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Neurosciences Dictionary

AV fistula. An abnormal connection between an artery and a vein

AVM or arteriovenous malformation. An abnormal connection between the arteries and veins in the brain that usually forms before birth

Acoustic neuroma. A slow-growing tumor of the nerve connecting the ear and brain

Acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM.) A brief, intense attack of inflammation in the brain and spinal cord that damages myelin - the protective covering of nerve fibers

Amygdalectomy. An operation that removes a part of the brain called the amygdala

Angiogram. A test used to document the flow of blood within an artery

Angioplasty. A minimally invasive procedure for widening narrowed arteries

Aneurysm. An abnormal ballooning in the wall of an artery in the brain

Anoxia. Lack of sufficient oxygen

CARF-accredited. Having been found by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) to meet standards of excellence for care.

Carotid artery. The artery that supplies the head and neck with blood.

Carpal tunnel syndrome. A condition that is caused by pressure on the median nerve in the wrist, which controls feeling and movement to parts of the hand

Catheter. A thin that is guided through blood vessels that enables specialists to perform various minimally invasive procedures inside the brain and spinal cord

Cerebral vasospasm. Narrowing or constriction of an artery in the brain that reduces its blood flow

Cerebrovascular disease. Conditions involving the blood vessels supplying the brain

Chondrosarcoma. A common form of bone cancer

Chordoma. A rare tumor that grows in the spine or at the base of the skull

Craniofacial malignancies. Cancerous tumors affecting the skull and face

Decompressive laminectomy. An operation that removes parts of vertebrae that cause narrowing of the spinal canal and pressure on the spinal cord.

eICU. An intensive care unit that provides continuous monitoring of patients to allow immediate response to any changes in their condition

EEG. Electroencephalography, a test that measures and records electrical activity in the brain from sensors on the scalp

EMG. Electromyography, a test that measures and records electrical activity in muscles

Embolization. Dissolving, removing or destroying a blood clot to clear a blood vessel

Encephalitis. Irritation and swelling (inflammation) of the brain

Epistaxis. Severe bleeding from the nostrils

Extracranial. Outside the skull

Fistula. An abnormal connection between vessels or organs

Foraminotomy. An operation that widens the space where spinal nerve roots leave the spinal canal

Glomus tumor. A tumor that develops on the temporal bone of the skull

Glue/Onyx Obliteration. A noninvasive procedure for treating aneurysms and AVM that seals the ballooned area of the blood vessel with glue or other fillers

Guillain-Barre syndrome. A disease in which the body's immune systems attacks the nervous system and most often causes damage to the nerve's protective covering

Hematoma. A pooling of blood around a blood vessel that occurs when the vessel is damaged or bursts

Hemorrhage. Bleeding or leakage of blood from a blood vessel

Hippocampectomy. An operation to remove all or part of the brain called the hippocampus

Hypoxic Ischemic Brain Damage. Damage to brain cells caused by lack of sufficient oxygen

Intensivist. A physician specializing in the care of critically ill patients, usually in an intensive care unit

Intra-arterial clot retrieval. A minimally invasive procedure that uses a catheter to deliver a tiny mechanical device used to retrieve blood clots from arteries

Intracranial. Inside the skull

Intracranial bleeds. Bleeding within the brain. Examples based on location are subdural hematoma (SDH), intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH), subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) and epidural hematoma (EDH.)

Intravenous and intra-arterial thrombolysis. Dissolving of a blood clot by introducing clot-dissolving drugs into a vein or artery

Interspace. The space between vertebrae

Keyhole forminatomy. A minimally invasive procedure that creates a hole in a vertebrae to allow additional space for nerves to pass through

Kyphoplasty. A minimally invasive procedure in which the proper height of vertebrae is restored by injecting bone cement or a small balloon

L1 to L-5. Identification of the lumbar vertebrae that are located between the thoracic vertebrae and the sacral vertebrae in the spinal column

Laminotomy. An operation that removes the lamina, a part of the vertebrae

Lesion. An area of tissue damaged by injury or disease

Lumbar interbody fusion. An operation that removes the disc between two lumbar vertebrae and fuses them together

