Health A-Z

Vacuum-assisted delivery

Clinical Definition Vacuum-assisted delivery is a type of obstetrical intervention used to deliver a fetus vaginally. A suction device, referred to as a vacuum, is attached to the skull to assist with vaginal delivery. A vacuum-assisted delivery may be implemented in cases of fetal distress in order to deliver the baby quickly. Possible complications of


Clinical Definition Vaginitis is a condition affecting the vagina brought on by bacteria, yeast or viruses that cause infection or inflammation. Symptoms vary depending on the cause of the infection. In Our Own Words Vaginitis is an infection or inflammation of the vagina. Often there is a change in the balance of the microscopic flora

Valley Fever

Clinical Definition Valley fever is a pulmonary infection that develops due to inhalation of spores from the fungus Coccidioides immitis. Native to Mexico and parts of the southwestern United States, this fungus makes spores which are found in the soil of low rainfall areas. The spores become lodged in the alveoli, which leads to inflammation

Valve Disease

Clinical Definition Valve disease, or valvular heart disease, occurs when the cardiac valves (mitral, tricuspid, aortic, pulmonic) do not function correctly, either due to valvular stenosis or valvular insufficiency. Valvular disease can be congenital or acquired. Cardiovascular imaging can evaluate the severity and type of valvular disease. Medication may help, or valvular surgery can repair


Clinical Definition Varicella is an infectious childhood disease caused by the varicella-zoster virus, also known as the human herpes virus-3, characterized by an itchy rash that can last up to 10 days. In Our Own Words Chickenpox is the common name for varicella, which is caused by a strain of herpes known as the varicella-zoster

Varicose Veins

Clinical Definition Varicose veins are abnormal, dilated blood vessels caused by a weakening in the vessel wall or valve. They most often appear on the legs and in the pelvic areas as blue or purple vein clusters and are more common in women. In Our Own Words Varicose veins are a common condition that occur


Clinical Definition A vasodilator is a pharmacological agent that causes relaxation of the smooth muscle cells within the walls of the vessels. The relaxation results in dilation of the blood vessels. Vasodilators allow an increase in circulation and are used to treat conditions like hypertension. In Our Own Words Some types of medical conditions cause

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