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Albumin

Protein found in blood.

Anisocytosis

Inequality in the size of red blood cells.

Antibody

Protein made by white blood cells in response to foreign substances (antigens) in the blood.

Anticoagulant

Substance that prevents blood clotting.

Antigen

Foreign agent that stimulates the production of an antibody.

Basophil

White blood cell (leukocyte) containing dark granules that stain with a basic dye.

Bilirubin

Orange-yellow pigment found in bile. It is released from the breakdown of hemoglobin when red blood cells die.

Coagulation

Process of blood clotting.

Coagulopathy

Disease of blood clotting.

Colony-stimulating factor

Protein that stimulates the growth and proliferation of white blood cells (granulocytes).

Cytology

Study of cells.

Differentiation

Specialization of cells from immature to mature forms.

Electrophoresis

Technique used to separate serum proteins by electrical charge.

Eosinophil

White blood cell whose granules stain intensely with an acidic eosin (reddish) dye; elevated in allergic reactions.

Eosinophilia

Increase in numbers of eosinophils in the bloodstream.

Erythroblast

Immature, developing red blood cell.

Erythrocytopenia

Deficiency of red blood cells.

Erythropoiesis

Formation of red blood cells.

Erythropoietin

Substance (hormone) produced by the kidney to stimulate bone marrow to produce erythrocytes.

Fibrin

Protein threads that form the basis of a blood clot.

Fibrinogen

Plasma protein that is converted to fibrin in the clotting process.

Globulins

Major blood proteins; immunoglobulins, alpha, beta and gamma globulins are examples.

Granulocyte

White blood cell with numerous dark-staining granules; neutrophil, eosinophil and basophil.

Granulocytopenia

Deficiency of granulocytes.

Hematopoiesis

Formation of blood cells.

Hemoglobin

Blood protein containing iron; carries oxygen in red blood cells.

Hemoglobinopathy

Disease or defect of hemoglobin production. Sickle cell anemia is an example.

Hemolysis

Destruction or breakdown of blood; specifically red blood cells.

Hemostasis

Stoppage of bleeding or circulation of blood.

Heparin

Anticoagulant found in blood and tissues.

Hypochromic

Pertaining to deficiency in color; decrease in hemoglobin in red blood cells.

Immune system

Response of the immune system to foreign invasion.

Immunoglobulin

Antibody-containing protein in the blood; IgA, IgG, IgM,

Leukapheresis

Mechanical separation of white blood cells from the rest of the blood.

Leukocyte

White blood cell.

Leukocytopenia

Deficiency of white blood cells.

Lymphocyte

White blood cell with a single nucleus (mononuclear); capable of producing antibodies.

Macrocytosis

Presence of large red blood cells in the blood.

Macrophage

Large phagocytic cell migrating from the blood into tissues.

Megakaryocyte

Large, giant cell with a big nucleus; platelet precursor found in the bone marrow.

Microcytosis

Increased numbers of smaller than normal red blood cells.

Monoblast

Immature monocyte.

Monocyte

White blood cell (agranulocyte) with one large nucleus; enter tissues as macrophages.

Mononuclear

Pertaining to a white blood cell with a single, round nucleus; monocyte or lymphocyte.

Morphology

Study of the shape and form of cells, particularly red blood cells.

Myeloblast

Immature granulocytic while blood cell; a cell normally only found in the bone marrow.

Myeloid

Derived from bone marrow.

Myelogenous

Pertaining to cells produced in the bone marrow.

Myelopoiesis

Formation and development of bone marrow or cells that originate from it.

Neutropenia

Deficiency of neutrophils.

Neutrophil

White blood cell with dark granules that stain with a neutral dye; phagocyte formed in the bone marrow and the body's first line of defense against disease.

Neutrophilia

Increased numbers of neutrophils.

Pancytopenia

Deficiency of all (blood) cells.

Phagocyte

Cell that engulfs another cell or foreign organism and destroys it.

Plasma

Liquid portion of blood containing proteins, water, salts, nutrients, hormones and vitamins.

Plasmapheresis

Removal of plasma from withdrawn blood by centrifuge.

Platelet

Clotting cell or thrombocyte.

Plateletpheresis

Separation of platelets from the rest of the blood.

Poikilocytosis

Variation in the shape of red blood cells.

Polymorphonuclear

Pertaining to a multi-lobed nucleus (in granulocytic white blood cells).

Prothrombin

Plasma protein converted to thrombin in the clotting process.

Reticulocyte

Immature erythrocyte with a network of strands (reticulum).

Rh factor

Antigen (protein) on red blood cells of Rh positive individuals.

Serum

Plasma minus clotting proteins (prothrombin and fibrinogen) and clotting cells.

