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- A circumscribed collection of pus.
NEURINOMAS - Benign tumor of the hearing nerve (eighth nerve).
- Disorder marked by progressive enlargement of the head,
face, hands, feet, and thorax, due to the excessive secretion
of growth hormone.
- A benign growth formed of glandular tissue.
- Absence of the ability to recognize the form and nature
of persons and things.
- Loss of the power of writing due either to muscular in
or to an inability to phrase thought.
- Loss of vision without discoverable lesion in the eye structures
or optic nerve. Amaurosis fugax - temporary blindness occurring
in short periods.
- Absence of the menses due to causes other than pregnancy
or advancing age.
- Loss of memory caused by brain damage or by severe emotional
- Loss of sensibility to pain, loss of response to a painful
- In the case of a body cell, a reversion to a more primitive
condition. A term used to denote the alteration in cell character
which constitutes malignancy.
- A communication, direct or indirect: A joining together.
In the nervous system a jointing of nerves or blood vessels.
- Physician who administers pain-killing medications during
- Absence of the greater part of the brain, often with skull
- Loss of sensation of a body part; or of the body when induced
by the administration of a drug.
Physician who administers pain-killing medications during
- Dilation of an artery, formed by a circumscribed enlargement
of its wall. Saccular (berry) aneurysm - sac-like bulging
on one side of an artery usually arising at an arterial branching.
- a study which shows the blood vessels leading to and in
the brain by injecting a dye or contrast substance through
a catheter placed in the artery in the leg.
- Radiography of blood vessels using the injection of material
opaque to x-rays to give better definition to the vessels.
- Loss of appetite; a condition marked by loss of appetite
leading to weight loss.
- Without the sense of smell.
- Total lack of oxygen supply.
- A medication that prevents coagulation of the blood.
- An agent which reduces the output of urine. Antidiuretic
hormone (ADH) is formed in the hypothalamus and stored in
the posterior pituitary gland. Its secretion reduces urine
- Difficulty with, or loss of use of language, in any of several
ways including reading, writing or speaking. Failure of understanding
of the written, printed or spoken word not related to intelligence
but to specific lesions in the brain.
- Cessation of respiration; inability to get one's breath.
- A sudden event. Often used as equivalent to stroke.
- Middle layer of membranes covering the brain and spinal
- Inflammation of the arachnoid membrane, most commonly seen
within the spinal cord around the spinal cord and cauda equina.
- (Cortical) - A part of the brain having a special function
* Motor a. - The cortical portion of the brain controlling
* Sensory a. - The cortical portion, controlling sensation.
- See angiography.
- Thickening and calcification of the arterial wall with loss
of elasticity and contractility.
- Relating to both arteries and veins.
MALFORMATION - Collection of blood vessels with one or several
abnormal communications between arteries and veins which may
cause hemorrhage or seizures.
- Cell which supports the nerve cells (neurons) of the brain
and spinal cord.
- Tumor within the substance of the brain or spinal cord made
up of astrocytes - often classified from Grade I (slow-growing)
to Grade III (rapid-growing).
- A loss of muscular coordination, abnormal clumsiness.
- A condition in which there is a succession of slow, writhing,
involuntary movements of the fingers and hands, and sometimes
of the toes and feet.
- A wasting of the tissues of a body part.
NERVOUS SYSTEM - Involuntary nervous system, also termed the
vegetative nervous system. A system of nerve cells whose activities
are beyond voluntary control.
- Non-vascular, not provided with blood vessels.
- The part of a nerve cell that usually sends signals to other
nerves or structures.
- Causing the death of bacteria.
- Inhibiting or retarding the growth of bacteria.
PALSY - Paralysis of facial muscles (usually one side) due
to facial nerve dysfunction of unknown cause.
- Removal of a small portion of tissue, usually for the purpose
of making a diagnosis.
- The barrier which exists between the blood and the cerebrospinal
fluid which prevents the passage of various substances from
the bloodstream to the brain.
- Slowness of the heart rate.
- Slowness in movement.
SYNDROME - Loss of sensation of touch, position sense, and
movement on the side of a spinal cord lesion, with loss of
pain sensation on the other side. Caused by a lesion limited
to one side of spinal cord.
