First Aid Glossary
Health / First Aid Glossary
Abduction: Moving a limb away from the body.
Abrasion: A superficial wound in which the topmost layers of the skin are scraped off
Acute: A temporary condition that may be severe.
Acute Myocardial Infarction: Definition of a heart attack. Also known as an acute myocardial infarction.
Adduction: Moving a limb toward the body.
Advanced Life Support: A level of care provided by prehospital emergency medical services. Advanced life support consists of invasive life-saving procedures including the placement of advanced airway adjuncts, int . . . View Full Definition
Agonal Respirations: Irregular, gasping breaths often seen during cardiac arrest. In most cases, rescuers will see victims take these gasping breaths no more than 10 to 12 times per minute: that's one every five . . . View Full Definition
Air Ambulance: Air ambulances are used when patients need to be transported over long distances more quickly than ground ambulances can accomplish, or when the use of ground ambulance is impossible. Air am . . . View Full Definition
Airway: The passages which transfer air from the outside environment to the lungs: the tracha, bronchi, bronchioles and alveoli
Ambulance: A vehicle used to transport sick or injured people with medical needs. A prehospital emergency medical services provider tends to the sick or injured occupant during transportation. Ambulanc . . . View Full Definition
Ammonium Nitrate: The active chemical in cold packs.
Anaphylactic Shock: Anaphylaxis resulting in a collapse of the circulatory system and a dangerous decrease in blood pressure. Anaphylactic shock is a life-threatening reaction that requires immediate treatment.
Anaphylaxis: Severe, often life threatening, generalized allergic reaction. Unlike a typical allergic reaction, anaphylaxis affects more than one body system.
Anatomical Position: A basic position that all anatomical references assume. The subject is standing, looking straight ahead with arms hanging down at both sides and palms facing forward. In most cases, the toes . . . View Full Definition
Anatomy: The study of the structure of the body.
Anterior: Front of the body.
Aphasia: Inability to create or understand speech. Aphasia is a disorder of the brain's speech center rather than the anatomical structures that are used to create speech (mouth and vocal cords) or u . . . View Full Definition
Apnea: From the Greek a- (no or none) and -pnea (breathing or air), meaning the absense of breathing. In many cases, victims of apnea are also suffering from cardiac arrest, and should receive CPR. . . . View Full Definition
Arachnoid Layer: The arachnoid layer acts as a cushion between the dura mater and the pia mater. Bleeding in the arachnoid layer is known as a subdural hematoma, a potentially life-threatening condition.
Artery: A blood vessel carrying blood away from the heart: contains oxygen-rich, high-pressure blood in the systemic cardiorespiratory system
Arthritis: Inflammation of joints.
Asthma: Asthma is a medical condition that causes narrowing of the small airways in the lungs. Typically, asthma patients develop wheezing and have increased mucous production in their lungs. Asthma . . . View Full Definition
Avulsion: Soft tissue injury where a flap of tissue has been removed or is barely attached. Avulsion also may refer to an injury of the bone where a tendon or ligament has been ripped away from its in . . . View Full Definition
Basic Life Support: A level of medical care provided by prehospital emergency medical services. Basic life support consists of essential non-invasive life-saving procedures, such as CPR, bleeding control, splin . . . View Full Definition
Behind-The-Counter Drugs: Behind-the-counter medications are not exactly over-the-counter or prescription medications.