Sideropenia

Deficiency of iron in the blood.

Spherocytosis

Increase in numbers of sphere-shaped red blood cells, as in a type of anemia (hemolytic anemia).

Stem cell

Unspecialized cell that gives rise to all forms of specialized cells in the body. Hematopoietic stem cells are found in the bone marrow and lead to the development of all types of blood cells.

Thrombin

Enzyme necessary for blood clotting (converts fibrinogen to fibrin in the clotting process).

Thrombocyte

Platelet; clotting cell.

Thrombocytopenia

Deficiency of clotting cells.

Thrombolytic therapy

Treatment with drugs to break down clots that may abnormally form in blood vessels.

Thrombosis

Condition of clot formation.

Acute lymphocytic leukemia

Malignant, immature lymphocytes multiply in the blood, bone marrow, and lymphatic system.

Acute myelogenous leukemia

Malignant, immature granulocytes called myeloblasts multiply in the bone marrow and bloodstream.

Antiglobulin test

Test for the presence of antibodies that coat and damage erythrocytes; Coombs test.

Apheresis

Withdrawal and separation of blood elements.

Aplastic anemia

Failure of blood cell production due to aplasia (absence of formation) of bone marrow cells.

Autologous transfusion

Removal and then reinfusion of a patient's own blood or blood components.

Bleeding time

Time required for blood to stop flowing from a tiny puncture wound.

Blood transfusion

Blood cells or whole blood from a closely match donor are infused into a patient.

Bone marrow biopsy

Needle aspiration of a small amount of bone marrow followed by examination under a microscope.

Chronic lymphocytic leukemia

Malignant, but relatively mature lymphocytes, multiply in bone marrow, lymph nodes, and spleen.

Chronic myelogenous leukemia

Malignant, but relatively mature granulocytic leukocytes multiply in the bloodstream.

Coagulation time

Time required for venous blood to clot in a test tube.

Complete blood count

Determination of the number of red and white blood cells, platelets, hemoglobin, hematocrit, and red cell indices (MCH, MCV, MCHC) in a sample of blood.

Dyscrasia

Blood disease.

Ecchymoses

Large blue or purplish patches on the skin (bruises).

Erythrocyte sedimentation rate

Measurement of the speed at which erythrocytes settle or fall to the bottom of a test tube.

Granulocytosis

Increased numbers of granulocytes in the blood.

Hematocrit

Percentage of red blood cells in a given volume of blood.

Hematopoietic stem cell transplant

Peripheral (found in the blood) stem cells from a compatible donor are administered into the vein of a recipient.

Hemochromatosis

Excessive deposits of iron throughout the body.

Hemoglobin test

Total amount of hemoglobin in a sample of blood.

Hemolytic anemia

Reduction in erythrocytes due to excessive destruction of red blood cells.

Hemophilia

Hereditary disease of blood clotting failure with abnormal bleeding. Affected individuals are lacking a blood clotting factor (factor VIII or factor IX).

Intrinsic factor

Substance normally found in gastric (stomach) juice that helps absorption of vitamin B12 into the bloodstream.

Mononucleosis

Infectious disease marked by increased numbers of leukocytes and enlarged cervical lymph nodes.

Multiple myeloma

Malignant tumor of bone marrow; overproduction of immunoglobulins and destruction of bone tissue.

Palliative

Relieving, but not curing illness.

Partial thromboplastin time

Measurement of presence of plasma factors that act in a portion of the coagulation pathway.

Pernicious anemia

Lack of mature erythrocytes caused by inability to absorb vitamin B12 into the body.

Petechiae

Small, pinpoint hemorrhages caused by bleeding under the skin.

Platelet count

Number of platelets per cubic millimeter (mm3 ) or microliter ( L) of blood.

Polycythemia vera

Increase in numbers of red blood cells (erythremia).

Prothrombin time

Test of the ability of blood to clot.

Purpura

Multiple pinpoint hemorrhages and accumulation of blood under the skin caused by deficiency of clotting cells (platelets).

Red blood cell count

Number of erythrocytes per cubic millimeter or microliter of blood.

Red blood cell morphology

Microscopic examination of a stained blood smear to determine the shape of individual red blood cells.

Relapse

Return of symptoms of disease.

Remission

Disappearance of symptoms of disease.

Sickle cell anemia

Hereditary condition marked by abnormal sickle shape of erythrocytes and by hemolysis.

Thalassemia

Inherited defect in the ability to produce hemoglobin, usually seen in persons of Mediterranean background.

White blood cell count

Number of leukocytes per cubic millimeter or microliter of blood.

White blood cell differential

Percentage of the total white blood cell count made up by different types of leukocytes.

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