- Cancer, a malignant growth of epithelial or gland cells.
ARTERY - Large artery on either side of the neck which supplies
most of the cerebral hemisphere.
SINUS - Slight dilatation on the common carotid artery at
its bifurcation containing nerve cells sensitive to blood
pressure. Stimulation can cause slowing of the heart, vasodilatation
and a fall in blood pressure.
TUNNEL - Space under a ligament in wrist through which the
median nerve enters the palm of the hand.
SCAN - (computed tomography scan): A diagnostic imaging technique
in which a computer reads x-rays to create a three-dimensional
map of soft tissue or bone.
- a small tube used to inject a dye to see the blood vessles,
similar to that used for looking at vessels in the heart.
EQUINA - The bundle of spinal nerve roots arising from the
end of the spinal cord and filling the lower part of the spinal
canal(from approximately the thoraco-lumbar junction down).
NUCLEUS - part of the basal ganglia which are brain cells
that lie deep in the brain.
- The lower part of the brain which is beneath the posterior
portion of the cerebrum and regulates unconscious coordination
FLUID - Water-like fluid produced in the brain that circulates
around and protects the brain and spinal cord.
- The principal portion of the brain, which occupies the major
portion of the interior of the skull and controls conscious
movement, sensation and thought.
- Of or relating to the neck.
(OPTIC) - Crossing of visual fibers as they head toward the
opposite side of the brain. For each optic nerve most of the
visual fibers cross to the opposite side, some run directly
backward on each side without crossing.
- A disorder, usually of childhood, characterized by irregular,
spasmodic involuntary movements of the limbs or facial muscles.
PLEXUS - A vascular structure in the ventricles of the brain
which produces cerebrospinal fluid.
- The small bone at the end of the spinal column in man, formed
by the fusion of four rudimentary vertebrae. The "tail
- A state of profound unconsciousness from which one cannot
TOMOGRAPHY (CT) SCAN- A diagnostic imaging technique in which
a computer reads x-rays to create a three-dimensional map
of soft tissue or bone.
- A disruption, usually temporary, of neurological function
resulting from a blow or violent shaking.
MEDIUM - Any material (usually opaque to x-rays) employed
to delineate or define a structure during a radiological
- A bruise; an area in which blood that has leaked out of
blood vessels is mixed with brain tissue.
SUTURE - The line of junction of the frontal bones and the
parietal bones of the skull.
- The external layer of gray matter covering the hemispheres
of the cerebrum and cerebellum.
- The part of the skull that holds the brain.
- Excision of a portion of the skull.
- Congenital tumor arising from the embryonic duct between
the brain and pharynx.
- The operative repair of a defect of the skull.
- Premature closure of cranial sutures, limiting or distorting
the growth of the skull.
- Opening of the skull, usually by creating a flap of bone.
- Cerebrospinal Fluid.
SKULL FRACTURE - A break in the bones of the head in which
some bone is pushed inward, possibly pushing on or cutting
into the brain.
INSIPIDUS - Excretion of large amounts of urine of low specific
gravity. The inability to concentrate urine.
AXONAL INJURY - Damage to the axons of many nerve cells that
lie in different parts of the brain.
BRAIN INJURY - Damage to the brain that can affect many
of the brain, often in a subtle fashion; examples include
diffuse axonal injury and inadequate blood flow.
- Dilantin; a medication used to control seizures.
- Double vision, due usually to weakness or paralysis of one
or more of the extra-ocular muscles.
- The intervertebral disc - cartilaginous cushion found between
the vertebrae of the spinal column. It may bulge beyond the
vertebral body and compress the nearby nerve root, causing
pain. The terms "slipped disc", "ruptured disc"
and "herniated disc" are often used interchangeably
even though there are subtle differences.
- the round balloon like portion of the aneurysm which usually
arises from the artery from a smaller portion called the neck
of the aneurysm.
- A non-invasive study which uses sound waves to show the
flow in a blood vessel and can be used to determine the degree
of narrowing (percent stenosis) of the vessel. A wand is placed
on the skin over the vessel to be imaged. This study has no
risks and is not painful.
- Dura mater.
MATER - A tough fibrous membrane which covers the brain and
spinal cord, but is separated from them by a small space.
