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Macrophage - A phagocytic tissue cell of the reticuloendothelial system that may be fixed or freely motile, is derived from a monocyte, and functions in the protection of the body against infection and noxious substances -- called also histiocyte.

macrophages - enlarged monocytes (white blood cells) that engulf microbes and cellular debris.

macroscopic - adjective, Greek makros = large, and skopein = to examine; hence, large enough to be seen with the naked eye, e.g., pertaining to gross anatomy.

macula - Latin = spot (cf. immaculate - spotless); adjective - macular.

magna - Latin = great.

major histocompatibility complex (MHC) - (also called human leukocyte antigens, HLAs) is the mechanism by which the immune system is able to differentiate between self and nonself cells.

Malaise - A vague feeling of bodily discomfort.

male reproductive system - consists of the scrotum, testes, epidiymis, ductus deferens, ejaculatory ducts, urethra, spermatic cord, accessory sex glands, and the penis.

malleolus - diminutive of Latin malleus = hammer, adjective - malleolar.

malleus - Latin = a hammer.

mamma - Latin = breast; adjective - mammary.

mammary glands - sweat glands on a woman that are specialized for the production of milk.

mammilla - diminutive of mamma; adjective - mammillary.

Mammography - Mammography is a procedure that involves taking x-rays of the breasts to detect breast cysts or tumors, especially those that cannot be felt (palpable) by the fingers during a physical examination. A mammogram is the photographic result. The procedure does not prevent breast cancer; it is used to detect cancer early when it is more likely to be successfully treated.

mandible - Latin mandere = to chew; hence, the movable lower jaw; adjective - mandibular.

Mandibulo- - (L. mandere, to chew). Pertaining to a muscle arising from the mandible.

manubrium - Latin = handle; adjective - manubrial.

Manus - (L. manus, hand). Pertaining to the muscles of the hand.

Margin - Edge of the tissue removed during surgery. A negative surgical margin is usually a sign that no cancer was left behind near the area it was removed from. A positive surgical margin indicates that cancer cells are found at the outer edge of the tissue removed and is usually a sign that some cancer remains in the body.

Masseter - (G. maseter, masticator). A large masticatory muscle of the jaw.

Mast cell - Cells that play an important role in the body's allergic response. Mast cells are present in most body tissues, but are particularly numerous in connective tissue, such as the dermis (innermost layer) of skin. In an allergic response, an allergen stimulates the release of antibodies, which attach themselves to mast cells. Following subsequent allergen exposure, the mast cells release substances such as histamine (a chemical responsible for allergic symptoms) into the tissue.

Master Patient Index File - An alphabetized list (either card file or computerized list) maintained for all patients that have been entered into the database

mastication - Latin masticere = to chew.

mastoid - adjective, Greek mastos = breast or teat, and eidos = shape or form.

Mastoideus - (G. mastos, breast + eidos, resemblance). Resembling a mamma or a breast- shaped structure.

Matrix - Ground substance in which things are embedded or that fills a space (as for example the space within the mitochondrion). most common usage is for a loose meshwork within which cells are embedded (e.g. Extracellular matrix), although it may also be used of filters or absorbent material. Latin = a female animal used for breading, womb; refers to ground substance of connective tissue, and nail bed.

matter - anything that takes up space and has mass.

maxilla - Latin = jaw-bone; now used only for the upper jaw; adjective - maxillary.

meatus - Latin = passage; adjective - meatal.

Medial - (L. medialis, middle). Relating to muscle nearer to the median or midsagittal plane. Adjective, Latin medius = middle; hence, nearer the median plane.

median - Latin medianus = in the middle.

Mediastinum - The space in the chest between the pleural sacs of the lungs that contains all the viscera of the chest except the lungs and pleurae; also : this space with its contents.

medius - Latin = middle.

medulla - Latin = marrow; applied to part of an organ deep to its cortex, and to the spinal cord and adjoining part of brain stem, which may have been thought to be the marrow of the vertebral column, adjective - medullary pertains to the medulla of an organ or m

Megakaryocyte - Very large bone marrow cells which release mature blood platelets.

meiosis - a reduction division, producing daughter cells that contain half the genetic information of the parent cell.

Melanocytes - Cells in the epidermis that produce melanin, the pigment found in the skin and eyes.

Melanoma - The most serious, life-threatening form of skin cancer.

Melatonin - A hormone produced by the pineal gland that boosts the immune system and helps people with jet lag or insomnia.

melatonin - a hormone that helps regulate the biological clock (sleep-wake cycles).

membrane - Latin membrana = a thin sheet; adjective - membranous.

meninges - plural of Greek meninx = a membrane; adjective - meningeal.

Meningioma - Common benign brain tumours that arise from the pia-arachnoid cells of the meninges. Meningiomas tend to occur along the superior sagittal sinus, along the sphenoid ridge or in the vicinity of the optic chiasm.

meniscus - Latin menis - a small crescent.

mental - adjective - Latin mentum = chin; or Latin mens = mind.

Mentalis - (L. mentum, chin). Relating to the muscles of the chin, e.g., musculus mentalis.

Mento- - (L. mentum, chin). See Mentalis.

mesencephalon - Greek mesos = middle, and enkephalos = brain; adjective - mesencephalic.

mesenchyme - Greek mesos = middle, and chymos = juice; the embryonic connective tissue of the mesoderm.

