Advisory Services

Pharmacology & Physiology


The science of drugs and their interactions with the systems of living animals


The study of drugs, their sources, their nature, and their properties

Pharmacologic effects:

Drug actions on a living system


The activity of a drug within the body over a period of time; includes absorption, distribution, metabolism, and elimination.


Pharmacokinetics includes the study of the mechanisms of absorption and distribution of an administered drug, the rate at which a drug action begins and the duration of the effect, the chemical changes of the substance in the body (e.g. by enzymes) and the effects and routes of excretion of the metabolites of the drug.

Pharmacokinetic modeling:

A method of describing the process of absorption, distribution, metabolism, and elimination of a drug within the body

A/B rated:

A system that compares the equivalency of one drug to that of another, especially brand to generic.

Absence seizure:

A type of generalized seizure characterized by a sudden, momentary break in consciousness; also called petit mal seizure.


The process whereby a drug enters the circulatory system.

Acetylcholine (ACh):

A neurotransmitter that binds to ACh receptors on the membranes of muscle cells, beginning a process that ultimately results in muscle contraction.


A blood pH below 7.35, a metabolic condition due to excessive loss of bicarbonate or sodium.


A dependence characterized by a perceived need to take a drug to attain the psychological and physical effects of mood-altering substances.


Addiction is a primary, chronic disease of brain reward, motivation, memory and related circuitry.


Physical and psychological dependence on psychoactive substances (for example alcohol, tobacco, heroin and other drugs) which cross the blood-brain barrier once ingested, temporarily altering the chemical milieu of the brain.

Adverse Drug Reaction:

A negative consequence to a patient from taking a particular drug.


Ay noxious, unwanted, undesired effect of drug that that occurs at a normal man’s dose used for diagnosis, treatment and palliative purpose.


The strength by which a particular chemical messenger binds to its receptor site on a cell.

Acne Vulgaris:

An inflammation of the skin, usually on the face and neck, that is caused by increased activity of the sebaceous glands at puberty.

Actinic Keratosis:

A scaly skin lesion that is caused by too much sun and can lead to skin cancer.

Active Immunity:

Protection against disease that occurs as a result of coming into contact with an infectious agent or an inactivated part of such an agent administered by a vaccine.

Acute Renal Failure:

Rapid reduction in kidney function resulting in accumulation of nitrogen and other wastes.

Acute Viral Infection:

An infection that quickly resolves with no latent infection.

Addison's Disease:

A life-threatening deficiency of glucocorticoids and mineralocorticoids that is treated with the daily administration of corticosteroid.


An uncommon disease, caused by partial or complete failure of the outer layer of the adrenal glands (the adrenal cortex).

Afferent System:

The nerves and sense organs that bring information to the CNS; part of the peripheral nervous system.


Arterial impedance, or the force against which cardiac muscle shortens; along with preload and contractility, determines cardiac output.


Drugs that bind to a particular receptor site and trigger the cell's response in a manner similar to the action of the body's own chemical messenger.


A blood pH above 7.45, a metabolic condition due to excessive loss of potassium or chloride.

Allergic Diseases:

Diseases caused by an allergic reaction.

Allergic Response:

An instance in which the immune system over reacts to an otherwise harmless substance.


A state of heightened sensitivity as a result of exposure to a particular substance.


Allergy is a hypersensitive disorder of the immune system .

Alpha Receptors:

Nerve receptors that control vasoconstriction, pupil dilation, and relaxation of the GI smooth muscles.

Alternative Medicines:

Herbs, supplements, and homeopathic remedies for medicinal purposes.


Alternative medicine includes dietary supplements, megadose vitamins, herbal preparations, special teas, massage therapy, magnet therapy, and spiritual healing.

Alzheimer's Disease:

A degenerative disorder of the brain that leads to progressive dementia and changes in personality and behavior.


Pain relieving agent.

Anaphylactic Reaction:

A severe allergic response resulting in immediate life-threatening respiratory distress, usually followed by vascular collapse and shock and accompanied by hives.


An exaggerated reaction to a foreign substance that results in severe shock with breathing difficulty and circulatory failure.


Hormones produced in males in the testes and in females in the ovaries.


A male sex hormone that promotes the development and maintenance of the male sex characteristics. The major androgen is testosterone.

Angina Pectoris:

Spasmodic or suffocating chest pain caused by an imbalance between oxygen supply and oxygen demand.


The formation of new blood vessels.


Loss of appetite.


Drugs that bind to a receptor site and block the action of the endogenous messenger or other drugs; used to reverse benzodiazepine or narcotic overdoses.


A chemical substance with the ability to kill or inhibit the growth of organisms by interfering with bacteria life processes.


Antibiotics are drugs obtained from natural or synthetic sources that are used to treat infections caused by bacteria and other organisms, including protozoa, parasites, and fungi.


The part of the immune system to neutralize antigens or foreign substances in the body.


A drug that potentiates the action of acetylcholine by inhibiting the enzyme acetylcholinesterase.


A class of drugs that prevent clot formation by affecting clotting factors .


Drugs that inhibit impulses that cause vomiting from going to the stomach.


Drugs taken to prevent or treat nausea and vomiting.


Peptides that are capable under appropriate conditions of inducing a specific immune response.


Common term for drugs that block the H1 receptors.

Antineoplastic drugs:

Cancer-fighting drugs that are considered cytotoxic materials.


A class of drugs that reduce the risk of clot formation by inhibiting platelet aggregation.


Drugs that are used to treat schizophrenia; reduce symptoms of hallucinations, delusions, and thought disorders; also called neuroleptics.


Fever reducing agent.

Antirejection drugs:

Medications that prevent the body from rejecting foreign organs of transplant.


Drugs that limit the progression of HIV.


A substance that inhibits the growth of microorganisms without killing them,used on living surfaces.


Drugs that block or suppress the act of coughing.


A material used in treatment of poisoning caused by animal venom.


Agents that prevent virus replication in a host cell without interfering with the host's normal function.


A state of uneasiness characterized by apprehension and worry about possible events.

Apocrine glands:

Sweat glands found in the axillary, perineal, and genital regions.

Aqueous humor:

The liquid in the front portion of the eye.


Any variation from the normal heart beat.


Variation from the normal rhythm of the heartbeat, encompassing abnormalities of rate, regularity, site of impulse origin, and sequence of activation.


Joint inflammation; persistent pain due to functional problems of the joints.


