Birth defects, study of: The study of birth defects is now usually called dysmorphology.
Dysmorphology is a term coined by Dr. David W. Smith in the 1960’s to describe the study of human congenital malformations (birth defects), particularly those affecting the morphology (the anatomy) of the individual. Dysmorphology literally mean, “the study of abnormal form.”
A pediatrician, endocrinologist, embryologist and clinical geneticist himself, David Smith (1926-1981) was the seminal figure in the development of dysmorphology as an interdisciplinary area of medicine.
“As a scientific discipline, dysmorphology combines concepts, knowledge, and techniques from the fields of embryology, clinical genetics and pediatrics,” Dr. Jon Aase, one of Dr. Smith’s former students, has noted. “As a medical subspecialty, dysmorphology deals with people who have congenital abnormalities and with their families. Whenever any physician is confronted by a patient with a birth defect, he or she becomes, for the moment at least, a dysmorphologist.” (JM Aase: Diagnostic Dysmorphology, 1990, Plenum, New York).
- Birth rate
Birth rate: The birth rate is usually given as the number of live births divided by the average population (or the population at midyear). This is termed the crude birth rate. In 1995, for example, the crude birth rate per 1,000 population was 14 in the United States, 16.9 in Australia, etc.
A persistent visible mark on the skin that is evident at birth or shortly thereafter. A birthmark is often due to a nevus (a mole) or an hemangioma (a localized collection of small blood vessels). Birthmarks that are pink or red are commonly capillary hemangiomas — collections of tiny blood vessels — that are most […]
- bis in die (on prescription)
bis in die (on prescription): Seen on a prescription, bid means twice (two times) a day. It is an abbreviation for “bis in die” which in Latin means twice a day. The abbreviation bid is sometimes written without a period either in lower-case letters as “bid” or in capital letters as “BID” or with periods […]
- Bisexual suicide risk
Bisexual suicide risk: High rates of suicide have consistently been reported among homosexuals, particularly among adolescents and young adults. A 1989 report concluded that “gay youth are 2 to 3 times more likely to attempt suicide than other young people. They may comprise up to 30% of completed youth suicides annually.” In 1999 it was […]
Bisphosphonate: A class of drugs used to strengthen bone. Bisphosphonates are used to treat osteoporosis and the bone pain from diseases such as metastatic breast cancer, multiple myeloma, and Paget’s disease. Bone is in a constant state of remodeling, whereby new bone is laid down by cells called osteoblasts, while old bone is removed by […]