manifestation
Sign
MAO
Maximum Acid Output
Marshmallow
Quiets a cough and soothes sore throats, cuts, Boosts the immune system
Mass Action Transmission
Transmission of infection which occurs at a rate directly proportional to the number or density of both susceptibles and infecteds present
Massive
Solid
Mastocyte
Connective tissue cell
Mastocytosis
Group of rare diseases characterized by infiltrates of mast cells in the tissues and sometimes other organs
Mastodynia
Breast pain
Match
The compatibility between donor and recipient. In general, the more closely the recipient and donor match, the greater the potential for a successful transplant
Maternal Immunity
Immunity for a neonate provided by IgG antibody generated by a mother and passed across the placenta to the unborn offspring. This provides short lived protection (with a typical half life of 3-6 months) to the neonate. Also known as immunity
Matrix
Intracellular substance of a tissue or the tissue from which a structure develops
Matrix Protein
A structural protein of a virus particle which underlies the envelope and links it to the core
Maturation
Process of reaching full development or growth. The stage of viral replication at which a virus particle becomes infectious 
MB
Microbiological Assay, Methylene Blue
McBurney’s Point
An anatomical landmark in the right lower quadrant of the abdomen over the usual site of the appendix
MCFA
Medium Chain Fatty Acid
MCG
Microgram- a metric unit of measurement, l/1,000,000 of a gram
MCH
Mean Cell Hemoglobin
MCHC
Mean Cell Hemoglobin Concentration
mCi
Millicurie
MCT
Medium Chain Triglyceride
MCV
Mean Corpuscular Volume, average volume of erythrocytes. Mean Cell Volume (see below)
Meadowsweet
Lowers body temperature. Analgesic (pain-relieving) effect. Remedy for gastritis, heartburn, peptic ulcers and urinary tract infections. Relieve headaches. The Food and Drug Administration lists meadowsweet as an herb of undefined safety. European studies suggest the herb may stimulate uterine contractions. In addition, salicin has been associated with an increased risk of birth defects. Children under the age of 16 suffering from colds, chicken pox, or flu should not take Meadowsweet because of aspirin’s association with Reye’s Syndrome, a rare but potentially fatal condition. Although Meadowsweet itself has never been linked to Reye’s syndrome, it’s main healing ingredient is the same as aspirin’s, so the possibility for an increased risk exists
Mean Cell Volume
A standard part of the complete blood count, the mean cell volume (MCV) is the average volume of a red blood cell. This is a calculated value derived from the hematocrit and the red cell count (The hematocrit is the ratio of the volume of red cells to the volume of whole blood while the red cell count is the number of red blood cells in a volume of blood). The normal range for the mean cell volume is 86 – 98 femtoliters
Medial
Towards the midline of the body
Median
Average
Mediate
Indirect
Medical Evaluation
A medical assessment of a patient’s condition
Medicine
Art and science of preventing, diagnosing, and treating disease, and the maintenance of health
Medicinal
Substance used for treating disease
Medium Chain Triglycerides
One of the most concentrated sources of energy that the body uses. Because it is such a great energy source, Medium Chain Triglycerides can be used in place of carbohydrates in the diets of those who wish to restrict their intake of carbohydrates
Meds
Short for medications, or drugs
Medullary
Marrow-related
Megacolon
Colon enlargement
Megaloblastic
Large abnormal red blood cell
Megavitamin
Vitamin dosage that exceeds the amount needed for normal maintenance of life. Megavitamin dosages may be toxic and/or dangerous
Melanosis
Conditioned characterized by dark pigment deposits on the skin. Disorder of pigment metabolism
Melatonin
The only hormone secreted into the bloodstream by the Pineal gland. The hormone appears to inhibit numerous endocrine functions, including the gonadotropic hormones. Research exists on the efficacy of melatonin in treating jet lag and certain sleep disorders. Dosages greater than l milligram have been associated with drowsiness, headaches, disturbances in sleep/wake cycles and is contraindicated in those who are on antidepressive medication. It also negatively influences insulin utilization. Scientific studies indicate that Melatonin slows the aging process by fighting free-radical damage and rejuvenating the immune system. Melatonin also shows great promise as a treatment for many other diseases and conditions, such as: AIDS, Arthritis, Alzheimer’s Disease, High Cholesterol, and Hypertension
Melena
Dark, blood-stained stools or vomit. When a person is bleeding from an ulcer, consisting of black tarry stools indicative of upper GI bleeds
Memory Cells
Produced from B cell lymphocytes, they recognize previously encountered antigens, long term
Menkes’ Disease
A disorder of copper metabolism that is inherited as a recessive X-linked trait and is characterized by a deficiency of copper in the liver and of copper-containing proteins (as ceruloplasmin) which results in mental retardation, brittle kinky hair, and a fatal outcome early in life