The accumulation of fluids in the abdominal organs and the lower extremities.


The absence of disease-causing microorganisms.

Aseptic technique:

The manipulation of sterile products and devices in such a way as to avoid introducing pathogens or disease-causing organisms.


Inhalation of fluids from the mouth and throat.


A reversible lung disease with intermittent attacks in which inspiration is obstructed; provoked by airborne allergens.


It is a disease characterized by recurrent attacks of breathlessness and wheezing, which vary in severity and frequency from person to person. In an individual, they may occur from hour to hour and day to day.

This condition is due to inflammation of the air passages in the lungs and affects the sensitivity of the nerve endings in the airways so they become easily irritated. In an attack, the lining of the passages swell causing the airways to narrow and reducing the flow of air in and out of the lungs(WHO).

Atonic seizure

A type of generalized seizure characterized by sudden loss of both muscle tone and consciousness.

Atopic eczema

A chronic pruritic eruption of unknown etiology, although allergic, hereditary, and psychogenic factors may be involved; also called atopic dermatitis.

Attention-deficit disorder (ADD)

A neurological disorder characterized by impulsivity and distractibility but with less hyperactivity than ADHD.

Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)

A neurological disorder characterized by hyperactivity, impulsivity, and distractibility .


A subjective sensation or motor phenomenon that precedes and marks the onset of a migraine headache.

Autonomic nervous system (ANS)

The part of the efferent system of the PNS that regulates activities of body structures not under voluntary control.

B cells

Antibody-producing lymphocytes that are involved in humoral immunity.


Small, single-celled microorganisms that exist in three main forms: spherical (i.e. cocci), rod shaped (i.e. bacilli), and spiral (i.e. spirilla).

Bactericidal agent

An agent that kills the invading organism.

Bacteriostatic agent

An agent that inhibits the growth or multiplication of bacteria.

Basal nuclei

Symmetric, subcortical masses of gray matter embedded in the lower portions of the cerebral hemisphere; part of the extrapyramidal system; also called basal ganglia.

Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH):

Abnormal enlargement of the prostate gland, usually associated with aging.

Beta blocker

A Class II antiarrhythmic drug that competitively blocks response to beta stimulation, which results in decreases in heart rate, myocardial contractility, blood pressure, and myocardial oxygen demand; used to treat arrhythmias, MIs, and angina,hypertension.

Beta-1 receptors:

Nerve receptors on the heart that control the rate and strength of the heartbeat.

Beta-2 receptors

Nerve receptors that control the smooth muscle of the airways.

Beyond-use dating

The date after which a compounded sterile product should not be used.


The degree to which a drug or other substance becomes available to the target tissue after administration.

Biologic-response modifiers

Agents that alter the expression and response to surface antigens and enhance immune cell activities in ways that promote destruction of human malignancies.

Bipolar disorder

A condition in which a patient presents with mood swings that alternate between periods of major depression and periods of mild-to-severe chronic agitation.


The act of combining two substances.

Blood pressure (BP)

The product of cardiac output (CO) and total peripheral resistance (TPR).


The blood pressure is the pressure of the blood within the arteries. It is produced primarily by the contraction of the heart muscle.

Blood-brain barrier

A barrier that prevents many substances from entering the cerebrospinal fluid from the blood; formed by glial cells that envelope the capillaries in the central nervous system, presenting a barrier to many water-soluble compounds though they are permeable to lipid-soluble substances.

Body mass index (BMI)

A guide to use in determining whether to initiate pharmacologic treatment for obesity; calculated by dividing the patient's weight (in kilograms) by the patient's height (in meters) squared (kg/m2) or gram/cm2 or pounds(lb)/inch2.

Body surface area (BSA)

A measurement related to a patient's weight and height, expressed in meters squared (m2), and used to calculate patient-specific doses of medications.


BSA (m²) = ( [Height(cm) x Weight(kg) ]/ 3600 )½ e.g. BSA = SQRT( (cm*kg)/3600 )

or in inches and pounds: BSA (m²) = ( [Height(in) x Weight(lbs) ]/ 3131 )½


An endogenous chemical that causes contraction of intestinal, uterine, and bronchial smooth muscle.

Broad-spectrum antibiotic

An antibiotic that covers multiple organisms.


A condition in which the inner lining of the bronchial airways becomes inflamed, causing the expiration of air from the lungs to be obstructed .


An agent that relaxes smooth-muscle cells of the bronchioles, thereby increasing airway diameter and improving the movement of gases into and out of the lungs.


Spasmodic contraction of the smooth muscles of the bronchiole.

Buccal administration

Oral administration in which a drug is placed between the gums and the inner lining of the cheek.

Calcium channel blocker

A Class IV antiarrhythmic drug that prevents the movement of calcium ions through slow channels; used for most supraventricular tachyarrhythmias, in angina and in hypertension.


A fungal infection caused by Candida albicans most commonly involving the oral and vaginal mucosa.

Carbonic anhydrase inhibitors

Diuretics that act in the proximal tubule to increase urine volume and change the pH of urine to alkaline.


Coalescent masses of infected hair follicles that are deeper than furuncles.


Enlargement of the heart due to overwork from over stimulation.


Short periods of muscle weakness and loss of muscle tone associated with sudden emotions such as joy, fear, or anger; a symptom of narcolepsy.

Catechol-o-methyl transferase (COMT)

An enzyme that metabolizes levodopa in the body; inhibited by certain anti-Parkinson's agents.

Cellular (cell-mediated) immunity

A specific response to antigens that is mediated primarily by lymphocytes and macrophages.

Celsius temperature scale

The temperature scale that uses zero degrees (i.e. 0 degree C) as the temperature at which water freezes and 100 degree C as the temperature at which water boils.

Central nervous system (CNS)

The brain and spinal cord.

Central venous catheter

A catheter placed deep into the body.


A class of broad spectrum antibiotics with a mechanism of action similar to that of penicillins, but with a different antibacterial spectrum, resistant to beta-lactamase, and pharmacokinetics; divided into first-, second-, third-, and fourth-generation agents.


Combination with a metal in complexes in which the metal is part of a ring.

Chemical name

A name that describes a drug's chemical makeup.

Chemoreceptor trigger zone (CTZ)

An area below the floor of the fourth ventricle of the brain that can trigger nausea and vomiting when certain signals are received .


An odourless, white, wax like, powdery substance that is present in all foods of animal origin but not in foods of plant origin; circulates continuously in the blood for use by all body cells; a eukaryotic sterol that in higher animals is the precursor of bile acids and steroid hormones.

