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Glossary

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C

  • cabinet chair

    A piece of furniture that conceals a chamber pot. Used as a toilet.

  • cadaver

    A dead body, usually one being used in medical research.

  • Caesarian section

    A caesarean section is a common surgical procedure. Incisions are made through a pregnant woman's abdomen and uterus to deliver her baby.

  • caffeine

    A mild stimulant that is found in tea and coffee. It is often included, in small doses, in pain relief preparations, and is claimed to increase its effects.

  • calculator

    Small electronic or mechanical device that performs calculations, requiring manual action for each individual operation.

  • calomel

    A white powder that is an example of a mercury compound. It was formerly swallowed and used as a laxative.

  • camphor

    An aromatic substance obtained from the wood of a southeast Asian tree (Cinnamomum camphora) or produced artificially. When applied to the skin it produces a cooling effect. Camphor can be used to relieve the pain of sprains, backache, rheumatism, and headaches.

  • cancer

    Any cancerous tumour. It arises from the abnormal and uncontrolled division of cells which then invade and destroy the surrounding tissues. Cancer cells spread and can form secondary tumours some distance from the original.

  • cannula

    A tube for insertion into a duct or cavity in order to drain off fluid or give medication.

  • canopic jar

    Stone or ceramic jars in which the ancient Egyptians preserved the internal organs of a deceased person as part of their burial practices.

  • cap - headgear

    Brimless head covering, usually made with a visor.

  • capillary electrometer

    An instrument used to measure very small amounts of voltage.

  • capillary tube

    A glass tube with a very small internal diameter.

  • carbolic acid

    A strong disinfectant used for cleansing wounds. It is rarely used today, although it can still be found in mouthwash.

  • carbolic spray

    A disinfectant spray using carbolic acid that was used by Joseph Lister around 1870. Sprayed around the surgical theatre, it could prevent the spread of germs.

  • card

    The term card primarily refers to cardboard or a piece of cardboard. More generally, the term can refer to any of various small flat objects, typically made from heavy paper or plastic.

  • card holder

    Devices or contrivances by which, or containers in which, something is held i.e. a card.

  • cardiac catheter

    A catheter that can be passed into the heart through a vein or artery, to withdraw samples of blood, measure pressures within the heart's chambers or great vessels, and inject contrast media

  • cardiac pacemaker

    Refers to the cells which emit impulses that control the contractions of the heart, regulating its beat. Can also refer to devices used to create these impulses artificially, if the heart’s ability to do so has been damaged.

  • cardiology

    The study of diseases affecting the heart and blood vessels.

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