Popular and familiar term for the scapula, the flat triangular bone at the back of the shoulder.
The word “scapula” (with the accent on the first syllable) is a steal straight from the Latin. The Romans always employed the plural “scapulae”, the shoulder blades. Because the shoulder blade resembles the blade of a trowel (a small shovel), the word “scapula” is thought to have come from the Greek “skaptein” meaning “to dig.”
The wing bone (aka scapula) also is sometimes called the shoulder blade or the blade bone.
- Wisdom tooth
One of the large molars in the very back of the jaw. The human jaw has changed in size over the course of evolution, and wisdom teeth are no longer needed, but they continue to erupt in many individuals. If the jaw is too small to accommodate them, they may cause pain or crowd other […]
- Witch's milk
A folk term for the milk that often comes from the breast of a newborn baby. This temporary phenomenon is due to stimulation of the baby’s breasts by the mother’s hormones that cross the placenta during pregnancy. The ability of the baby’s breasts to respond in this fashion is a mark of baby born at […]
- Withdrawal symptoms
Abnormal physical or psychological features that follow the abrupt discontinuation of a drug that has the capability of producing physical dependence. In example, common opiates withdrawal symptoms include sweating, goosebumps, vomiting, anxiety, insomnia, and muscle pain.
- Withdrawal, penis
A method of contraception, also called coitus interruptus, in which the man withdraws his penis from the vagina before ejaculation. Fertilization is prevented because the sperm do not enter the vagina. The effectiveness of this maneuver depends on the man’s ability to withdraw before the ejaculation of any sperm. Withdrawal does not provide protection from […]
- Witkop syndrome
A genetic disorder characterized by the absence of several teeth at birth and abnormalities of the nails. The disorder is also known as hypodontia and nail dysgenesis or, more picturesquely, as the tooth and nail syndrome (TNS). The tooth and nail defects in the syndrome are highly variable. The number and type of congenitally missing […]