Chronic viral infection

An infection that has a protracted course with long periods of remission interspersed with recurrence .


Very large lipoproteins containing 90% triglycerides and 5% cholesterol.

Circardian rhythm

Regular recurrence in cycles of twenty-four hours.


The syndrome of endocrine, somatic, and psychic changes occurring at the end of the reproductive period in females.

Clotting cascade

A series of events that initiate blood clotting or coagulation.

Colony-stimulating factor (CSF)

A chemical that stimulates the bone marrow to produce blood cells.

Community-acquired infection

An infection contracted in the community, not in the hospital.

Complementary DNA (cDNA)

A single strand of DNA formed in an early step of the recombinant DNA process; serves as a template for the second strand.

Congestive heart failure (CHF)

A condition in which the heart can no longer pump adequate blood to the body's tissues; results in engorgement of the pulmonary vessels.


Inability of the heart to keep up with the demands on it and, specifically, failure of the heart to pump blood with normal efficiency.


Pink eye.


Conjunctivitis is inflammation of the conjunctiva or thin membrane covering the white of the eye and the inner surface of the eyelid. The inflamed conjunctiva will usually make the eye appear red or pink because the tiny blood vessels that are normally within the conjunctiva are now irritated and enlarged.

Contact dermatitis

An inflammatory reaction produced by contact with an irritating agent.


The cardiac muscle's capacity for becoming shorter in response to a stimulus; along with preload and afterload, determines cardiac output.


Involuntary contractions or series of contractions of the voluntary muscles.


A class of drugs that stimulate adenylate cylase and act as anti-inflammatory agents to suppress the immune response; any of the steroids elaborated by the adrenal cortex except the sex hormones; also their synthetic equivalents.


A major metabolite of nicotine.

Cough reflex

A coordinated series of events, initiated by stimulation of receptors in the lungs and airways, that results in a cough.

Crohn's disease

An inflammatory bowel disease affecting the entire GI tract from mouth to anus.

Cushing's disease

A disease caused by overproduction of steroids or by excessive administration of corticosteroids over an extended period.

Cyclic lipopeptides

A new class of drugs that binds to bacterial membranes and cause the cell membrane to depolarize, thus leading to an inhibition of DNA and RNA synthesis.

Cyclooxygenase-1 (COX-1)

An enzyme that is present in most body tissues and produces protective prostaglandins to regulate physiological processes such as GI mucosal integrity.

Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2)

An enzyme that is present in the synovial fluid of arthritis patients and is associated with the pain and inflammation of arthritis.

Cystic fibrosis (CF)

A hereditary disorder of infants, children, and young adults that involves widespread dysfunction of the gastrointestinal and pulmonary systems GI effects involve increased viscosity of mucous secretions and relative deficiencies of pancreatic enzymes.

Cytoprotective agents

Agents administered to reduce the side effects and toxicity of chemotherapeutic agents.

Cytotoxic materials

Hazardous chemicals or drugs that must be handled and prepared with extra precautions.


An agent that is toxic to cells.


An agent that causes the mucous membranes to shrink, thereby allowing the sinus cavities to drain.

Delirium tremors (DTs)

Coarse, irregular tremors with vivid hallucinations caused by cessation of alcohol consumption.


A state in which a person's body has adapted physiologically and psychologically to a drug and cannot function without it

Destructive agent

A drug that kills bacteria, fungi, viruses, or even normal or cancer cells.

Diagnostic agent

A drug used to diagnose other diseases.

Diastolic blood pressure

The blood pressure measurement that measures the pressure during the dilation of the heart.

Diffuse tumors

Cancer tumors that are widely distributed and are not localized.


The perception of two images of a single object.

Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs):

Agents that can potentially modify the progression of rheumatoid arthritis.


An agent that frees inanimate objects from infection.


Agent that destroys disease-causing microorganisms and their spores usually applied on non- living surfaces.


A substance that rids the body of excess fluid and electrolytes by increasing the urine output mostly used for the treatment of hypertension.

Diverticular disease

An outpocketing from the colon wall that becomes inflamed.


Inflammation of the diverticula (small outpouchings) along the wall of the colon, the large intestine. (One outpouching is a diverticulum; two or more are diverticula).

DNA sequence

A sequence of three nucleotide bases that exists for each amino acid.


The quantity of a drug administered at one time.


The regimen governing the size, amount, frequency, and number of doses of a therapeutic agent to be administered to a patient.

Dosage form:

How a medication is manufactured (e.g., capsule, tablet).


A dosage form (DF) is the physical form of a dose of a chemical compound used as a drug or medication intended for administration or consumption.

Dosing schedule:

The indication of how often the drug is to be taken according to the prescription.

Dosing table:

A table providing dose recommendations based on the age and/or the weight of the patient; often used for determining the safe dose for a pediatric patient.

Double blinding:

Clinical trials in which neither the trial participants nor the study staff know whether a particular participant is in the control group or the experimental group.

Drop set:

The number of drops an IV set takes to make 1 mL; also called drip set.


A medicinal substance or remedy used to change the way a living organism functions; also called a medication.

Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA):

The branch of the U.S. Justice Department that is responsible for regulating the sale and use of specified drugs.

Drug sponsor:

The entity responsible for testing a drug's efficacy and safety, usually a pharmaceutical company.


A drug sponsor is the entity responsible for collecting all the information about a new animal drug and submitting this information to CVM (centre for veterinary medicine) for review. Together, CVM and the sponsor guide the drug through the approval process.

Drug tolerance:

A situation that occurs when the body requires higher doses of a drug to produce the same therapeutic effect.

Duodenal ulcer:

A peptic lesion situated in the duodenum.

Duration of action:

The length of time a drug gives the desired response or is at the therapeutic level.


Imperfect articulation of speech.


Impairment of the power of voluntary movement.


Difficulty in swallowing.

Eccrine glands:

Simple tube-shaped sweat glands that are numerous on the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet; regulate body temperature.

Ectopic pacemaker:

A pacemaker other than the SA node.


A hot, itchy, red, oozing skin inflammation; also called dermatitis.

Efferent system:

The nerves that dispatch information out from the CNS; part of the peripheral nervous system.

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT):

The introduction of a brief but convulsive electrical stimulation through the brain; used as therapy for major depressive disorders .


An irreversible lung disease characterized by destruction of the alveoli in the lungs, which allows air to accumulate in tissues and organs.