Ménière disease. A condition that can cause vertigo, ringing in the ears and hearing loss

Meningioma. A tumor that develops from the meninges, the lining of the brain

Microdiscectomy. A new minimally invasive technique used to remove protruding portions of a herniated disc

Neuralgia is pain that follows the path of a nerve

Physical medicine and rehabilitation. A medical specialty that focuses on improving and restoring function and quality of life for patients who have injuries, diseases or disabilities. Also known as PM&R or physiatry

Radiosurgery, Stereoetactic Radiosurgery. A minimally invasive procedure that uses precisely guided radiation to pinpoint and destroy tumors.

S-1 to S-5. Identification of the five vertebrae in the lowest portion of the spinal column

Schwannoma. A noncancerous tumor that develops on the covering of cranial nerves

Scoliosis. Abnormal curvature of the spine

Spinal stenosis. Narrowing of the spinal column that reduces space required for the spinal cord

Stenting. A minimally invasive procedure in which a small tube is placed within a blood vessel to strengthen or repair it

Stroke. The interruption of the blood supply to any part of the brain

Subdural hematoma. A condition in which blood collects on the surface of the brain as the result of traumatic head injury

Synovial cyst. A fluid-filled sac that froms as a result of degeneration of the spine

Syringomyelia. Damage to the spinal cord from the formation of cysts

T-1 to T-12. Identification of the thoracic vertebrae, the ones starting closest to the skull and moving down the back

tPA. Tissue plasminogen activator, a common drug used to break up blood clots

Thrombosis. Formation of a blood clot inside a blood vessel

Thrombolysis. Dissolving, removal or destruction of a blood clot blocking a blood vessel

Traumatic compression fractures. Breakages of the vertebrae due to injury

Vagal nerve stimulation. A procedure that involves sending slight electrical impulses along the vagus nerve to help prevent seizures.

Vagus nerve. The longest of the cranial nerves that extends from the brain to the abdomen

Vertebrae. Bones of the spinal column

Vertebral Compression Fractures (VCF.) Fractures of the vertebrae caused by trauma to the spine

Vertebrectomy. An operation to extend the height of vertebrae

Vertebrobasilar artery. A major artery that supplies the brain

Vertebroplasty. A minimally invasive procedure in which acrylic cement in injected into a damaged vertebrae to repair it


Healing Arts Pavilion
Imaging Centers
Immediate Care New Lenox
Immediate Care Plainfield
Physical Therapy Services
Sleep Disorder Center
Wound Care Center

Medical Services

Alliance Health
Balloon Sinuplasty
Behavioral Health
Cancer Services
Cardiovascular and Heart Care
Children's Emergency Department
Clinical Research Trials at PSJMC
Diabetes and Nutrition Education
EICU - enhanced ICU
Emergency Services
Family Birthing Suites
Gastrointestinal Services
Healing Arts Pavilion
Presence Home Care and Hospice
Imaging Services
Interventional Radiology
Long Term Care
Neuroscience Institute
Orthopedic Services
Pediatric Services
Pulmonary Services
Rehabilitation - Inpatient
Rehabilitation - Outpatient
Senior Spirit
Sleep Disorder Center
Support Groups
Weight Loss Surgery
Women and Children Services
Wound Care Center

Patient & Visitor Information

Accepted Insurance Providers
Advance Directives
Area Information
Cafeteria Menu/Hours
Contact Information
Financial Assistance
Financial Assistance and Clearance
Gift Shop
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Maps & Directions
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Medical Library
MRSA Prevention
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Parking Information
Patient Email
Patient Family Advisory Committee
Patient Health Portals
Patient Privacy Overview
Patient Questions & Concerns
Patient Stories
Room Service Dining
Spiritual Care
Visiting Hours

About Us

Map of 1st Floor
2010 Annual Report
Board of Directors
Commitment to our Communities
Community Outreach
Community Partners
Contact Information
Conference Center Facilities
Flu Information
Hospital Report Card Act
Mission Vision and Values
Patient Stories
Physicians Only
Quality Reports
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