A balloon-like swelling in the wall of the aorta within the abdomen. This swelling weakens the aorta’s wall and, because of the great volume of blood flowing under high pressure in the aorta, it can rupture. An abdominal aortic aneurysm is monitored by ultrasound. Surgery is often recommended if the aneurysm is more than 5.5 centimeters (2.2 inches) in diameter or if a smaller aneurysm is enlarging with unusual rapidity.
- Abdominal pain
Pain in the belly. Abdominal pain can be acute or chronic. It may reflect a major problem with one of the organs in the abdomen, such as appendicitis or a perforated intestine, or it may result from a fairly minor problem, such as excess buildup of intestinal gas.
- Abdominal guarding
Abdominal guarding: Tensing of the abdominal wall muscles to guard inflamed organs within the abdomen from the pain of pressure upon them. Abdominal guarding is detected when the abdomen is pressed and is an indication that inflammation of the inner abdominal (peritoneal) surface may be present due, for example, to appendicitis or diverticulitis. The tensed […]
Aberration: (1) A deviation or irregularity. For example, a chromosome aberration is a deviation from the normal chromosome number or the normal chromosome structure. In this sense, aberration is also synonymous with deflection, departure, divergence, diversion, turning. (2) A mental aberration is a significant deviation from normal mental activity. In this sense, aberration is synonymous […]
- Abdominal muscles
Abdominal muscles: A large group of muscles in the front of the abdomen that assists in the regular breathing movement and supports the muscles of the spine while lifting and keeping abdominal organs such as the intestines in place. Abdominal muscles play a key role in exercises such as “sit-ups.” They are informally called the […]
Abiotic: 1. Not associated with living organisms. 2. Anything in the environment incapable of life, such as the soil or weather. 3. Incompatible with life or antagonist to it. Also called abiological.