Empirical treatment:

Treatment begun before a definite diagnosis.

Endocrine system:

Glands and other structures that elaborate internal secretions, called hormones that are released directly into the circulatory system.

Endogenous anxiety:

Anxiety caused by factors within the organism.

Endogenous chemicals:

Chemicals produced by the body.

Endotracheal intubation:

Insertion of a tube into the trachea to keep it open.


By way of, or pertaining to, the intestine.

Enteral nutrition:

Feeding a patient liquid food through a tube that leads to the gastrointestinal system.


A neurologic disorder of sudden and recurring seizures.


A form of lipid found in the cell membrane of fungi.


A skin infection characterized by redness and warmth, local pain, edematous plaque with sharply established borders, chills, malaise, and fever; a form of cellulitis.


Hormones that stimulate the growth of reproductive tissue in females.

Ethical dilemma:

A situation that calls for a judgment between two or more solutions, not all of which are necessarily wrong.

Evidence-based medicine:

Drug use or practice that is supported by clinical trials.

Exogenous anxiety:

Anxiety caused by factors outside the organism.


An agent that decreases the thickness and stickyness of mucus, enabling the patient to rid the lungs and airway of mucus when coughing.

Fat-soluble vitamins:

Vitamins that are absorbed along with dietary fat and are maintained in large stores by the body; vitamins A, D, E, and K.

Fibrinolytic agent:

A drug that will dissolve a blood clot once it is formed.


A class of agents that dissolve clots.

First-pass effect:

The extent to which a drug is metabolized by the liver before reaching systemic circulation.


A common viral infection; influenza.


The flu (also referred to as influenza) is a viral infection that affects the respiratory system.


Any of several diseases caused by bacteria or viruses and marked especially by respiratory or intestinal symptoms.


An inflammation of a hair follicle by a minute, red, pustulated nodule without involvement of the surrounding tissue.


An instrument used to pick up small objects.


Single-cell organisms similar to human cells; marked by the absence of chlorophyll, a rigid cell wall, and reproduction by spores; parasites that feed on living organisms (or on dead organic material).


A boil; caused by a staphylococcal infection of a sebaceous gland and the associated hair follicle

Fusion inhibitor:

A drug that prevents HIV from entering the immune cells .

Gastric stasis:

Lack of stomach motility.

Gastric ulcer:

A local excavation in the gastric mucosa.


A hole in the lining of the stomach corroded by the acidic digestive juices which are secreted by the stomach cells.


Irritation and superficial erosion of the stomach lining.

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD):

A GI disease characterized by radiating burning or pain in the chest and an acid taste, caused by backflow of acidic stomach contents across an incompetent lower esophageal sphincter; also referred to as heartburn.

Gastrointestinal (GI) tract:

A continuous tube that begins in the mouth and extends through the pharynx, esophagus, stomach, small intestine, and large intestine to end at the anus .

General anesthesia:

A condition characterized by reversible unconsciousness, analgesia, skeletal muscle relaxation, and amnesia on recovery.

Generalized seizure:

A seizure that involves both hemispheres of the brain simultaneously and has no local origin; can be a tonic-clonic (grand mal), absence (petit mal), myoclonic, or atonic seizure.

Generalized viral infection:

An infection that spreads to other tissues by way of the bloodstream or the central nervous system.


A chronic eye disorder characterized by abnormally high internal eye pressure that destroys the optic nerve and causes partial or complete loss of vision.


Corticosteroid involved in metabolism and immune system regulation.


The process of forming new glucose, in which protein and fatty acids are converted into immediate energy sources.

Glycoprotein antagonists:

A class of antiplatelet agents that bind to receptors on platelets preventing platelet aggregation as well as the binding of fibrinogen and other adhesive molecules.

Gram's staining:

A testing technique in which bacteria are stained to determine if they are gram-positive (purple) or gram-negative (red or pink).

Grand mal seizure:

A type of generalized seizure characterized by body rigidity followed by muscle jerks; also called tonic-clonic seizure.

Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF):

An agent that stimulates the bone marrow to produce specific white cells, such as the granulocytes.

Growth hormone (GH):

A fundamental hormone that affects metabolism, skeletal growth, and somatic growth; its deficiency causes growth retardation(dwarfism).

Growth hormone releasing factor (GHRF):

A neuropeptide secreted by the hypothalamus that stimulates the secretion of growth hormone by the pituitary.


Excessive development of the mammary glands in males (abnormal condition), with or without tenderness.

Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori):

A bacterium that contributes to the development of many gastric ulcers(about 90%).


The proportion of red blood cells to the total volume of blood.

Hematologic agent:

A replacement plasma protein that is necessary for blood coagulation and is not produced in a hemophilic patient.


Engorgements of the vascular cushions situated within the sphincter muscles; result from pressure exerted on anal veins while straining to pass a stool also called piles.


A disease of the liver that causes inflammation, can be acute or chronic, and has several forms .

From A to G.

Hepatitis A:

A viral form of hepatitis that is usually mild and transient and can be spread from one person to another.

Hepatitis B:

The most dangerous form of hepatitis, accompanied by jaundice and easily spread from one person to another.

Hepatitis C:

An infection of the liver that cannot be spread from one person to another, most commonly transmitted by blood transfusions or illicit drug use.

Hiatal hernia:

A protrusion through the esophageal hiatus of the diaphragm.

High-density lipoproteins (HDLs):

Lipoproteins containing 5% triglyceride, 25% cholesterol, and 50% protein; "good cholesterol".


Abnormal hairiness, especially in women.


An endogenous chemical that evokes the symptoms of an allergic reaction and is blocked by antihistamines.

Histamine2 (H2) receptor antagonists:

Agents that block acid and pepsin secretion in response to histamine, gastrin, foods, distention, caffeine, or cholinergic stimulation; used to treat GERD and H. pylori.


A respiratory tract infection caused by a fungus, most often found in accumulated droppings from birds and bats; often called the summer flu.

Homeopathic medications:

Very small dilutions of natural drugs claimed to stimulate the immune system.


A system of therapeutics in which diseases are treated by administering minute doses of drugs that are capable of producing in healthy patients symptoms like those of the disease being treated.


Excessive cholesterol in the blood.


Elevation of the levels of one or more of the lipoproteins in the blood.


Elevated blood pressure, where systolic blood pressure is greater than 140 mm Hg and diastolic pressure is greater than 90 mm Hg.


