A result that indicates that a given condition is present when it is not. An example of a false positive would be if a particular test designed to detect cancer returns a positive result but the person does not have ‘cancer.
- Positron emission tomography
Unlike CT or MRI, which look at anatomy or body form, PET studies metabolic activity or body function. As a result, PET can detect tumors in lymph nodes, for example, even before they enlarge and are detectable with MRI or CT. In PET imaging, the patient receives a small intravenous injection of a radio-active medication […]
Short for postmortem examination (an autopsy).
- Post-exposure prophylaxis
A treatment administered following exposure to a harmful agent which attempts to block or reduce injury or infection. Prophylaxis means a defense or protection. Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP), for example, might concern the treatment of a health care worker exposed by a needle stick to HIV with a drug such as AZT to protect them from […]
- Post-nasal drip
Mucous accumulation in the back of the nose and throat leading to or giving the sensation of mucus dripping downward from the back of the nose.
- Post-polio muscular atrophy (PPMA)
Belated muscle wasting that occurs as part of the post-polio syndrome (PPS), a constellation of symptoms and signs that appear late, from 20 to 40 years after the initial polio infection and at least 10 years after what was once thought to be the “recovery” from polio. PPS is no small problem. It is estimated […]