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Pilonidal (sinus)

Pilonidal (sinus) Quick Reference: Tract containing hair.

Advanced Reference: Tract extending to subcuticular level found in the midline of cleft overlying the coccyx and lower sacrum. Treatment is usually surgical excision.

Pin-index system Quick Reference: Safety system for connection of medical-gas cylinders.

Advanced Reference: An internationally recognised system designed to prevent gas cylinders being connected to the wrong anaesthetic machine yoke. The yoke contains pins which the cylinder head connects to via a set of holes; each individual gas having its unique configuration of pins and holes is identified by numbers, e.g. oxygen = 2 and 5.

Piped-gas supply Quick Reference: Form of medical-gas delivery system. Advanced Reference: Indicates the alternative to cylinder supply. Usually involves oxygen and nitrous oxide delivered to theatres, etc. from a cylinder bank (manifold) area or as is usual for O2, from a liquid tank source.

Piriton Quick Reference: Proprietary antihistamine, chlorpheniramine. Advanced Reference: Used to treat allergic reactions such as hay fever and urticaria.

Pituitary Quick Reference: An endocrine gland positioned at the base of the brain.

Advanced Reference: Also called the hypophysis. Has two lobes, the anterior and the posterior. The hormones of the anterior lobe are themselves regulated by the hypothalamus, which is immediately above the pituitary. Hormones of the pituitary include adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH), thyrotrophic, gonadotrophic, growth, lactogenic and melanophore hormones, while the posterior lobe secretes oxytocin and antidiuretic hormone (ADH).

Placebo Quick Reference: (plas-e-bo) A dummy pill or medicine.

Advanced Reference: Any medicine given to placate rather than cure the patient.

Placenta Quick Reference: (plas-enter) Organ by which the unborn infant receives nourishment from the mother.

Advanced Reference: The placenta is normally firmly attached to the lining of the uterus. Dissolved oxygen and nutrients diffuse from the mother's blood to the placenta and carbon dioxide and other waste travel in the opposite direction.

Plasma Quick Reference: The fluid part of the blood.

Advanced Reference: The fluid in which blood cells are suspended or the fluid left after blood has clotted and is called serum (i.e. obtained by

Pneumoperitoneum defibrinating plasma). Total blood volume is comprised of 55% fluid and 45% cells.

Plasma expander Quick Reference: IV fluid which increases plasma volume.

Advanced Reference: Plasma expanders, e.g. (colloids) increase plasma volume via osmosis, i.e. drawing fluid from the extracellular and intracellular spaces. Hypertonic solutions have similar but shorter-acting effect. Also referred to as volume expanders.

Plasty Quick Reference: Suffix indicating restorative or reconstructive procedures.

Advanced Reference: Most common would be pyeloroplasty and arthroplasty.

Platelets Quick Reference: Cells that play a part in blood clotting.

Advanced Reference: Thrombocytes or platelets are produced in the bone marrow. An important constituent of blood coagulation. They adhere to the walls of injured vessels and help seal them off.

Plenum Quick Reference: Operating theatre ventilation system.

Advanced Reference: With the plenum system, positive-pressure air, which has been filtered, humidified and warmed (cooled) is fed in at ceiling level and via downward displacement forces air out of lower vents, allowing for approximately 20-30 air changes per hour.

Pleura Quick Reference: (plur- ra) The membrane covering the lungs.

Advanced Reference: Consists of the parietal pleura, which covers the chest wall and the visceral pleura which covers the lungs. The space between the two membranes contains a fluid (surfactant) which enables the lungs to move freely within the chest.

Plexus Quick Reference: A network of structures.

Advanced Reference: A network of nerves, blood or lymphatic vessels. An example is the brachial plexus which is a system of communicating nerve branches at the root of the neck.

Pneumonectomy Quick Reference: (nu-mon-ect-omee) Surgical removal of the lung.

Advanced Reference: Indicates excision of the whole lung whereas lobec-tomy signifies removal of one lobe of a lung.

Pneumonia Quick Reference: (nu-mone-ia) Inflammation of the lungs.

Advanced Reference: Due to infection by virus or bacteria. Unlike bronchitis which mostly affects the upper air passages, pneumonia occurs further down the respiratory tract.

Pneumoperitoneum Quick Reference: (nu-mo-perit-o-nee-um) Air or gas in the peritoneal cavity.

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