A condition caused by excessive thyroid hormone and marked by increased metabolic rate; also called thyrotoxicosis.

Hypertonic solution:

A parenteral solution with a greater number of particles than blood cells.


A solution with a higher salt concentration than in normal cells of the body and the blood


Drugs that induce sleep.


Blood glucose less than 70 mg/dL.


A deficiency of hormone production and secretion .


Hypogonadism is when the sex glands produce little or no hormones.


Low blood pressure than normal expected for an individual in a given environment.


A deficiency of thyroid activity that results in a decreased metabolic rate, tiredness, and lethargy in adults and causes cretinism in children.

Hypotonic solution:

A solution with a lower concentration of particles than body fluids contain.


A solution with a lower salt concentration than in normal cells of the body and the blood.

Idiosyncratic reaction:

An unusual or unexpected response to a drug that is unrelated to the dose given.

Immune response:

The immune system's way of providing resistance to disease and malignancy through the production of antibodies.


The process by which the immune system is stimulated to acquire protection against a specific disease; usually achieved by use of a vaccine.


An antibody that may prevent an organism from attaching to a cell receptor and may destroy the organism.

Immunoglobulins (Igs):

Proteins with antibody activity.


A superficial, highly contagious skin infection; characterized by small red spots that evolve into vesicles, break, become encrusted, and are surrounded by a zone of erythema.


Medications placed under the skin to deliver the active ingredient slowly.


Failure of the male to initiate or to maintain an erection until ejaculation.

Improper fraction:

A fraction with a value greater than 1 (the numerator's value is larger than the denominator's value).


The diseases, symptoms, and conditions for which a drug is known to be of benefit.


The process whereby a drug increases the concentration of certain enzymes that affect the pharmacologic response to another drug.

Infection control committee (ICC):

A committee of the hospital that provides leadership in relation to infection control techniques.


The administration of a large volume of liquid medication given parenterally over a long period.


Administration of a medication through the respiratory system.


Gases, vapours, solutions, or suspensions intended to be inhaled via the nasal or oral respiratory routes.


The process whereby a drug blocks enzyme activity and impairs the metabolism of another drug.


A method of administering medications in which a syringe with a shaft or catheter is used to penetrate through the skin or membrane into the tissue below.

Input devices:

Devices used for getting information into the computer such as a keyboard, mouse, or touch screen.


The part of the prescription that lists the medication or medications prescribed, including the drug names, strengths, and amounts.


Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep or not feeling refreshed on awakening.


Administration of a medication drop by drop.


The situation in which one drug alters the action of another drug; foods, alcohol, and nicotine can also interact with drugs and alter their actions.


A substance that exerts virus-nonspecific but host-specific antiviral activity by inducing gene coding for antiviral proteins that inhibit the synthesis of viral RNA.


Administration of a medication through the skin.


Administration of a medication by injecting it into a muscle; abbreviated IM.

Intramuscular injection:

An injection given into the aqueous muscle tissue.

Intrarespiratory route:

The administration of a drug by inhalation into the lungs.

Intrauterine delivery system:

A way to deliver medication to prevent conception or treat cancer.


Administration of a medication through a vein, thereby avoiding the first-pass effect; abbreviated IV.Intravenous (IV) infusion:

Medication or fluid administered directly into a vein; the process of injecting that fluid into the veins.

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS):

A functional disorder in which the lower GI tract does not have appropriate tone or spasticity to regulate bowel activity.

Irritant receptors:

Receptors in the lungs and airways that respond to coarse particles and chemicals, causing a cough.

Ischemic stroke:

A cerebral infarction, in which a region of the brain is deprived of oxygen.


A class of antibiotics that block protein synthesis by binding to ribosomal subunits and may also inhibit the formation of newly forming ribosomes; used primarily to treat bacterial infections in the lungs and sinuses.


A form of protein-deficiency malnutrition .


Severe protein malnutrition, especially in children after weaning, marked by lethargy, growth retardation, anemia, edema, skin depigmentation, and hair loss or change in hair color.


The ability of a virus to lie dormant and then, under certain conditions, reproduce and again behave like an infective agent, causing cell damage.

Legend drug:

A drug sold only by prescription and labeled "Caution: Federal law prohibits dispensing without prescription" or "Rx only".

Leukotriene inhibitor:

An agent that blocks the body's inflammatory responses to the leukotrienes or blocks their synthesis.


Spherical particles containing a core of triglycerides and cholesterol, in varying proportions, surrounded by a surface coat of phospholipids so that they can remain in solution.

Local anesthesia:

The production of transient and reversible loss of sensation in a defined area of the body.

Local effect:

An action of a drug that is confined to a specific part of the body.

Local infection:

An infection restricted to or pertaining to one area of the body.

Local use:

Site-specific application of a drug.

Local viral infection:

An infection affecting tissues of a single system such as the respiratory tract, eye, or skin.

Long-term care facility:

An institution that provides care for geriatric and disabled patients; includes extended-care facility (ECF) and skilled-care facility (SCF).

Loop diuretics:

Diuretics that inhibit reabsorption of sodium and chloride in the loop of Henle, thereby causing increased urinary output.

Lymphatic system:

A network of vessels that carry lymph, the lymph nodes, and the lymphoid organs including the tonsils, spleen, and thymus; a system for filtering body fluids by nodes, vessels, and lymphocytes before the fluid returns to general circulation .


A class of Bacteriostatic antibiotics that inhibit protein synthesis by combining with ribosomes; used primarily to treat pulmonary infections caused by Legionella and gram-positive organisms.


Cells that rid the body of antigens, toxins, and cellular debris by ingesting the foreign substance and digesting it.

Malabsorption syndrome:

Impaired intestinal absorption of nutrients.


An infectious febrile disease transmitted by the female anopheles mosquito (causative agent is plasmodium).

Malignant hyperthermia:

A rare, but serious, side effect of anesthesia associated with an increase in intracellular calcium and a rapid rise in body temperature.


Any disorder of nutrition .


Malnutrition is the condition that develops when the body does not get the right amount of the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients it needs to maintain healthy tissues and organ function.


A mood of extreme excitement, excessive elation, hyperactivity, agitation, and increased psychomotor activity.

Mast cell stabilizer:

An agent that stabilizes mast cell membranes against rupture caused by antigenic substances and thereby reduces the amount of histamine and other inflammatory substances released in airway tissues.


Substances that initiate biological responses.

