Dictionary Definitions

Anesthetic
an•es•thet•ic | “an-uh-sthe-tick”
An agent that temporarily depresses neuronal function, effectively numbing the area and producing a loss of sensation.
Nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas, gives patients an exhilarating feeling while serving as an anesthetic to help reduce pain.
Antibiotics
an•ti•bi•ot•ics | “an-ty-by-ot-icks”
A substance produced or derived from certain fungi, bacteria, or other organisms that can destroy infections and disease.
Doctors prescribed antibiotics to treat his ear infection.
Artery
ar•ter•y | “ar-teh-ree”
A part of the circulatory system made up of branching vessels moving blood from various parts of the body from the heart.
One of the main arteries can be found in the neck.
Blood Transfusion
An injection of blood from one person or animal into the bloodstream of another.
The blood bank is asking for donations because numerous people require blood transfusions after a major car accident.
Blood type
The specific category of blood each individual has, consisting of four major types; O, A, B, and AB. These types are based on the presence or absence of specific antigens in red blood cells.
Once doctors locate a heart donor, it is matched with candidates based on their blood type, body size and medical condition.
Bloodstream
The blood flowing through the circulatory system in the living body.
IV medication goes straight into the patient’s bloodstream.
Cannula
cann•u•la | “can-yah-luh”
A thin plastic tube used for insertion into the body to draw off fluid or to introduce medication.
The cannula goes into the vein to deliver medication.
Catheter
cath•e•ter | “kath-ih-terr”
A thin tube inserted into the body for diagnostic or therapeutic purposes.
The fluids flow from the container, through the catheter and into the patient.
Central Line Associated Bloodstream Infection (CLABSI)
An infection that occurs when bacteria or viruses enter the bloodstream through the central line.
The patient suffering from CLABSI has a fever and soreness around the central line.
Central Venous Catheter
cen•tral  ve•nous  cath•e•ter | “sen-trull vee-nuss kath-ih-ter”
A catheter placed into a vein in the neck, chest or groin for an extended period of time.
The dialysis patient required the use of a central venous catheter.
Chemotherapy
chem•o•ther•a•py | “kee-mo-ther-uh-pee”
A treatment that uses chemicals with toxic effects upon the illness-producing microorganisms or that selectively target cancerous tissue.
The doctors prescribed chemotherapy to treat the cancerous cells in her lung.
Dehydration
de•hy•dra•tion | “dee-hi-dray-shun”
An abnormal loss of water from the body, especially from illness or physical exertion.
Heat and humidity combined with physical exertion are a major trigger of dehydration.
Extravasation
Ex•tra•va•sa•tion | “ik-strav-uh-zay-shun”
The accidental infiltration of a vesicant or chemotherapeutic drug into the surrounding IV site.
The extravasation caused pain and infection due to the ill effects of the vesicant.
Flushing
The act of clearing intravenous lines of any medicine or perishable liquids to keep the lines and entry area clean and sterile.
The nurse flushed the IV with saline after the medication was delivered into the patient.
Infection
in•fec•tion | “in-feck-shun”
An invasion of the body by pathogenic microorganisms that may cause harm to a bodily part or tissue.
The patient needs an injection of antibiotics to fight off the infection.
Infiltration
In•fil•tra•tion | “in-fill-tray-shun”
The delivery of fluid and/or medication outside the vein and into the surrounding soft tissue.
The patient suffered an infiltration when the tip of the catheter slipped out of their vein.
Intravenous
in•tra•ve•nous | “in-truh-vee-nuss”
Administered by entering a vein.
The doctor prescribed an intravenous medication.
Intravenous (IV) therapy
in•tra•ve•nous  ther•a•py | “in-truh-vee-nuss  ther-uh-pee”
The delivery of liquid substances directly into the vein to treat a bodily disorder.
Intravenous (IV)  therapy was used to treat dehydration.
IV (or infusion) pump
A device that infuses fluids, medication or nutrients into a patient’s circulatory system.
The nurse uses an IV (or infusion) pump to administer medication directly into the patient’s vein.
Locking
The act of placing an intravenous portal that’s left in the vein of a patient’s arm and used regularly for fluid of medical infusions.
A long-term patient’s nurse may use a saline lock to allow easier, continuous access to the peripheral vein.
Medical Device
med•i•cal  de•vice | “med-ih-kull  duh-vhys”
An instrument or machine used to prevent, diagnose or treat an illness or disease, or for detecting, measuring, correcting or modifying bodily functions.
The patients may need a medical device to diagnose their ailment.
Midline Catheter
Mid•line  cath•e•ter | “mid-lyne kath-ih-ter”
A catheter placed into the upper arm above the elbow and below the neck for more than five days, but less than a month.
The patient with hard to reach veins needed a midline catheter.
Nutrients
nu•tri•ent | “nu-tree-unts”
A substance that acts as a source of nourishment, particularly an ingredient in food.
When digesting food moves through the small intestines, it mixes with chemical and breaks down allowing the body to absorb the nutrients.
Peripheral Venous Catheter (Peripherally Inserted Venous Catheter- PIV)
per•iph•er•al  ve•nous  cath•e•ter | “puh-riff-er-ull  vee-nuss  kath-ih-ter”
Also known as a Standard Line, the most common intravenous access method where the line is placed in the arms, hands, legs or feet.
Peripheral intravenous catheters deliver medications, hydration fluids, blood products and nutritional supplements to emergency room patients.
Saline
Sa•line | “say-leen”
A sterile solution of sodium chloride used to dilute medications for intravenous therapy or to maintain adequate hydration.
The patient was given saline to treat their dehydration.
Vascular Access Devices (VADs)
A device that’s inserted into the veins for diagnostic or therapeutic reasons, such as blood sampling, central venous pressure readings, and blood transfusions.
The nurse inserted a vascular access device into the patient to deliver medication into their system.
Vein
vein | “vayn”
A part of the circulatory system made up of branching vessels moving blood from various parts of the body to the heart.
The caregiver inserted the needle into the patient’s vein.
Vesicant drug
Ves•i•cant | “vess-ih-kent”
An agent that causes destruction of tissue.
The introduction of vesicant medication resulted in blisters forming on the patient’s skin.
Vitamins
vi•ta•mins |“vy-tuh-mins”
A group of organic substances found in natural food, beverages, or synthetically produced items that are essential to normal bodily functions.
A healthy diet consists of carbs, proteins, fats, minerals, and vitamins.
Vitamin IV therapy
A blend of vitamins and minerals infused into the body via catheter.
Vitamin IV Therapy can help patients who lack essential nutrients due to a diet rich in processed foods.
Ultrasound
A device that uses ultrasonic waves to treat ailments or to provide an image of internal structures.
The nurse used an ultrasound for assistance viewing the patient’s veins when placing a peripheral venous catheter.