Mesentery - The membranes, or one of the membranes (consisting of a fold of the peritoneum and inclosed tissues), which connect the intestines and their appendages with the dorsal wall of the abdominal cavity. The mesentery proper is connected with the jejunum and ilium, the other mesenteries being called mesoccum, mesocolon, mesorectum, etc. Greek mesos = middle, and enteron = intestine; hence, the peritoneal fold which tethers the centrally situated small intestine; adjective - mesenteric.

mesial - adjective - medial, used in dental anatomy.

mesoderm - Greek mesos = middle, and derma = skin; the middle germ layer of the embryo.

mesosalpinx - Greek mesos = middle, and salpinx = tube; hence, the intermediate part of the broad ligament.

Mesothelioma - Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that invades mesothelial cells, which are specialized cells that make up the membranes lining the chest and abdominal cavity. Mesothelium, or the tissue formed by mesothelial cells, helps protect the organs by producing a lubricating fluid that allows the organs to move without irritating nerves.

Metabolism - Metabolism is the uptake and digestion of food, and the disposal of waste products. The breakdown of substances, the formation of new products, or the transferring of energy from one substance to another.

Metacarpo- - (G. meta, after + carpus, wrist). Pertaining to the bones adjacent to the wrist.

metacarpus - Greek meta = after, and karpus = wrist; adjective - metacarpal.

metaphysis - Greek meta = after, and physis = growth; hence, the end of the shaft of a bone alongside the epiphysial or growth cartilage; adjective - metaphysial.

metatarsus - Greek meta = after, and tarsos = ankle; hence, the bones beyond the tarsus, adjective - metatarsal.

metencephalon - Greek meta = beside, behind, or after, and enkephalos = brain; hence the parts of the hindbrain immediately caudal to the fore- and midbrain, namely the pons and cerebellum.

metopic - adjective, Greek metopon = forehead.

microtubules - protein fibers made of the protein tubulin and provide support and mobility for cellular activities found in the spindle apparatus.

micturition - Latin micturare = to desire to pass urine.

minimus - Latin = smallest.

miosis - Greek meiosis = lessening; hence, pupillary constriction; adjective - miotic.

mitochondria - carry out aerobic respiration.

Mitochondrion - Any of various round or long cellular organelles of most eukaryotes that are found outside the nucleus, produce energy for the cell through cellular respiration, and are rich in fats, proteins, and enzymes.

Mitosis - Mitosis is a complex process which allows the cell to give identical copies of its DNA to each of the daughter cells. A process of cell division in which the nucleus is divided so that both daughter cells are genetically identical.

modality - Latin modus = mode; hence, a form of sensation - e.g. touch, pain, sight.

modiolus - Latin a cylindrical borer with a serrated edge; hence, like a screw; the central stem of the bony cochlea.

molar - adjective, Latin mola = mill.

Molecule - The smallest unit of matter of a substance that retains all the physical and chemical properties of that substance, consisting of a single atom or a group of atoms bonded together; e.g., Ne, H2, H2O.

molecules - atoms chemically bound together.

monosaccharide - the simplest kind of carbohydrate consisting of a single sugar molecule.

mons - Latin = mountain; mons pubis, the soft tissue bulge over the female pubes.

Morbidity - A diseased condition or state, the incidence of a disease or of all diseases in a population.

morphology - Greek morphos = form, and logos = word or relation; hence, study of pattern of structure; adjective - morphological.

Motor - Any of various power units that develop energy or impart motion.

motor neurons - transmit impulses from the central nervous system to effectors (muscles or glands).

MRI - A standard abbreviation for M agnetic R esonance I maging.

Mucosa (pl. mucosae) - A moist tissue layer that lines hollow organs (stomach, etc.) and body cavities.

multifidus - Latin multus = much, and findere = to split.

muscle - Latin musculus, diminutive of Greek mus = mouse, the body and head of which represent the main belly of a muscle, and the tail, the tendon.

muscle tissues - consist of skeletal muscle, cardiac muscle, and smooth muscle.

muscular system - consists of skeletal muscles and their associated connective tissues. It does not include cardiac muscle or smooth muscle.

Muscularis Propria - The muscular wall typically made up of two layers of smooth muscle, an inner circular layer and an outer longitudinal layer.

Musculus - (L. mus, mouse). A muscle.

Mycosis - Any disease caused by a fungus.

Mycosis Fungoides - A type of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma that first appears on the skin. Also called cutaneous T-cell lymphoma.

mydriasis - Greek = dilatation of the pupil. /2) or invasive (behavior code

myelencephalon - Greek myelos = marrow (= Latin medulla), and enkephalos = brain; hence the medulla oblongata. See also medulla.

Myelin - A soft, white, and somewhat fatty material that forms a thick myelin sheath about the protoplasmic core of a myelinated nerve fiber. Greek myelos = marrow; hence, white fatty sheath of an axis cylinder; adjective - myelinated.

Myelodysplasia - Myelodysplasia is a diagnosis that includes several subcategories with very different findings and different prognoses.

Myeloid - A collective term for the non-lymphocyte groups of white blood cells. It includes cells from the granulocyte, monocyte, and platelet lineages.

myenteric - Greek mys = muscle, and enteron = intestine, hence, pertaining to the muscle of the gut.

mylohyoid - Greek mylo = molar, and hyoeides = U-shaped.

Myo- - (G. mys, a muscle). Relating to a muscle.

myocardium - Greek mys = muscle, and kardia = heart, adjective - myocardial. Uterine smooth muscle.

myotome - Greek mys = muscle, and tome = a cutting or division; hence, a group of muscles innervated by a single spinal segment.

Mytiformis - (G. mytilos, mussel + forma, shape). Shaped like the shellfish, e.g., musculus mytiformis.