Membrane stabilizing agent:

A Class I antiarrhythmic drug that slows the movement of ions into cardiac cells, thus reducing the action potential and dampening abnormal rhythms and heartbeats.


The process by which drugs are chemically converted to compounds and then excreted through metabolic pathways.

Migraine headache:

A severe, throbbing, vascular headache, usually resulting in nausea, photophobia, phonophobia, and hyperesthesia.

Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs):

A class of antidepressant drugs that inhibit the activity of the enzymes that break down monoamines or catecholamines and serotonin .

Monoclonal antibody (MAb):

An antibody produced in a laboratory from an isolated specific lymphocyte that produces a pure antibody against a known specific antigen; used in cancer immunotherapy.

Morbid obesity:

A state in which an individual's weight is two or more times the ideal body weight (IBW).


Agents that destroy or dissolve mucus.

Multiple sclerosis (MS):

An autoimmune disease in which the myelin sheaths around nerves degenerate .

Multiple-lumen catheter:

A catheter used to separately administer potentially physically incompatible drugs.

Muscle fasciculation:

A small, local, involuntary muscular contraction visible under the skin.

Muscle relaxants:

Agents used specifically to reduce muscle tension.

Myasthenia gravis:

An autoimmune disorder of the neuromuscular junction in which the ACh receptors are destroyed at the motor end plate.

Myocardial hypertrophy:

Thickening of the heart muscle in response to over stimulation.

Myocardial infarction (MI):

A heart attack; occurs when a region of the heart muscle is deprived of oxygen.

Myoclonic seizure:

A type of generalized seizure characterized by sudden muscle contractions with no loss of consciousness.

Naked virus:

A virus without an envelope covering the capsid.


A sleep disorder in which inappropriate attacks of sleep occur during the daytime hours.


A pain-modulating chemical derived from opium or synthetically produced.


Devices used to deliver medication in a fine-mist form to the lung; uses air flowing past liquid to create the mist; often used in treating asthma.

Neoplastic disease:

A disorder that occurs when normal cellular control mechanisms become altered; characterized by uncontrolled cellular growth and the development of abnormal cells; also referred to as cancer.


Glomerulotubular units that are the working units of the kidney or basic functional unit of kidneys.


Destruction of the kidneys or reduction in the functioning of kidneys.


The addictive component of tobacco.


Failure to adhere to an appropriate drug regimen.

Nonnarcotic analgesics:

Drugs used for pain, inflammation, and fever that are not controlled substances e.g.paracetamol.

Non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI):

A drug that inhibits HIV reverse transcriptase at a different site than an NRTI targets.


Not related to disease.

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs):

Anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antipyretic drugs that are not scheduled; used to treat arthritis and for other indications such as pain and inflammation, fever.

Nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NRTI):

A drug that inhibits HIV reverse transcriptase, to prevent the formation of RNA from proviral DNA causing a decrease in the amount of virus in the body and subsequent spread to other healthy cells.

Nucleotide reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NtRTI):

A drug that inhibits HIV reverse transcriptase by competing with natural nucleic acid substrates,


A state in which an individual's total body weight includes greater quantities of fat than is considered normal (25% of total body weight for men and 35% for women).

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD):

Recurrent, persistent urges to perform repetitive acts such as hand washing.


Administration of a medication through the eye.


Any narcotic that has opiate-like activity, i.e.insensibility or stupor.


Labeling antigenic material so that it is more readily identified and destroyed by macrophage.

Oral administration:

Medication administration (through swallowing) for absorption along the GI tract into systemic circulation; can also refer to topical administration such as for local treatment on the lips or mouth.

Oral complications:

Tissue injury of the oral cavity associated with chemotherapy and radiation.

Oral contraceptives (OCs):

Hormonal compounds taken orally to prevent the occurrence of pregnancy.

Oral syringe:

A device without a needle to administer medication to pediatric or elderly patients unable to swallow tablets or capsules.

Osmotic diuretic:

A diuretic that increases the osmotic pressure of glomerular filtrate, thereby inhibiting tubular reabsorption of water and electrolytes and increasing urinary output.

Osmotic laxatives:

Stool softeners that draw water into the colon and thereby stimulate evacuation .


A degenerative joint disease resulting in loss of cartilage, elasticity, and thickness.


Cells that form bone.


Cells that resorb bone.


Demineralization and weakening of the skeleton, caused by a deficiency of vitamin D in adults.


Reduction or weakening of bone mass due to loss of calcium from bones usually occur in oldage.

Over-the-counter (OTC) drug:

A drug sold without a prescription .


The activation of electrical activity in afferent neurons with sensory endings in peripheral tissue with a higher firing threshold than those of temperature or touch; a protective signal to warn of damage or presence of disease; the fifth vital sign; classified as acute, chronic nonmalignant, and chronic malignant .


An unpleasant sensation occurring in varying degrees of severity as a consequence of injury, disease, or emotional disorder.


Intense, overwhelming, and uncontrollable anxiety.


Plants or animals that have the ability to live within another organism and survive at its expense; the parasite lives within the intermediate host during the larval stage and the definitive host at maturity.


An organism that lives on or in an organism of another species, known as the host, from the body of which it obtains nutriment.


The administration of medication by injection and not by way of the alimentary canal or gastrointestinal system.

Parenteral solutions:

Products that are prepared in a sterile environment for administration by injection.

Parkinson's disease:

A neurologic disorder characterized by akinesia, resting tremor, and muscular rigidity.

Partial seizure:

An abnormal electrical discharge centered in a specific area of the brain; usually caused by a trauma.

Partial thromboplastin time (PTT):

A test that measures the function of the intrinsic and common pathways; affected by heparin.

Passive immunity:

Protection against a disease as the result of receiving antibodies that were formed by another person or animal who developed them in response to being infected with the disease.


A government grant that gives a drug company the sole right to manufacture a drug for a certain number of years; protects the company's investment in the drug's development ususally for 20 yrs.


The study of disease and illnesses affecting the normal function of the body.

Patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) infusion device:

Device used by a patient to deliver small doses of medication to the patient for chronic pain.

Patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) pump:

A means of pain control whereby the patient can regulate, within certain limits, the administration of pain medication.


A class of antibiotics obtained from Penicillium chrysogenum; kill bacteria by preventing them from forming a rigid cell wall, thereby allowing an excessive amount of water to enter through osmosis and cause lysis of the bacterium cell.