- A condition in which a disagreeable sensation is produced
by ordinary touch, temperature or movement.
- Difficulty in the use of language due to a brain lesion
without mental impairment.
MUSCULORM DEFORMANS - An affliction occurring especially in
children, marked by muscular contractions producing distortions
of the spin and hips.
- An excessive accumulation of fluid generally in extracellular.
(EEG) - The study of the electrical currents set up by brain
actions; the record made is called an electroencephalogram.
(EMG) - A method of recording the electrical currents generated
in a muscle during its contraction.
- Removal of fatty or cholesterol plaques and calcified deposits
from the internal wall of an artery.
GLAND - A gland which furnishes an internal secretion, usually
having an effect on another organ.
- Any disease due to abnormality of quantity or quality in
one or more of the internal gladular secretions.
- The membrane lining the cerebral ventricles of the brain
and central canal of the spinal cord.
- A growth in the brain or spinal cord arising from ependymal
- Immediately outside the dura mater. Same as extradural.
HEMATOMA - A blood clot between the dura mater and the inside
of the skull.
- Disorder characterized by abnormal electrical discharges
in the brain, causing abnormal sensation, movement or level
(CEREBRI) - An extension of dura between the right and left
hemispheres of the brain.
- Normal openings in he skull of infants; the largest of these
is the anterior fontanel or "soft spot" in the middle
of the head.
- Surgical opening or enlargement of the bony opening traversed
by a nerve root as it leaves the spinal canal.
ANEURYSM - a sausage-like enlargement of the vessel
- The discharge of milk from the breasts.
KNIFE - Equipment that precisely delivers a concentrated dose
of radiation to a predetermined target using gamma rays.
- Glasgow Coma Scale.
COMA SCALE - The most widely used system of classifying the
severity of head injuries or other neurologic diseases.
OUTCOME SCALE - A widely used system of classifying outcome
after head injury or other neurologic diseases.
(Also termed neuroglia) - The major support cells of the brain.
These cells are involved in the nutrition and maintenance
of the nerve cells.
- A tumor formed by glial cells.
- A rapidly growing tumor composed of primitive glial cells,
mainly arising from astrocytes.
PALLIDUS - part of the basal ganglia which are brain cells
that lie deep in the brain.
- An aggregation of multiple, dilated, blood vessels.
- A blood clot.
- Loss of vision of one-half of the visual field.
- Atrophy of half of an organ or half of the body.
- Paralysis of one side of the body.
- Bleeding due to the escape of blood from a blood vessel.
NUCLEUS PULPOSUS (HNP) - Extrusion of the central portion
of an intervertebral disc through the outer cartilaginous
ring. The material can compress the spinal cord or nerves
in or exiting the spinal canal.
- A chemical substance formed in one gland or part of the
body and carried by the blood to another organ which it stimulates
to functional activity.
- A condition, often congenital, marked by abnormal and excessive
accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid in the cerebral ventricles.
This dilates the ventricles and in infants and young children
causes the head to enlarge.
- Expansion of the spinal cord due to increased size of the
central canal of the cord which is filled with CSF.
- Abnormal acuteness of hearing or auditory sensation.
- Excessive sensibility to touch, pain or other stimuli.
- High blood pressure
- A collection of specialized nerve cells at the base of the
brain which controls the anterior and posterior pituitary
secretions, and is involved in other basic regulatory functions
such as temperature control and attention.
- A stalk extending from the base of the brain to the pituitary
BALLOON COUNTER PULSATION DEVICE - a pump which is inserted
into the main vessel of the body, the aorta, to help the heart
deliver blood to critical organs such as the brain or kidneys.
CATHETERIZATION ANGIOGRAPHY - An invasive study in which a
catheter (a small tube) is placed in the artery and contrast
material is injected to which makes the blood vessels visible
on an X-Ray image. The catheter is inserted in the groin into
the femoral artery (the artery to the leg) through a needle,
and is guided into the arteries in the neck and head. This
study is associated with a very small (less than 0.05 % chance
of serious complications) and requires the patient to lie
in bed for approximately six hours to allow the leg vessel
HEMATOMA - A blood clot within the brain.
PRESSURE (ICP) - The overall pressure inside the skull.