Menorrhagia
Excessive uterine bleeding occurring at the regular intervals of menstruation, the period of flow being of greater than usual duration
Menses
Periodic discharge of blood, tissue fluid, mucous and epithelial cells, that usually lasts for 5 days; caused by the sudden reduction in hormone levels Also called menstrual cycle
Meperedine
Chemical name for the narcotic painkiller Demerol
mEq
Milliequivalent
MES
Mucosal Electrosensitivty
Mesenteric
Involving the skin attaching various organs to the body
Metabolic Acidosis
A metabolic derangement of acid-base balance where the blood pH is abnormally low. Causes include cardiogenic shock, hemorrhagic shock, sepsis, severe dehydration, toxic ingestion (e.g. isopropyl alcohol, methanol), alcoholic ketoacidosis, lactic acidosis, renal failure, and diabetic ketoacidosis. Respiratory acidosis will occur if the lungs are not ventilating properly
Metabolism
Sum of all the chemical and physical changes that take place within the body and enable its continued growth and functioning. Chemical process taking place in living tissues, necessary for the maintenance of the living organism, the sum of the processes in the buildup and destruction of protoplasm; the chemical changes in living cells by which energy is provided for vital processes and activities and new material is assimilated
Metabolism, Basal
Turnover of energy in a fasting and resting organism using energy solely to maintain vital cellular activity, respiration, and circulation as measured by the basal metabolic rate
Metabolite
Substance produced by metabolism. Products of chemical reactions within body cells
Metabolization
Processing
Metamyelocyte
An intermediate stage in the development of a mature white blood cell
Metaplasia
Abnormal tissue change
Metastasis
Disease site transfer, The spread of cancer from one part of the body to another. Cells in the metastatic (second) tumor are like those in the original (primary) tumor
Metastatic
Spread from a primary site of disease to distant parts of the body
Meteorism
Abdominal gas
Methionine
Essential amino acid. Dietary source of sulfur and methyl groups. Important for growth, healthy nails and skin and the synthesis of taurine, cysteine, phosphatidylcholine (lecithin), bile, carnitine and endorphins. Antioxidant nutrient and lipotropic agent which promotes the physiological utilization of fat. Methionine is a principle supplier of sulfur which prevents disorders of the hair, skin and nails; helps lower cholesterol levels by increasing the liver’s production of lecithin; reduces liver fat and protects the kidneys; is a natural chelating agent for heavy metals; regulates the formation of ammonia and creates ammonia-free urine which reduces bladder irritation, influences hair follicles & promotes hair growth  
Metrorrhagia
Breakthrough bleeding
mg
Milligram. A metric unit of measurement, l/1000 of a gram
Mg
Magnesium
MI
Myocardial Infarction
MIC
Minimum Inhibitory Concentration
Micro
Combining form meaning small or minute
Microcirculation
Blood flow in fine vessels
Microemulsion
A suspension or mixture of tiny droplets of one liquid in a second liquid, such as the smooth mixture that is formed when Neoral® (cyclosporine capsules and oral solution for microemulsion) combines with fluids in the digestive system
Microgram
Millionth of a gram
Micrography
Microscope examination
Micron
Unit of length in the metric system equal to one-thousandth of a millimeter
Microparasites
Typically, viruses, bacteria, fungi and protozoa. More generally, parasites which multiply within their definitive hosts. Microparasites are characterized by small size, short generation times, and a tendency to induce immunity to reinfection in those hosts that survive. The duration of infection is usually short in relation to the lifespan of the host, but there are important exceptions, such as the slow viruses
Microsomes, Liver
In the hepatocyte, any of the vesicular fragments of endoplasmic reticulum formed after disruption and centrifugation of cells
Microvillus
Bump on a cell
Micturition
Urination
Milk Thistle
Silybum Marianum. Also called Marian, St. Mary’s, and Our Lady’s Thistle. Named Silybum for its large purple thistle-like flower heads. Both the plant structures and seeds have been used to positively influence liver function and as a general tonic. Numerous studies have proven that this plant with its active Silymarin constituent has tremendous therapeutic application. Silymarin and component silybin function as antioxidants, protecting cell membranes from free-radical-mediated oxidative damage. This type of damage is known as lipid peroxidation. Most liver toxins produce their damaging effects by free radical mechanisms. Both silymarin and silybin protect red blood cell membranes against lipid peroxidation and hemolysis (breaking down of the red blood cells) caused by certain red blood cell poisons
Milligrams–Mg
There are 1,000 milligrams in 1 gram. Mg is the abbreviation
