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Glossary

Allogeneic Blood – Blood from a donor.

Alloimmunization – Development of antibodies in response to foreign substances such as antigens.

Anemia – Insufficiency of red blood cells, either of quality or quantity.

Antibody – A substance produced in the blood of an individual which is capable of producing a specific immunity to a specific germ or virus.

Antifibrinolytic – Stops fibrinolysis (the splitting up or dissolution of fibrin).

Antigen – Any substance that stimulates the production of an antibody.

Argon Beam Coagulator A surgical tool that uses a beam of ionized argon to conduct a high-frequency electric current to stop bleeding of tissues.

Autologous Blood Product – Blood that is pre-donated by the patient prior to surgery, or collected during a surgical procedure. The blood is prevented from clotting and preserved for re-infusion to that patient during surgery or just after surgery.

Autologous Blood – The patient's own blood.

Autotransfusion – Re-infusion of a patient's own blood.

Bone Marrow – The soft tissue inside bones where blood cells are formed

Cell Saver or Intraoperative Blood Salvage Recovers portion of patient’s shed blood from a wound or body cavity. The blood is recovered via suction, cleaned and re-infused to the patient in a continuous circuit.

Coagulate – To clot

Colloids – Intravenous fluids used to maintain blood protein levels that stabilize fluid balances and circulation volume in the body.

Complements – Eleven specific enzymatic proteins occurring in normal serum which interact and destroy foreign cellular bodies.

Cryoprecipitates – A blood fraction used to treat deficiencies of Factor VIII, Factor XIII, and fibrinogen.

Crystalloids – Intravenous fluids made up of water with various dissolved salts and sugars. These fluids are used to help maintain circulating blood volume in the body.

Dextran – An intravenous fluid used as a plasma volume expander.

Electrocautery – A device in which an electric current is used to heat a treatment instrument or probe. The heated probe cauterizes capillary vessels and small arteries, thus minimizing blood loss during surgery. Also called thermal cautery, this device does not transfer any electric current to the patient.

Electrosurgery – The passage of very high frequency electrical current through tissue to create a desired surgical effect. Specialized “pencils” or electrodes and a generator are used to deliver electrical energy to ‘cut’ tissue and/or coagulate blood. Unlike electroacautery, the tip of the electrosurgery instrument itself is not heated.

Endoscope A tube-like device that allows physicians to view the internal structures of the digestive tract and other body cavities without traditional open surgery. Its greatest use involves quickly finding and controlling internal bleeding in the stomach and intestines.

Fibrin – A protein essential for the clotting of blood.

Folic acid – A member of the vitamin B complex that is necessary for red blood cell production. It can be recommended almost universally in any case of anemia.

Free Plasma Hemoglobin – Hemoglobin found in plasma due to rupture of red blood cells.

Gelatin – A member of the colloid family of IV fluids, used as a plasma substitute.

Hemodilution – A technique that involves the collection of several units of blood from the patient immediately before surgery and the replacement of that blood volume with an IV solution. The patient's existing blood supply is thus diluted and consequently any blood that is lost in surgery contains very little whole blood but a highly diluted mixture of blood and solution. The withdrawn blood is returned slowly without being stored or having the circuit disconnected.

Hemoglobin – The pigment in red blood cells which carries oxygen to the tissues.

Hetastarch – An IV fluid used as a volume expander.

Homologous Blood Product – Blood product obtained from a donor other than the patient.

Immunoglobulins – Antibodies produced in the lymphatic cells to combat infections or other invading substances.

Laparoscope – A device similar to an endoscope that is used to view internal structures of the abdominal cavity. The laparoscope is inserted through a small incision and other specialized instruments may be inserted in other nearby small incisions to perform surgical interventions.

Laser – A device similar in principle to an electrocautery device, but employing laser energy to cut, vaporize, and simultaneously coagulate a targeted area without disrupting adjacent tissue.

Leukocytes – White blood cells that fight infection.

Mechanical Anti-Shock Trousers – (M.A.S.T.) A device used to help control shock by compressing the legs and causing pooled blood to be forced into circulation. This assures blood flow to vital organs.

Microsampling – Technique that restricts the quantity and frequency of blood sampling for lab tests. In many cases, a complete run of tests can be done from only a few drops of blood.

Microwave coagulating scalpel – A device that employs microwave energy to perform similar activity to that of electrocautery, but is capable of cauterizing greater areas of tissue at one time. This device has limited availability and is useful mainly for surgery on highly vascular organs such as the liver and spleen.

Minimally Invasive Surgery – An approach to surgery whereby operations are performed with specialized instruments designed to be inserted through small incisions or natural body openings. This avoids the need for large incisions, minimizing bleeding and trauma to the body.

Normal Saline – One of the most widely used intravenous solutions.

NovoSeven – introduced in the United States in March 1999, is the first and only recombinant factor VIIa product. It is used to control bleeding and promote coagulation of blood.  NovoSeven is a part of a series of reactions that produce blood coagulation by working directly with tissue factor at the site of a hemorrhage to accomplish clotting.  It can be used in trauma cases, surgery and other situations where bleeding is out of control or severe. NovoSeven contains no human albumin or human plasma-derived proteins. However, it does contain trace amounts of mouse immune globulins which makes it a personal decision for use by Jehovah's Witnesses.

Pentastarch – An IV fluid used as a blood volume expander.

Perfluorochemicals (PFC) – Intravenous fluids that have the ability to carry oxygen. Sometimes referred to as “oxygen-carrying blood substitutes.”

Plasma – The fluid portion of the blood minus the red and white blood cells.

Platelets – The small colorless disks in circulating blood which aid in blood clotting.

Radiosurgery – Conventional radiation treatment for cancer exposes tumors and surrounding tissue to repeated low doses of radiation over an extended period. Radiotherapy employs a single highly focused beam of radiation to perform tissue destruction. Stereotactic radiosurgery is an image-guided, non-invasive procedure whereby multiple precisely targeted, highly focused beams of radiation intersect at the tumor location to deliver a large dose of radiation to the tumor or lesion with minimal radiation to adjacent normal tissue. Radiation is concentrated on the target by moving the energy source and firing from many directions or by simultaneously firing multiple beams from a static array of radiation sources.

Red Blood Cells – Red blood cells (also called erythrocytes) serve two important functions: 1. Carry oxygen from the lungs to cells in all parts of the body. Oxygen helps cells obtain energy from food. 2. Take carbon dioxide back to the lungs from the cells; carbon dioxide is released as a waste product of cell processes

Ringer's Lactate – An IV solution used primarily for volume expansion during acute blood loss.

Shaw hemostatic scalpel – A device that cauterizes while it cuts, employing an electrically heated metal cutting blade.

White Blood Cells – Colorless blood cells that fight infection.



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