Aerospace medicine: The fields of medicine concerned with the maintenance of health, safety, and performance of those in aviation and space travel. Aerospace medicine is the sum of aviation medicine and space medicine — health in flight both inside and outside the Earth’s atmosphere.
Aviation medicine is the study of the biological and psychological effects of aviation. Medically significant aspects of aviation travel include exposure to changing temperatures, large inertial forces, oxygen deprivation, and air sickness, as well as pilot fatigue. Aviation medicine is concerned, for instance, with the spread of disease by air travel and the adverse effects of noise and air pollution.
Space medicine is the study of the biological and psychological effects of space travel. Medically significant aspects of space travel include weightlessness, strong inertial forces during liftoff and reentry, radiation exposure, absence of the day and night, and existence in a closed environment. Space medicine is concerned, for instance, with osteoporosis caused by weightlessness and the resultant increased risk of fractures.
Aerotitis: Middle ear problems due to changing atmospheric pressures, as when a plane descends to land. Symptoms include ear pain, ringing ears, diminished hearing and, sometimes, dizziness. Also known as aerotitis media, barotitis, barotitis media, and otic barotrauma.
Aesculapius: The ancient Roman god of medicine, whose staff with a snake curled around it is commonly used as a symbol of medicine. According to mythology, Aesculapius’s children included Hygeia, the goddess of health, and Panaceia, the goddess of healing.
Aetiology: The study of the causes. For example, of a disorder. The word “aetiology” is mainly used in medicine, where it is the science that deals with the causes or origin of disease, the factors which produce or predispose toward a certain disease or disorder. Today in medicine one hears (or reads) that “the aetiology […]
Affect: The emotional tone a person expresses. A person’s affect may be appropriate or inappropriate to the situation. One type of inappropriate affect is a flat affect or blunted affect, a common feature of schizophrenia.
- Affective disorder, seasonal (SAD)
Affective disorder, seasonal (SAD): Depression that tends to occur (and recur) as the days grow shorter in the fall and winter. It is believed that affected persons react adversely to the decreasing amounts of light and the colder temperatures as the fall and winter progress. Seasonal affective disorder has not been recognized very long as […]