CISTERNOGRAPHY - administration of a contrast dye into the
ventricles which are chambers in the brain that contain brain
- Inadequate circulation of blood generally due to a blockage
of an artery.
VEINS - The major veins on each side of the neck draining
blood from the head towards the heart.
- The internal ear, comprising the semi-circular canals, vestibule
- The flattened or arched part of the vertebral arch, forming
the roof of the spinal canal.
- Excision of one or more laminae of the vertebrae.
- An opening made in a lamina.
- Two thin layers of fine tissue covering the brain and spinal
cord (The pia mater and arachnoid).
- Inflammation of the membranes covering the brain and spinal
- Disturbance of the white matter of the brain.
- An inflammation of the white matter of the brain.
ACCELERATOR - Equipment that precisely delivers a concentrated
dose of radiation to a predetermined target using x-rays.
- A benign fatty tumor, usually composed of mature fat cells.
- Curvature of the spine with the convexity forward.
DRAIN - A device (usually a long, thin, flexible tube) inserted
through the skin into the cerebrospinal fluid space of the
lower back; provides a method of draining cerebrospinal fluid.
RESONANCE ANGIOGRAPHY (MRA) - A non-invasive study which is
conducted in a Magnetic Resonance Imager (MRI). The magnetic
images are assembled by a computer to provide an image of
the arteries in the head and neck. No contrast material is
needed, but some patients may experience claustrophobia in
RESONANCE IMAGING (MRI) - Diagnostic test that produces three-dimensional
images of body structures using powerful magnets and computer
technology rather than x-rays.
NERVE - The nerve formed from the brachial plexus that supplies
muscles in the anterior forearm and thumb, as well as, sensation
of the hand. It may be compressed or trapped at the wrist
in carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Tumor composed of medulloblasts which are cells which develop
in the roof of the fourth ventricle (medullary velum).
- The three membranes covering the spinal cord and brain termed
dura mater, arachnoid mater and pia mater.
- A firm, often vascular, tumor arising from the coverings
of the brain.
- An infection or inflammation of the membranes covering the
brain and spinal cord.
- A protrusion of the coverings of the spinal cord or brain
through a defect in the skull or vertebral column.
- An inflammation or infection of the brain and meninges.
- A protrusion of both the meninges and brain tissue through
a skull defect.
- Magnetic Resonance Angiography. A non-invasive study which
is conducted in a Magnetic Resonance Imager (MRI). The magnetic
images are assembled by a computer to provide an image of
the arteries in the head and neck. No contrast material is
needed, but some patients may experience claustrophobia in
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging - Scanning technique for views
of the brain or spinal cord. No radiation is involved, but
rather pulsed magnetic waves are used to delineate the structures
within the brain.
- The fat-like substance which surrounds the axon of nerve
fibers and forms an insulating material.
- An x-ray of the spinal canal following injection of a contrast
material into the surrounding cerebrospinal fluid spaces.
- Any functional or pathologic disturbance in the spinal cord.
- A protrusion of the spinal cord and its coverings through
a defect in the vertebral column.
- Any disease of muscle.
- A paroxysmal pain extending along the course of one or more
- Excision of part of a nerve.
- Inflammation of a nerve; may also be used to denote non-inflammatory
nerve lesions of the peripheral nervous system.
- Tumor of sympathetic nervous system origin, found mostly
in infants and children.
- A tumor of the peripheral nerves due to an abnormal collection
of fibrous and insulating cells.
- A familial condition characterized by developmental
in the nervous system, muscles and skin, marked by numerous
tumors affecting these organ system.
- The posterior lobe of the pituitary gland.
- Removal of scar or reactive tissue from a nerve or nerve
- A tumor or new growth largely made up of nerve fibers and
- Any functional or pathologic disturbance in the peripheral
- Involuntary rapid movement of the eyes in the horizontal,
vertical or rotary planes of the eyeball.
- The back part of the head.
- Non-nerve cells, (see glia) forming part of the supporting
structure of the central nervous system.
- A growth of new cells derived from the oligodendroglia.
- Paralysis of one or more of the eye muscles.
- A benign tumor of bone.
- Inflammation of bone due to infection, which may be localized
- Swelling of the optic nerve head, can be seen in the back
of the retina during eye examination.
