Hereditary Diseases - Key Words

Amyloidosis - is a condition in which waxy, starch-like, glycoprotein (amyloid) accumulates in tissues and organs, impairing their function.

Almost all organs can be affected, including the intestine and the kidney. Amyloid deposits in the kidney can lead to excessive protein loss in the urine and eventual kidney failure.

Effusion - an outpouring or escape of fluid into a part or tissue. Ascites (also called hydroperitonia) is the abnormal build up of effused fluid in the abdomen.

Embolism - the obstruction of the blood vessel by a foreign substance or a blood clot blocking the vessel. Something travels through the bloodstream, lodges in a vessel and plugs it.

Blood clots are the most common cause of embolism. A pulmonary embolus is a blood clot that has been carried through the blood into the pulmonary artery (the main blood vessel from the heart to the lung), or one of its branches, plugging that vessel. The term "embolus" refers to the plug itself obstructing the blood vessel while "embolism" refers to the process by which this happens.

Enteric - of/or relating to the small intestine.

Enteritis - is the inflammation of the small intestine.

Eosinophil - is a type of white blood cell. The numbers of Eosinophils in blood often rise when there is an allergic reaction in progress. Eosinophilia is the formation and accumulation of an abnormally large number of eosinophils in the blood. Eosinopenia is a deficiency of eosinophilic cells in the blood.

Granulomatous - a granuloma is one of a number of forms of localised nodular inflammation found in tissues.

Granulomatous Enteritis - (Crohn's Disease in humans) is a chronic inflammatory disorder, primarily involving the small intestine only. In mild form, it causes small, scattered shallow crater-like areas (erosions) called apthous ulcers in the inner surface of the bowel. In more serious cases, deeper and larger ulcers can develop, causing scarring, stiffness and possibly narrowing of the bowel, sometimes leading to obstruction.

Granulomatous Peritonitis - is a severe affect of Granulomatous enteritis in which deep ulcers puncture holes in the bowel wall, leading to infection in the abdominal cavity (peritonitis) and in adjacent organs.

Hypoproteinemia - low blood protein in the blood. Sometime resulting in oedema and fluid accumulation.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)- the term used to describe a group of chronic intestinal diseases characterised by inflammation of the bowel - the large or small intestine. (Also see Lymphocytic/Plasmacytic Enteritis and Lymphangiectasia below).

Isosthenuria - the excretion of urine with fixed specific gravity. It may occur in terminal renal disease when the specific gravity reaches that of the glomerular filtrate, 1.010.

Lipogranulomatosis - is a condition of faulty lipid (fat) metabolism in which nodules of lipoid matter are deposited in the skin and mucosa, causing granulomatous reactions.

Lymph - an almost colourless fluid that travels through vessels called lymphatics in the lymphatic system and carries cells that help fight infection and disease. Lymphangitis involves the lymph vessels/channels, with inflammation of the channel and resultant pain and systemic and localised symptoms.

Lymphangiectasia - is obstruction and dilation of the lymphatic vessels in the digestive system. It is a congenital or acquired disorder of the lymphatic system resulting in fat and protein malabsorption and a protein losing enteropathy. It is another form of IBD that often underlies PLE in the SCWT.

Lymphocyte - a small white blood cell (leukocyte) that plays a large role in defending the body against disease.

Lymphocytic-plasmacytic enteritis - is a form of Inflammatory Bowel Disease. This form of IBD is one of the diseases that can develop into PLE.

Although the exact cause is unknown, one favoured by most academicians is that this disease is an immune-mediated hypersensitivity to some enteric bacteria and dietary components. It is characterised by the presence of inflammation of the cells lining the intestine.

Maelena (Melena) - a darkening of the faeces by blood pigments. Typically the faeces have a black colour with a red tinge at the edges and are soft and almost slimy.

Malabsorption - is poor intestinal absorption of nutrients. This is caused by any blockage of properly digested nutrients. It may be a symptom of a number of diseases which manifest as PLE, or PLE and PLN.

Maldigestion - indicates the system is not properly breaking down nutrients. This is caused by a lack of Pancreatic enzyme. This is not generally a factor of either PLE or PLN.

This disorder is directly related to the excessive leakage of plasma proteins into the lumen of the gastrointestinal tract. The liver and other cleansing systems are unable to compensate for the loss. Mechanisms for gastrointestinal protein loss include lymphatic obstruction, mucosal disease with erosions, or ulcerations.

Mesenchyme - is the meshwork of embryonic connective tissue in the mesoderm, from which are formed the muscular and connective tissues of the body and also the blood vessels and lymph vessels.

Nephron - one of a million tiny filtering units in each kidney. Each nephron is made up of both glomerulus and a fluid collecting tubule that processes extra water and wastes.

Nephropathy - is a medical word for kidney disease. Nephropathy can be applied to any disease of the kidney.

Pancreas - the organ that makes pancreatic juices and hormones, including insulin. Pancreatic juices, also called enzymes, help digest food in the small intestine. Insulin controls the amount of sugar in the blood. Both enzymes and hormones are needed to keep the body working correctly. Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas.

Proteinuria - large amounts of protein in the urine. Some protein is normal in the urine. Too much means protein is leaking through the kidney, most often through the glomeruli. The main protein in human blood and the key to the regulation of the osmotic pressure of blood is albumin. Proteinuria is synonymous with albuminuria.

Thrombus - a clot in a blood vessel or the heart. The formation, development or presence of a thrombus is called Thrombosis.

Titre - tells if an animal has had an immune response to the material (antigen) in the vaccine and that it has made antibodies (which we measure in the titre). Immunologists have equated the presence of certain levels of titre to immunity.

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