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Glossary

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S

  • sterilisation

    Surgical procedures that make a person infertile i.e. unable to have children.

  • steriliser

    An instrument used to make objects sterile by killing or eliminating agents such as fungi, bacteria and viruses.

  • stertor

    A noisy inspiration occurring in coma or deep sleep, sometimes due to obstruction of the larynx or upper airways.

  • stethometer

    An apparatus for measuring the external movements of a given point of the chest wall, during respiration; also called thoracometer.

  • stethoscope

    A device which is used to listen to sounds produced by the human body. Ordinarily a stethoscope consists of rubber tubing in the shape of a Y.

  • sticker

    Adhesive-backed slips of paper or similar thin material, usually bearing messages or designs.

  • stigmata

    Bodily marks or sores believed to correspond to the crucifixion marks of Jesus Christ.

  • stomach

    J-shaped organ, lying to the left and slightly below the diaphragm in human beings; one of the organs of the digestive system. The stomach produces gastric juices that break down proteins.

  • stomach pump

    An apparatus for removing the contents of the stomach by means of suction. A stomach pumping is performed using a flexible rubber tube that is passed through the mouth and advanced to the stomach. This procedure includes the instillation of a balanced salt solution into the stomach (via the tube) followed by suctioning the fluid out of the stomach. It is an effective procedure in the treatment of toxic ingestions.

  • stone

    A hard solid made of undissolved minerals and found in the kidneys or bladder.

  • storage jar

    A jar used to store objects or substances.

  • streptococcus

    A group of bacteria that destroy red blood cells and cause diseases in humans, including scarlet fever.

  • strigil

    A metal or ivory instrument used to scrape skin. Used in ancient Greece and Rome to scrape the skin clear of dirt.

  • stromuhr

    An instrument for measuring the quantity of blood that flows through a blood vessel in a given time.

  • strophanthus

    A name for a group of shrubs from central Africa. One variation of strophanthus is used in a drug to stimulate the heart after heart failure.

  • strychnine

    A naturally occurring drug derived from trees. In small doses strychnine functions as a central nervous system stimulant, but in higher doses it is extremely poisonous.

  • suffrage

    The right to vote and own property

  • sulfa drug

    A group of antibiotics. Sulfa drugs were ‘wonder-drugs’ before penicillin and other antibiotics. They were used to treat diseases such as bronchitis and pneumonia.

  • sulphanilamide

    A form of sulphonamide used in the treatment of various bacterial infections.

  • sulphonamides

    Antibacterial drugs used to treat diseases like bronchitis and pneumonia, derived from sulphanilamide

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