Any of a large group of natural or semisynthetic antibacterial antibiotics derived directly or indirectly from strains of fungi of the genus Penicillium and other soil-inhabiting fungi, which exert a bactericidal as well as a bacteriostatic effect on susceptible bacteria by interfering with the final stages of the synthesis of peptidoglycan, a substance in the bacterial cell wall.

Peptic disease:

Disorders of the upper GI tract caused by the action of acid and pepsin; includes mucosal injury, erythema erosions, and frank ulceration.

Peptic ulcer:

An ulcer formed at any part of the GI tract exposed to acid and the enzyme pepsin.

Pharmacodynamic agent:

A drug that alters body functions in a desired way.


A Greek word meaning a magic spell, remedy, or poison that was used in early records to represent the concept of a drug.


Drugs that control vomiting by inhibiting the CTZ (chemoreceptor trigger zone).


An excessive response to solar radiation in the presence of a sensitizing agent.


An inactive substance with no treatment value.


Small circular rings of DNA that are found in bacteria.


A common lung infection, caused by microorganisms that gain access to the lower respiratory tract.

Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP):

The administration of antiretrovirals after exposure to HIV.

Potassium-sparing diuretics:

Diuretics that result in an exchange of the sodium excreted in urine for the potassium returned to the blood.


The mechanical state of the heart at the end of diastole; along with afterload and contractility, determines cardiac output.


A compound that on administration and chemical conversion by metabolic processes becomes an active pharmacological agent.

Prophylactic agent:

A drug used to prevent disease.

Prophylactic drugs:

Drugs that prevent or decrease the severity of a disease.

Prostaglandins (PGs):

Any of a group of endogenous, chemically related, hydroxy fatty acids that stimulate contractility of uterine and other smooth muscle and have the ability to lower blood pressure, regulate stomach acid secretion, regulate body temperature, regulate platelet aggregation, and control inflammation and vascular permeability and affect certain hormones.

Protease inhibitor (PI):

A drug that prevents the cleavage of certain HIV protein precursors needed for the replication of new infectious virions.

Prothrombin time (PT):

A test that assesses the function of the extrinsic pathways of the coagulation system; affected by warfarin.

Proton pump inhibitors:

Drugs that block gastric acid secretion by inhibiting the parietal cell adenosine triphosphate (ATP) pump.


Single-cell organisms that inhabit water and soil.


A single-cell organism that can only divide within a host organism. Malaria is caused by a protozoa: Plasmodium.


Itching often of undamaged skin.


A skin disorder characterized by patches of red, scaly skin that are slightly raised with defined margins; usually occurs on the elbows and knees but can affect any part of the body.


Paralytic drooping of the upper eyelid.

Pulmonary embolism (PE):

Sudden blocking of the pulmonary artery by a blood clot.

Pulse dosing:

A regimen of dosing one week per month; commonly used for treating fungal nail infections.


A class of antibiotics with rapid bactericidal action against most gram-negative and many gram-positive bacteria; work by causing DNA breakage and cell death; cross the blood-brain barrier.


A protein molecule on the surface of or within a cell that recognizes and binds with specific molecules, thereby producing some effect within the cell.

Recombinant DNA:

A technique that uses living organisms or parts of organisms for specific purposes such as creating a synthetic drug like insulin.


Backflow; specifically in GERD, the backflow of acidic stomach contents across an incompetent lower esophageal sphincter.


Lack of responsiveness of cancer cells to chemotherapy.

Respiratory distress syndrome (RDS):

A syndrome occurring in newborns that is characterized by acute asphyxia with hypoxia and acidosis.


Immature red blood cells.

Reversible ischemic neurologic deficit (RIND):

Neurologic changes that reverse spontaneously but less rapidly than a TIA.

Reye's syndrome:

A condition that can develop in children who have been exposed to chicken pox or other viral infections and are given aspirin; characterized by amnesia, lethargy, disorientation, and agitation that can culminate in coma and respiratory failure.

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA):

An autoimmune disease in which the body's immune system attacks its own connective tissue; characterized by inflammation of the synovial membrane of the joints.

Rhinitis medicamentosa:

A condition of decreased response that results when nasal decongestants are used over prolonged periods.

Ribonucleic acid (RNA):

An important component of genetic code that arranges amino acids into proteins.


A toxin derived from the castor bean that acts by inhibiting protein synthesis.


A potent protein toxin made from the waste left over from processing castor beans.


A fungus that infects the horny (scaly) layer of skin or the nails; also called tinea.

Route of administration:

A way of getting a drug onto or into the body; on a prescription, the indication of that method.


A class of nonnarcotic analgesics that have both pain-relieving and antipyretic (fever-reducing) properties.


Any of a group of related compounds derived from salicylic acid, which inhibit prostaglandin synthesis and have analgesic, antipyretic, and antiinflammatory activity; included are acetylsalicylic acid.


Mild salicylate intoxication, characterized by ringing in the ears, dizziness, headache, and mental confusion.

Saline laxatives:

Laxatives that attract water into the hollow portion of the colon, or lumina, and increase intraluminal pressure.


A chronic psychotic disorder manifested by retreat from reality, delusions, hallucinations, ambivalence, withdrawal, and bizarre or regressive behavior.


A skin condition caused by excessive secretion by the sebaceous glands; gives the skin an oily appearance.

Secondary diabetes:

Diabetes caused by drugs.


A form of DM due to mechanisms other than those causing 1º –type 1 DM and type 2 DM Etiology Pancreatitis, pheochromocytoma, acromegaly or by drugs known to impair glucose metabolism–eg, corticosteroids.


Abnormal electrical discharges in the cerebral cortex caused by sudden, excessive firing of neurons; result in a change in behavior of which the patient is not aware.

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs):

A class of antidepressant drugs that block the reuptake of serotonin, with little effect on norepinephrine and fewer side effects.

Semisynthetic drugs:

Drugs that contain both natural and synthetic components.


A systemic inflammatory response to infection resulting from blood-borne infections.


Systemic disease associated with pathogenic microorganisms or their toxins in the blood; often called blood poisoning.

Side effects:

Secondary responses to a drug other than the primary therapeutic effect for which the drug was intended.

Substantia nigra:

A layer of gray substance separating parts of the brain.


Sulfa drugs; a class of bacteriostatic antibiotics that work by blocking a specific step in the biosynthetic pathway of folic acid in bacteria.

sSlow viral infection:

An infection that maintains a progressive course over months or years with cumulative damage to body tissues, ultimately ending in the host's death.

