Medical Terminology - A Living Language - Ch 6 - Section II - Vocabulary

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Lymphatic and immune systems vocabulary

lymphatic system

• consists of a network of lymphatic vessels, lymph nodes, the spleen, the thymus gland, and the tonsils
• organs collect excess tissue fluid thought the body and return it to the circulatory system
• works with the immune system to form the groups of cells, tissues, organs, and molecules that serve as the body's primary defense against the invasion of pathogens and removing our own cells that have become diseased

lymph

fluid inside a lymphatic vessel

lacteals

lymph vessels around the small intestines that are able to pick up absorbed fats for transport

lymphatic vessels

• form an extensive network of vessels throughout the entire body, however they are not in a closed loop like the circulatory system
• serve as one-way pipes conducting lymph from the tissues toward the thoracic cavity
• since it's a low pressure system, these vessels have valves along their length to ensure the lymph can only move forward to the thoracic cavity
• the vessels drain into one of two large lymphatic ducts: right lymphatic duct or the thoracic duct

lymphatic capillaries

very small capillaries in the tissues where excessive tissue fluid enters to begin the trip back to the circulatory system via lymphatic vessels

right lymphatic duct

smaller of the two lymphatic ducts, drains the right arm and the right side of the neck and chest and empties lymph into the right subclavian vein

thoracic duct

larger of the two lymphatic ducts, drains lymph from the rest of the body and empties into the left subclavian vein

lymph nodes

• lymph glands
• small organs composed of lymphatic tissue located along the route of the lymphatic vessels
• house lymphocytes and antibodies and therefore work to remove pathogens and cell debris as lymph passes though them on its way back to the thoracic cavity
• also serve to trap and destroy cells from cancerous tumors

lymph glands

lymph nodes

sites for lymph nodes

• axillary: located near the armpits, drain arms and shoulder region; breast cancer cells may be detected at this site
• cervical: located near the neck, drain head and neck; may be enlarged during upper respiratory infections
• inguinal: located near the groin, drain legs and lower pelvis
• mediastinal: located near the chest, drain chest cavity

tonsils

• a collection of lymphatic tissue located on each side of the throat or pharynx
• there three sets of tonsils: palatine tonsils, pharyngeal tonsils (adenoids), lingual tonsils
• all tonsils contain a large number of leukocytes and act as filters to protect the body from the invasion of pathogens through the digestive and respiratory systems

pharynx

throat

adenoids

pharyngeal tonsils

spleen

• located in the upper left quadrant of the abdomen, consists of lymphatic tissue that is highly infiltrated with blood vessels that spread out into the blood sinuses
• it filters out and destroys old red blood cells, recycles the iron, and also store some of the blood supply for the body

blood sinuses

spread-out blood vessels within the spleen that result in slow-moving blood flow.

macrophage

large phagocytic cells in the body that that identify and remove pathogens and worn-out red blood cells; ingesting and digesting any pathogen they encounter

thymus gland

• located in the upper portion of the mediastinum and is essential for the proper development of the immune system
• it assists the body with immune function and the development of antibodies
• produces thymosin which changes lymphocytes to T cells

thymosin

hormone produced by the thymus gland; changes lymphocytes to T lymphocytes (T cells)

T lymphocytes

• T cells
• produced when thymosin changes lymphocytes and plays an important role in the immune response

T cells

T lymphocytes

natural immunity

• innate immunity
• is not specific to a particular disease and does not require prior exposure to the pathogenic agent, e.g. macrophages ability to attack pathogens

passive acquired immunity

results when a person receives protective substances produced by another human or animal, e.g. maternal antibodies crossing the placenta or an antitoxin or gamma globulin injection

active acquired immunity

• develops following direct exposure to a pathogenic agent which stimulates the body's immune response; once the body has successfully defeated a virus, it will be able to more quickly recognize and kill it in the future
• immunizations (vaccinations) are special types of active acquired immunity, a person is exposed to a modified or weakened pathogen that is capable of stimulating the immune response but not actually causing the disease