Milliliter-mL
One thousandths of a liter. Same liquid volume as a cubic centimeter (cc)
min
Minute
Mineral(s)
Plays a vital role in regulating many body functions. Minerals are constituents of the bones, teeth, soft tissue, muscle, blood, and nerve cells. They are vital to overall mental and physical well-being. Regulate electrolyte balance and hormonal production, and they strengthen skeletal structures. Vitamins cannot be assimilated without the aid of minerals
Mint
Common species of mint include American Mint, Bergamot Mint, Corn Mint, Curled Mint, Horsemint, Mint, Peppermint, Round-Leaved Horsemint, Spearmint, Wild Mint, and Wild Water Mint
Miscible
Mixable
Mitochondria
Compartmentalized, double membrane, self-reproducing organelles present in the cytoplasm of almost all living cells
Mitochondria, Liver
Mitochondria in hepatocytes. In all mitochondria, there is an outer membrane and an inner membrane, creating two separate mitochondrial compartments: the internal matrix space and a much narrower intermembrane space. In the liver mitochondrion, an estimated 67% of the total mitochondrial proteins is located in the matrix
Mitochondrion
(pl. mitochondria) Structure inside a cell that is the location of the cell’s energy production machinery
Mitosis
Nuclear division, when cells divide
mIU
Milli-International Unit
Mg
Milligrams. There are 1,000 milligrams in a gram
mL
Milliliter
mm
Millimeter
MM
Mucous Membranes, Muscularis Mucosa
mmol
Millimole
mo
Month
MO
Mineral Oil
Moiety
A half, A part, portion, or share
Molecular Epidemiology
The use of nucleotide sequence information to study the diversity and distribution of virus populations
Molecule
Smallest fundamental unit of a substance which can exist in a free state and still retain the chemical properties of the substance. A molecule consists of a combination of atoms
mol wt
Molecular Weight
Molybdenum
Essential mineral. Key component of at least three enzymes: xanthine oxidase, aldehyde oxidase and sulfite oxidase. These enzymes are involved with carbohydrate metabolism, fat oxidation and urine metabolism. The average adult has about nine milligrams of molybdenum concentrated mostly in the liver, kidney, adrenal glands, bones and skin. Molybdenum deficiencies are associated with esophageal cancer, sexual impotency and tooth decay
Monocyte
Large mononuclear leukocyte
Monocytes
Monocytosis is seen in the recovery phase of many acute infections. It is also seen in diseases characterized by chronic granulomatous inflammation (TB, syphilis, brucellosis, Crohn’s disease, and sarcoidosis), ulcerative colitis, systemic lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, polyarteritis nodosa, and many hematologic neoplasms. Poisoning by carbon disulfide, phosphorus, and tetrachloroethane, as well as administration of griseofulvin, haloperidol, and methsuximide, may cause monocytosis. Monocytopenia is generally not a clinical problem
Monocyte Chemoattractant Protein-1
A chemokine that is a chemoattractant for human monocytes and may also cause cellular activation of specific functions related to host defense. It is produced by leukocytes of both monocyte and lymphocyte lineage and by fibroblasts during tissue injury
Monogamous
Having one, long-term sexual partner
Monotherapy
One drug therapy & Therapy with one drug or agent
Monovalent
Specific for one antigen
Montmorillonite Clay
Often included in herbal formulations that deal with respiratory support. Highly adsorbent (not absorbent). By quickly neutralizing allergens before these foreign invaders can attach themselves to blood cells, adsorptive surfaces prevent allergic reactions
MOPP
Mechlorethamine, Vincristine, Procarbazine, Prednisone
Morbidity
Diseased state, State of ill-health produced by a disease
Mormon Tea
Ephedra Trifurca–Decongestant for hayfever sufferers. Decreases appetite, Elevates mood, Helps body dispose of excess fluid by increasing amount of urine produced, Increases blood pressure, Increases heart rate, Stimulates central nervous system, Stimulates energy, Treats fatigue. Don’t take if you are pregnant, think you may be pregnant or plan pregnancy in the near future or if you are breastfeeding or have diabetes mellitus
Morphew
Gelatinous substance that swells in water without dissolving and forms a slimy mass; used as an adhesive or demulcent
Morphology of Blood Cells
Microscopic characteristics
Mortality Rate
The per capita death rate in a population. The mortality rate is the reciprocal of the population life expectancy
mOsm
Milliosmole
Moss Spores
Also called American Ground Pine–Has properties much like that of the European Ground Pine. A powerful diuretic, promoting urine and removing obstructions of the spleen and liver. A valuable remedy in jaundice, rheumatism and most of chronic diseases. A decoction of this plant, combined with Dandelion and Agrimony, is highly recommended for liver complaints and obstructions
Mother of Thyme
