Propagate Quick Reference: To multiply.

Advanced Reference: With regard to animals, plants, etc. To grow (culture) laboratory specimens.

Prophylaxis Quick Reference: (pro-fal-axis) Something done to prevent disease.

Advanced Reference: Any treatment instituted in order to prevent a disease or condition, e.g. patients are sometimes given prophylactic antibiotics and anti-emetics prior to surgery.

Propranolol Quick Reference: Beta-blocker.

Advanced Reference: Brings about a fall in heart rate and cardiac output combined with a decrease in myocardial oxygen consumption. Used to prevent the reoccurrence of heart attack. Available as Inderal.

Prostaglandins Quick Reference: A hormone-type substance produced in numerous parts of the body.

Advanced Reference: It is in fact a group of substances which regulate the actions of other hormones and are involved in many body functions, e.g. inflammation, gastric acid secretion, BP adjustment, clotting, renal elimination and immunity. They increase the contraction of smooth muscle, particularly in the uterus and are used to induce abortion. May also be used to induce labour. Available as synthetic versions.

Prostate Quick Reference: Gland surrounding the neck of the bladder and beginning of the urethra in men.

Advanced Reference: The prostate produces a fluid which forms part of the semen. In later life it is liable to benign enlargement which may obstruct urine flow. If warranted, surgery is required to remove it or reduce the size of the gland.

Prosthesis Quick Reference: Artificial substitute for a body part.

Advanced Reference: Technically involves false teeth, glass eye, false leg, etc. but with reference to theatres usually indicates, e.g. a hip, knee replacement, etc.

Protamine Quick Reference: An antidote for heparin. ry Advanced reference: An antagonist of the anticoagulant heparin, the action of which normally lasts approximately 4-6 h but this time can be speeded up by the administration of protamine. Used regularly during 2 cardiopulmonary bypass, renal dialysis.

§ Protocol Quick Reference: A written plan.

■I Advanced Reference: A plan which specifies the procedures to be folg- lowed, e.g. an examination, research or when providing care. o o> Proximal Quick Reference: Nearest to the centre of the body.

is Advanced Reference: Describes anything which is nearer to a given

S. point of reference. In anatomy, the centre point of the body is taken as the reference point. The opposite being distal.


Pseudomonas Quick Reference: (sude-a-moan-us) Gram-negative bacilli.

Advanced Reference: One type, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, infects wounds, burns, etc. and is found in water traps, humidifiers, etc.

PTFE Quick Reference: Teflon (polytetrafluoroethylene).

Advanced Reference: Substance with non-stick properties developed via space race (National Aeronautics and Space Administration, NASA). IV cannulae can be either coated or made from Teflon. This property helps reduce thrombus formation and can help increase flow rate.

Pudendal Quick Reference: Nerve that supplies the perineum, vulva and lower vagina.

Advanced Reference: Nerve that can be damaged by a peroneal post when patient is positioned for hip/femur surgery on orthopaedic table, etc. Pudendal nerve block, used in obstetrics for vaginal/forceps delivery, episiotomy, etc.

Pulseless electrical activity Quick Reference: Condition related to advanced cardiac life support (ACLS).

Advanced Reference: Condition where there is an absence of a pulse in conjunction with a relatively normal looking ECG. Common causes are hypovolaemia, hypoxia, hypothermia, etc.

Purse-string Quick Reference: Type of suture used to close an opening.

Advanced Reference: A continuous circular suture placed around an opening and can cause it to close. As with appendix removal, or the urinary bladder when inserting a drainage tube.

Pus Quick Reference: Yellowish fluid that is a by-product of inflammation/infection.

Advanced Reference: Tissue fluid containing dead white cells, bacteria and broken-down tissues. Has a distinctive smell but this is dependent on the type of bacteria involved.

Putrefaction Quick Reference: The breaking down of tissue by bacteria.

Advanced Reference: Refers to the changes that take place in bodies of animals and plants after death. Almost entirely due to bacterial action which reduces living matter to carbonic acid gas, ammonia, etc. Usually accompanied by offensive odour due to gases produced.

Putti-Platt operation Quick Reference: Orthopaedic procedure for shoulder dislocation.

Advanced Reference: The procedure is performed to prevent recurrent

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