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Chapter 3 Health Terms

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Anatomic Position
Standing erect, arms at the side, palms of the hands facing forward, and feet placed side by side.
anter/o
front
caud/o
tail (downward)
cephal/o
head (upward)
dist/o
away
infer/o
below
later/o
side
medi/o
middle
poster/o
back, behind
proxim/o
near (the point of attachment of a body part)
super/o
above
ventr/o
belly (front)
bi
two
uni
one
ad
toward
ior
pertaining to
caudad
toward the tail (downward)
cephalad
toward the head (upward)
lateral
pertaining to a side
medial (med)
pertaining to the middle
unilateral
pertaining to one side (only)
bilateral
pertaining to two sides
mediolateral
pertaining to the middle and to the side
distal
pertaining to away (from the point of attachment of a body part)
proximal
pertaining to near (to the point of attachment of a body part)
inferior (inf)
pertaining to below
superior (sup)
pertaining to above
caudal
pertaining to the tail (similar to inferior)
cephalic
pertaining to the head
anterior (ant)
pertaining to the front
posterior
pertaining to the back
dorsal
pertaining to the back
ventral
pertaining to the belly (front)
anteroposterior (AP)
pertaining to the front and to the back
posteroanterior (PA)
pertaining to the back and to the front
Frontal/coronal plane
vertical field passing through the body from side to side, dividing the body into anterior and posterior portions
midsagittal plane
vertical field running through the body from front to back at the midline, dividing the body equally into right and left halves.
parasagittal
vertical field running through the body from front to back, dividing the body into unequal left and right sides.
sagittal
vertical field running through the body from front to back, dividing the body into right and left sides (any plane parallel to the midsagittal plane)
transverse
horizontal field dividing the body into superior and inferior portions.
Fowler position
semi-sitting position with slight elevation of the knees.
lithotomy position
lying on back with legs raised and feet in stirrups
orthopnea position
sitting erect in a chair or sitting upright in bed supported by pillows behind the head and chest
prone position
lying on abdomen, facing downward
recumbent position
lying down in any position
sims position
lying on left side with right knee drawn up and with left arm drawn behind, parallel to the back.
supine position
lying on back, facing upward
trendelenburg position
lying on back with body tilted so that the head is lower than the feet
umbilical region
around the navel (umbilicus)
lumbar regions
to the right and left of the umbilical region, near the waist
epigastric region
superior to the umbilical region, generally above the stomach
hypochondriac regions
to the right and left of the epigastric region
hypogastric region
inferior to the umbilical region
iliac regions
to the right and left of the hypogastric region, near the groin (aka inguinal regions)
right upper quadrant
area encompassing the right lobe of the liver, the gall bladder, part of the pancreas, and portions of the small and large intestines
left upper quadrant
area encompassing the left lobe of the liver, the stomach, the spleen, part of the pancreas, and portions of the small and large intestines
right lower quadrant
area encompassing portions of the small and large intestines, the appendix, the right ureter, and the right ovary and uterine tube in women or the right spermatic duct in men.
left lower quadrant
area encompassing portions of the small and large intestines, the left ureter, and the left ovary and uterine tube in women or the left spermatic duct in men.
ant
anterior
AP
anteroposterior
inf
inferior
lat
lateral
LLQ
left lower quadrant
LUQ
left upper quadrant
med
medial
PA
posteroanterior
RLQ
right lower quadrant
RUQ
Right upper quadrant
sup
superior