immune response

• a series of different mechanisms all geared to neutralize a pathogen
• consists of two distinct and different processes: humoral immunity (antibody-mediated immunity) and cellular immunity (cell-mediated immunity)

antigens

foreign proteins that stimulate the immune response

humoral immunity

• antibody-mediated immunity
• the production of B lymphocytes (B cells) which respond to antigens by producing antibodies

antibody

a protective protein produced in response to an antigen

antigen-antibody complex

complex either targets the foreign substance for phagocytosis or prevents the infectious agent from damaging healthy cells

cellular immunity

• cell-mediated immunity
• involves the production of T cells and natural killer (NK) cells which physically attack and destroy pathogenic cells

natural killer cells

• NK
• cytotoxic cell which physically attack and destroy pathogenic cells

cytotoxic

• cells which physically attack and destroy pathogenic cells
• Example: T cells, natural killer cells

nosocomial infection

an infection acquired as a result of hospital exposure

cross infection

a nosocomial infection which occurs when a person acquires a pathogen from another patient or healthcare worker

reinfection

a nosocomial infection which takes place when a patient becomes infected again with the same pathogen that originally brought them to the hospital

self-infection

a nosocomial infection which occurs when a person becomes infected in a different part of the body by a pathogen from another part of their own body

allergen

an antigen that causes an allergic reaction

autoimmune disease

• a disease resulting from the body's immune system attacking its own cells as if they were pathogens
• Example: systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, and multiple sclerosis

hives

appearance of wheals as part of an allergic reaction

immunocompromised

• immunodeficiency disorder
• having an immune system that is unable to respond properly to pathogens

immunodeficiency disorder

immunocompromised

immunoglobulins

antibodies secreted by the B cells; all antibodies are immunoglobulins and assist in protecting the body and its surfaces from the invasion of bacteria

inflammation

the tissues' response to injury from pathogens or physical agents; characterized by redness, pain, swelling, and feeling hot to touch

lymphedema

edema appearing in the extremities due to an obstruction of the lymph flow thought the lymphatic vessels

opportunistic infections

infectious diseases associated with patients who have compromised immune systems and therefore a lowered resistance to infections and parasites

urticaria

severe itching associated with hives

anaphylactic shock

• anaphylaxis
• life-threatening condition resulting from a severe allergic reaction

anaphylaxis

anaphylatic shock

elephantiasis

inflammation, obstruction, and destruction of the lymph vessels resulting in enlarged tissues due to edema

Hodgkin's disease

• HD
• Hodgkin's lymphoma
• cancer of the lymphatic cells found in concentration in the lymph nodes

lymphadenitis

• swollen glands
• inflammation of the lymph nodes

swollen glands

lymphadenitis

mononucleosis

acute infectious disease with a large number of abnormal lymphocytes

non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

• NHL
• cancer of the lymphatic tissues other than Hodgkin's lymphoma

AIDS-related complex

• ARC
• early stage of AIDS where there is a positive test for the virus, but only mild symptoms of weight loss, fatigue, skin rash, anorexia

graft vs. host disease

• GVHD
• serious complication of bone marrow transplant (graft) where immune cells from the donor bone marrow attack the recipient's tissues

Kaposi's sarcoma

• KS
• form of skin cancer frequently seen in patients with AIDS; consists of brownish-purple papules that spread from the skin and metastasize to internal organs

Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia

• PCP
• pneumonia common in patients with AIDS that is caused by infection with an opportunistic parasite

sarcoidosis

disease of unknown cause that forms fibrous lesions commonly appearing in the lymph nodes, liver, skin, lungs, spleen, eyes, and small bones of the hands and feet

severe combined immunodeficiency syndrome

• SCIDS
• disease seen in children born with a nonfunctioning immune system; often children forced to live in sealed sterile rooms

lymphangiography

X-ray taken of the lymph vessels after the injection of dye into the foot; the lymph flow through the chest is traced

lymphadenectomy

removal of a lymph node

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