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Sunday, January 27, 2008

Glossary H


Medicines that reduce the amount of acid the stomach produces.
Health related quality of life
The impact an illness has on quality of life, including the individual's perception of his or her illness.
Health-related quality of life (HRQL) measures
Patient outcome measures that extend beyond traditional measures of mortality and morbidity, to include such dimensions as physiology, function, social activity, cognition, emotion, sleep and rest, energy and vitality, health perception, and general life satisfaction. (Some of these are also known as health status, functional status, or quality of life measures.)
Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori)
A bacterium that can damage stomach and duodenal tissue, causing ulcers.
Veins around the anus or lower rectum that are swollen and inflamed.
Related to the liver.
The passing of a trait from parent to offspring through genetically coded information
Genetically transmitted or transmittable from parent to offspring.
The extent to which a trait is influenced by our genetic makeup.
Hiatal hernia
A small opening in the diaphragm that allows the upper part of the stomach to move up into the chest.
Hirschsprung's disease
A rare congenital disorder that is caused by absence of nerve cells (ganglion) in the rectum and/or colon.
Maintenance of a relatively stable or balanced internal body state despite environmental fluctuations. The tendency in an organism toward maintenance of physiological and psychological stability.
HPA (hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal) axis
A system within the body that responds to stress by stimulating or inhibiting the release of various hormones, in particular cortisol, into the blood which then stimulates systems essential to self-preservation.
Lowered threshold to pain.
An increased or exaggerated response to stimuli.
Increased vigilance. An intensified state of paying attention to or focusing on specific things. May severely limit a person's ability to focus on specific tasks or engage in reflective thinking when their focus is on scanning for threatening stimuli. A person with a functional GI disorder or incontinence may be hypervigilant when their focus is on scanning for bodily sensations or indications that signal symptom onset.

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