Used for respiratory problems, helps to clear mucous congestion from the respiratory passages and lungs . A good tonic for the stomach and nerves, used for gastrointestinal problems such as mild gastritis, enteritis, painful menstruation and stomach cramps. Antispasmodic, Carminative, Expectorant, Rubefacient, Tonic. As bath additive made from the decoction it stimulates the flow of blood toward the surface of the body and relieves nervous exhaustion. An infusion of leaves is said to relieve the headache of a hangover. Said to be useful in breaking the alcoholic habit by causing diarrhea, hunger, sweating, thirst, and vomiting, along with a revulsion for alcohol. Also recommended for anemia, chlorosis, and insomnia. Used externally, alcoholic extracts are helpful for bruises, rheumatism stab wounds, and tumors
Motherwort
Cardiac tonic, been shown to be hypotensive, sedative, and antispasmodic. Calms palpitations and normalizes heart function in general
Motility
Ability to move; all movements of the intestines
Motor
Pertaining to movement
MRC
Medical Research Council (units)
MRI Scan
Test that uses a magnet linked to a computer to create pictures of areas inside the body. Also called magnetic resonance imaging
mRNA-messenger RNA
All cells store their permanent genetic information in DNA, due to the inherent stability of the DNA molecule. RNA is used to transmit this information to the rest of the cell . DNA information is copied into RNA, which can be read out by the cell’s ribsomes. This RNA is then dissoved into its component molecules and reused in the creation of new RNA. These temporary RNA copies of DNA information are known as messenger RNA (mRNA). Messenger RNA, translated on ribosomes to produce proteins
Mucilages
Kind of dietary fiber. Similar to plant gums, mucilages are water soluble, sticky substances that are found in plants, especially seeds
Mucilaginous
Resembling a mucilage; slimy, sticky
Mucopolysaccharide
Carbohydrates that act as support structures in connective tissue in the body
Mucosa
Membrane consisting of mucus-producing cells, typically found lining the body orifices, stomach and bowel
Mucous Membrane
The membrane lining those cavities and canals communicating with the air. It is kept moist by the secretions of various types of glands
Muirapauma Root — Ptychopetalum Olacoides
Helps with gastrointestinal and reproductive disorders. Has anti-rheumatic properties and can be used for treating stress and trauma. Regarded as one of the best herbs to use for erectile dysfunction
Mullein
Effective as a cough suppressant, sore throat soother, hemorrhoidal pain and wound healer. Anyone with a history of cancer should not take Mullein internally
Multicelluar
Composed of numerous cells
Multiple Infection
An infection in which an individual is infected by parasites of more than one species
Muscle Wasting
Loss of muscle bulk because of disuse or pathological process
Musculature
Muscles
Mustard Seed
Sinapis Alba. Enhances the stimulation process, supports weight loss
Mutual Support/Help Group
Group of people having the same problem(s) who meet on a regular basis to share information, fears, experiences, tips on coping, provide each other with emotional support
Mutagenic
Causing genetic mutation, Causing alterations in genetic material
Mutate
When cells divide or viruses multiply, their genetic material must be copied. Sometimes mistakes are made when this happens and the resulting new cell or virus is different in some way. This is important for viruses because mutation can fool the immune system into not recognizing the virus
Mutation
Process in which a gene undergoes a permanent, heritable structural change. A relatively permanent change in hereditary material involving either a physical change in chromosome relations or a biochemical change in the codons that make up genes; also : the process of producing a mutation. An individual, trait or strain, resulting from mutation
Mutation, Gene
Point Mutation
Mutation, Point
Also called Gene Mutation, mutation due to reorganization within a gene (as by addition, deletion or substitution, of a nucleotide)
Mutation, Somatic
Mutation occurring in a somatic cell
Myalgia
Muscle pain
Myasthenia
Muscle weakness
Mycobacterium
Bacteria
Myrrh Gum
Normalizes mucous membrane activity. Used for digestion, infection, and vaginitis. Good mouthwash and gargle for sores in the mouth & throat, asthma, coughs, sore teeth & gums, and other chest problems. Can be taken internally for bad breath, loose teeth, and weak gums
Myelin
Substance made of protein and lipid (fat) that protects the nerves, especially in the brain
Myelofibrosis
An anemic condition in which bone marrow becomes fibrotic and the liver and spleen usually exhibit a development of blood cell precursors
Myelosuppression
Stopping bone marrow activity
Myelotoxic
Destructive to bone marrow
Myoma
Benign tumor made up of muscular elements
Myositis
Muscle inflammation
Myxedema
Condition characterized by dry, waxy swelling of the skin with abnormal deposits of glycosaminoglycans in the skin (mucinosis) and other tissues, and associated with primary hypothyroidism
Myxoma
Benign tumor composed of primitive connective tissue cells and stroma

© Vikki Shaw