Small lymphocytes:

Memory cells that carry information for the recognition of specific antigens.

Solid tumors:

Tumors that form a solid mass and can be palpated.

Somatic nervous system:

The part of the efferent system of the PNS that regulates the skeletal muscles.

Somatic pain:

Dull, throbbing pain from skin, muscle, and bone.

Stable angina:

A type of angina characterized by effort-induced chest pain from physical activity or emotional stress; usually predictable and reproducible.

Status asthmaticus:

A medical emergency that begins as an asthma attack but does not respond to normal management; can result in loss of consciousness and death.

Status epilepticus:

A serious disorder involving tonic-clonic convulsions that last at least thirty minutes.

Stevens-Johnson syndrome:

A sometimes fatal form of erythema multiform (redness of the skin).


A serious systemic (bodywide) allergic reaction with a characteristic rash involving the skin and mucous membranes, including the buccal mucosa (inside of the mouth).

Stress ulcer:

A peptic ulcer, usually gastric, that occurs in a clinical setting; caused by a breakdown of natural mucosal resistance.

Stretch receptors:

Receptors in the lungs and airways that respond to elongation of muscle, causing a cough.


The result of an event (finite, ongoing, or protracted occurrences) that interrupts oxygen supply to an area of the brain; usually caused by cerebral infarction or cerebral hemorrhage .

Subclavian vein:

A vein in the neck, lying below the clavicle and jugular vein.

Subcutaneous injection:

An injection given into the vascular, fatty layer of tissue under the skin.

Sublingual administration:

Oral administration where a drug is placed under the tongue and is rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream.


Solid formulations containing a drug for rectal or vaginal administration.

Synthetic drug:

A drug that is artificially created but in imitation of natural-occurring substances.

Systemic effect:

An action of a drug that has a generalized, all-inclusive effect on the body.

Systemic use:

The application of a drug by means of absorption into the bloodstream.

Systolic blood pressure:

A blood pressure measurement that measures the pressure during contraction of the heart .

T cells:

Lymphocytes that respond directly to antigens by producing clones; involved in cellular immunity.


Very rapid respiration causing a flushed appearance; a characteristic of emphysema.

Tardive dyskinesia:

Involuntary movements of the mouth, lips, and tongue.


A cell or an organ which is the desired site and affected by a particular hormone.

Technical failure:

An error generated by failure because of location or equipment.


A male sex hormone that is responsible for sperm production, sexual potency, and the maintenance of muscle mass and strength, among other functions.


A class of broad-spectrum bacteriostatic antibiotics that are produced by soil organisms and inhibit protein synthesis by binding to bacterial ribosomes.

Therapeutic agent:

A drug that prevents, cures, diagnoses, or relieves symptoms of a disease.

Therapeutic effect:

The desired pharmacological action of a drug in the treatment of a particular disease state or symptom.

Therapeutic range:

The optimum dose, providing the best chance for successful therapy; dosing below this range has little effect on the healing process while overdosing can lead to toxicity and death.

Thiazide diuretics:

Diuretics that promote sodium and water excretion in the urine, lower the sodium level in vessel walls, and reduce vasoconstriction.


Stationary blood clots.


A key clot promoter, thrombin is an enzyme that presides over the conversion of a substance called fibrinogen to fibrin, the right stuff for a clot.


A decrease in the bone marrow production of blood platelets.

Thyroid gland:

A gland that produces hormones e.g. thyroxin that stimulate various body tissues to increase their activity level.

Thyroid storm:

A life-threatening medical emergency with the symptoms of thyrotoxicosis, but more exaggerated.


Alcohols having the properties of vitamin E.


A decrease in response to the effects of a drug due to its continued administration.


The relationship of a solution to the body's own fluids; measured by determining the number of dissolved particles in solution.


Deposits of sodium urate around a joint usually occur in gout and is painful.

Transient ischemic attack (TIA):

Temporary neurologic changes that occur over a brief period of time; may be a warning sign and predictor of imminent stroke.

Traveler’s diarrhea:

Diarrhea caused by ingesting contaminated food or water; so called because it is often contracted by travelers in countries where the water supply is contaminated.

Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs):

A class of antidepressant drugs that prevent neuron reuptake of norepinephrine and/or serotonin.

Tuberculosis (TB):

A disease of the lungs and other body tissues and organs caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

Type I diabetes:

Insulin-dependent diabetes, in which the pancreas has no ability to produce insulin.

Type II diabetes:

A type of diabetes characterized by insulin insufficiency or by the resistance of the target tissues to the insulin produced.


A local defect or excavation of the surface of an organ or tissue.

Ulcerative colitis:

Irritation and inflammation of the large bowel, causing it to look scraped; characterized by bloody mucus leading to watery diarrhea containing blood, mucus, and pus.

Unipolar depression:

Major depression with no mania.

Unstable angina

A type of angina characterized by chest pain that occurs with increasing frequency, diminishes the patient's ability to work, and has a decreasing response to treatment; may signal an oncoming MI.


The clinical syndrome resulting from renal dysfunction in which excessive products of protein metabolism are retained in the blood.

Urethral route:

Administration of a drug by insertion into the urethra.

Urinary tract infections (UTIs):

Infections caused by bacteria, usually E. coli, that enter via the urethra and progress up the urinary tract; characterized by the presence of bacteria in the urine with localized symptoms.


The introduction of a vaccine, a component of an infectious agent, into the body to produce immunity to the actual agent.

Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS):

A postmarketing surveillance system operated by the FDA and CDC that collects information on adverse events that occur after immunization.

Vaginal route:

Administration of a drug by application of a cream or insertion of a tablet into the vagina.

Variant angina:

A type of angina characterized by chest pain due to coronary artery spasm; usually not stress induced.


The sensation of the room spinning when one gets up or changes positions; can be treated with anti-cholinergic agents.

Very-low-density lipoproteins (VLDLs):

Lipoproteins containing 60% triglycerides and 12% cholesterol.


The development of male characteristics.


An individual viral particle capable of infecting a living cell; consists of nucleic acid surrounded by a capsid (protein shell).


A minute infectious agent that does not have all the components of a cell and thus can replicate only within a living host cell.

Visceral pain:

Sharp, stabbing pain from the organs.


Organic substances that occur in many foods and are necessary for the normal metabolic functioning of the body and are not synthesized within body.

Xanthine derivative:

A drug that causes relaxation of airway smooth muscle, thus causing airway dilation and better air movement .