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This medical term glossary provides explanations in plain English of a number of technical terms you may encounter in the process of pursuing a clinical negligence claim.
Sacral - Of or relating to the sacrum.
Sacrodynia - Pain in sacrum.
Sacro-iliac joint - The joint connecting the ilium and the sacrum.
Sacrum - Bone at the base of the spine above the coccyx composed of five fused vertebrae.
Scaphoid - A wrist bone.
Sciatica - Pain and abnormal sensation in sciatic nerve down the back of the leg.
Sclerosis - Higher density bone.
Scoliosis - Spine deformed laterally.
Seizure - A fit.
Self-tapping screw - Screw capable of cutting it’s own thread.
Sequestrum - Dead bone caused by osteomyelitis.
Sesamoid - Bones within tendons, e.g. the kneecap.
Shin splints - Fracture of the tibia caused by physical stress.
Shortening - Reduction in length of a bone.
Sign - The results of a doctors visual inspection.
Silicosis - Lung disease caused by inhalation of silicon dust.
Simple fracture - Fracture without breach of skin.
Sinus - Air-filled cavities in the skull.
Slough - Dead tissue being shed from the body.
Spastic - Excessive muscle spasm.
Spinal cord - Nerve bundle within the vertebral canal.
Splint - Support to prevent movement of a joint or fracture.
Spondylitis - Inflammation of the spine.
Spondylo- - Of or relating to the vertebrae.
Spondylolisthesis - Vertebrae slipping on one another.
Spondylolysis - Deformed vertebrae, usually due to an injury.
Spondylosis - Osteoarthritis of the spine.
Sprain - Partial tearing of a ligament.
Stenosis - Abnormal narrowing of passages such as arteries.
Sternum - Breast bone.
Stockholm workshop scale - A scale for the assessment of Raynaud's phenomenon and hand-arm vibration syndrome.
Sub-dural haematoma - A pooling of blood between the outer membrane of the brain and the inner lining of the skull.
Subluxation - Partial dislocation of a joint.
Sudek's atrophy - A form of reflex sympathetic dystrophy involving the wasting of muscle and osteoporosis (thinning of bones).
Sulci - Folds on the surface of the brain.
Supination - Rotation of forearm.
Supra-condylar fracture - A fractured end of the humerus (upper arm bone) or femur (thigh bone).
Suture - Stitch used during surgery.
Symphysis - A joint with no cavity, minimising movement.
Symphysis pubis - The join between the two halves of the pelvis.
Symptom - Sensory perception of the patient.
Syndesmosis - A joint where the opposing surfaces are connected by a ligament
Syndrome - A collection of symptoms and signs which indicates a conclusion.
Synovial effusion - Abnormally large amount of fluid generated in joint cavity.
Synovitis - Inflammation of the joint lining.
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