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Glossary E

Posted Jun 02 2009 4:41pm


The extent to which an intervention does people more good than harm under general or routine conditions.
The extent to which an intervention improves the outcome for people under ideal circumstances. Testing efficacy means finding out whether something is capable of causing an effect at all.
Efferent nerves
Nerve fibers that carry impulses away from the brain and spinal cord (central nervous system), which cause a muscle or gland to contract, or which modify or inhibit its contraction.
Chemicals that break down into ions (atoms) in the body's fluids and are essential to regulating many body functions.
A thin, flexible tube with a light and a lens on the end used to look into the esophagus, stomach, duodenum, small intestine, colon, or rectum.
Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)
A procedure that uses an endoscope to diagnose or treat a condition. There are many types of endoscopy; examples include colonoscopy, sigmoidoscopy, gastroscopy, enteroscopy, and esophogealgastroduodenoscopy (EGD).
Enteral nutrition
Food provided through a tube placed in the nose, stomach, or small intestine.
Enteric nervous system (ENS)
Autonomic nervous system within the walls of the digestive tract. The ENS regulates digestion and the muscle contractions that eliminate solid waste.
An irritation of the small intestine.
The descent of loops of small intestine into the pelvis, that bulge into the vagina during straining. An enterocele may cause pain and/or obstructed defecation.
Inflammation of the intestines
Examination of the inside of the small intestine using an endoscope.
Eosinophilic gastroenteritis
A rare disease characterized by food-related reactions, infiltration of certain white blood cells (eosinophils) in the GI tract, and an increase in the number of eosinophils in the blood.
The study of the distribution of health-related states or events in specified populations and the application of this study to the control of health problems.
The inner and outer tissue covering digestive tract organs.
ERCP (endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography)
A procedure for the examination or treatment of the bile ducts (biliary tree) and pancreatic ducts that combines the use of x-rays and an endoscope. Used to diagnose and manage problems of the liver, gallbladder, bile ducts, and pancreas such as gallstones and their complications, pancreatic and biliary cancers, pancreatitis and its complications, and pancreaticobiliary pain. The procedure carries a risk of serious complications, requires conscious sedation of the patient, and is performed by gastroenterologists or other physicians with special training. (The National Institutes of Health (NIH) held a State-of-the-Science Conference on ERCP for diagnosis and therapy on January 14-16, 2002.)
An irritation of the esophagus, usually caused by acid that flows up from the stomach.
The organ that connects the mouth to the stomach.
Esophogealgastroduodenoscopy (EGD)
Examination of the inside of the esophagus, stomach, and duodenum using an endoscope. (Also called Gastroscopy or Upper Endoscopy)
Etiologic mechanisms
The processes that cause or contribute to the cause of diseases or conditions.
Findings based on the use of current best evidence from scientific and medical research.
Evidence-based medicine
The conscientious, explicit and judicious use of the current best evidence from clinical care research in making decisions about the care of individual patients
Occurring outside the intestines.
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