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Glossary: Anemia

Friday, April 12, 2013 - 17:21

Contributing Author: Guy Slowik FRCS

Here are definitions of medical terms related to anemia.

Erythrocyte: A mature red blood cell (RBC)

Hematocrit: The volume of red blood cells in a given volume of blood.

Hemoglobin: Iron-containing pigment of the red blood cells that carries oxygen from the lungs to the tissues.

Hemolysis: The destruction of the membrane of red blood cells.

Jaundice: A condition characterized by yellowness of the skin and whites of the eyes. It may be caused by obstruction of bile passageways, excessive destruction of red blood cells or a disturbance in the liver.

Marrow: The soft tissue occupying the cavities of many bones, including the breastbone. Marrow is of two types: red and yellow. Red marrow is found in spongy bones, yellow is found in the cavities of the long bones.

Plasma: The liquid part of the blood

Spleen: A dark red, oval organ in the upper left abdominal quadrant posterior. The spleen removes old red blood cells from circulation.

Tachycardia: An abnormally rapid heart rate, usually defined as a rate greater than 100 beats per minute.