- Paralysis of the lower part of the body including the legs.
CAVITY - Body cavity in which the abdominal organs are situated.
Gland at base of the brain which secretes hormones into the
blood stream. Those hormones then regulate other glands including
the thyroid, adrenals and gonads. The "Master Gland".
- Inflammation of two or more nerves simultaneously.
- Abnormal cavity within brain tissue, usually resulting from
outpouching of a lateral ventricle.
- State following a seizure, often characterized by altered
function of the limbs and/or mentation.
- Sensation concerning movements of joints and position of
the body in space.
CEREBRI - Raised intracranial pressure, usually causing only
headache and papilledema. No clear underlying structural abnormality.
- The black part of the eye through which light enters; enlarges
in dim light and decreases in size in bright light.
- Defect in vision or blindness in one fourth of the visual
- Paralysis of all four limbs.
- Abnormal congenital opening of the vertebral column.
ONCOLOGIST - A medical doctor who has received advanced training
in the treatment of persons receiving x-ray treatment for
PHYSICIST - A person having a PhD degree who is trained
the science dealing with the properties, changes and interactions
of continuous energy.
- A medical doctor who has received specialized training in
interpreting x-rays, CTs, MRIs and performing angiography.
- Treatment of a lesion with radiation.
ANEURYSM - a balloon-like outpouching of a vessel (the more
common type of aneurysm).
- An area of decreased vision surrounded by an area of less
depressed or normal vision.
- A tube or device implanted in the body (usually made of
Silastic) to redivert excess CSF away from the brain to another
place in the body.
BIFIDA - A congenital defect of the spine marked by the absence
of a portion of the spine.
FUSION - Operative method of strengthening and limiting motion
of the spinal column. Can be performed with a variety of metal
instruments and bone grafts, or bone grafts alone.
- Forward displacement of one vertebra on another.
- Degenerative bone changes in the spine usually most marked
at the vertebral joints.
- Originated from the Greek words stereo meaning three dimensional
and tactos meaning touched.
RADIOSURGERY - The precise delivery of radiation to a preselected
stereotactically localized target.
- Deviation of eye movement which prevents the two eyes from
moving in a parallel fashion.
HEMORRHAGE - Blood in, or bleeding into, the space under the
arachnoid membrane, most commonly from trauma or from rupture
of an aneurysm.
HEMATOMA - a collection of blood (clot) trapped under the
dura matter, the outermost membrane surrounding the brain
and spinal cord.
- A fluid filled cavity in the spinal cord.
- tumor or growth made up of several different types of tissue
(fat, bone, muscle, skin).
- A blood clot attached to the wall of an artery.
- brain cells which lie in the upper part of the brainstem.
DOULOUREUX - (See trigeminal neuralgia)
APPROACH - Operative method of reaching the pituitary gland
or skull base traversing the nose and sinuses.
NEURALGIA - Paroxysmal pain in the face. Pain may be so severe
that it causes an involuntary grimace or "tic".
- The use of high-frequency sound to create images of internal
- Device placed in a shunt system to regulate the rate and
direction of CSF flow.
- A decrease in the diameter of blood vessels.
- An increase in the diameter of blood vessels.
- A hormone secreted by the hypothalamus and stored in the
posterior pituitary which raises blood pressure and increases
reabsorption of water by the kidneys.
- An agent which constricts the arteries and raises blood
- Spasm of blood vessels, decreasing their diameter.
- The cavities or chambers within the brain which contain
the cerebrospinal fluid. There are two lateral ventricles
and midline third and fourth ventricles.
- Inflammation and/or infection of the ventricles.
- An X-ray study of the ventricles.
- An opening into the ventricles of the brain, such as by
inserting a small, thin, hollow catheter.
DRAINAGE - Insertion of a small tube into the ventricles to
drain cerebrospinal fluid, usually when pressure is increased.
- Middle part of the cerebellum between the two hemispheres.
Any of the thirty-three bones of the spinal column.
- An abnormal sensation of rotation or movement of one's self,
or the environment.
- Application of electromagnetic radiation to produce a film
or picture of a bone or soft-tissue area of the body.
Last Updated August 1, 2009