Glossary E's

Escherichia coli enteritis

Definition:a form of gastroenteritis caused by contamination by E. coli with symptoms including diarrhea, vomiting and abdominal pain

Escherichia coli (E. coli)

Definition:bacillus abundant in the large intestines of mammals; commonly stated as E. coli

Epstein-Barr virus

Definition:virus that causes mononucleosis


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


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


Definition:image of the heart created by high-frequency sound waves in ultrasound scanning


Definition:serious condition that occurs in late pregnancy, characterized by seizures in the woman


Definition:occurring at an abnormal position or time


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


Definition:abnormal buildup of fluid in the body, which may cause visible swelling

electroencephalogram (EEG)

Definition:recording of the electrical activity of the brain obtained by use of an electroencephalograph connected to pads placed on the head; results are printed on paper and/or displayed on a bedside monitor

esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD)

Definition:procedure to visually examine the swallowing tube, stomach, and small intestines with a gastroscope, a special type of endoscope

electrocardiograph machine

Definition:device which records the heart's electrical activity and prints it on paper or displays it on a monitor

electrocardiograph (EKG)(ECG)

Definition:recording of the heart's electrical activity, printed on paper or displayed on a monitor; also called an electrocardiogram

electric shock

Definition:strong electrical burst, delivered to a heart that has either stopped beating or is beating in an erratic rhythm (i.e., fibrillating), used in defibrillation procedure


Definition:descriptive of a treatment or procedure that is not urgent and can be arranged at the patient's convenience

electrocardiography (ECG or EKG)

Definition:recording of the electrical activity of the heart obtained by use of an electrocardiograph machine connected to ECG pads placed on the chest; results are printed on paper and/or displayed on a bedside monitor


Definition:device that records the brain's electrical activity


Definition:blockage of a blood vessel by an embolus


Definition:abnormal substance circulating in the bloodstream (such as a blood clot, gas bubble, tissue, bacteria, bone marrow, cholesterol, fat, etc.)


Definition:chronic disease in which the small air sacs in the lungs (alveoli) become damaged; characterized by difficulty breathing


Definition:infected fluid collection around the lung


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


Definition:surgery performed to remove the lining of an artery that has been narrowed by fatty tissue buildup


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


Definition:inner lining of the heart

endocrine gland

Definition:gland that secretes hormones into the bloodstream


Definition:membrane that lines the uterus


Definition:group of chemicals produced in the brain; reduce pain and positively affect mood


Definition:slender, flexible lighted instrument used to view the inside of a body cavity


Definition:procedure to visually examine structures inside the body with an instrument called an endoscope


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


Definition:inflammation of the small intestine, usually causing diarrhea


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

epidural anesthesia

Definition: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


Definition: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; used a medication named adrenaline


Definition:descriptive of a rare disease that suddenly affects more people than usually expected


Definition:outer layer of the skin


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


Definition:pertaining to being located within the spinal canal


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


Definition:happening in the course of ongoing events; as in episodic attack, a separate, but related event


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


Definition:redness of the skin


Definition:red blood cell

esophageal spasm

Definition:irregular contractions of the muscles in the esophagus, which lead to difficulty swallowing

esophageal varices

Definition:swollen veins in the lower esophagus and possibly the upper part of the stomach; can cause vomiting of blood and passing of black stool


Definition:tube-shaped canal in the digestive tract, connecting the throat to the stomach


Definition:group of hormones, produced mainly in the ovaries, necessary for female sexual development and reproductive functioning

endotracheal tube

Definition:plastic tube inserted through the mouth or nose and into the windpipe (trachea) to supply oxygen to a person who is not breathing properly

eustachian tube

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


Definition:emptying, as of the bowels


Definition:surgical removal of diseased tissue


Definition:process by which the body rids itself of waste


Definition:to breathe out; noun form is exhalation


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


Definition:medical term for exhaling

extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy

Definition:procedure performed to destroy kidney stones using external shock waves

exercise stress test

Definition: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

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