-ECTOMY
ECZEMA
For example, mammary duct ectasia is
abnormal widening of the ducts that
carry secretions from the breast tissue
to the nipple.
-ectomy
A suffix that denotes surgical
removal. For example, tonsillectomy is
surgical removal of the tonsils.
ectoparasite
A
parasite
that lives in or
on its host's skin and derives nourish-
ment from the skin or by sucking the
host's blood. Various
lice
,
ticks
,
mites
,
and some types of
fungi
are occasional
ectoparasites of humans.
ectopic
A term used to describe a body
structure that occurs in an abnormal
location or position, or a body function
that occurs at an abnormal time.
ectopic heartbeat
A contraction of the
heart muscle that is out of normal tim-
ing. An ectopic
heartbeat
occurs shortly
after a normal beat and is followed by a
longer than usual interval before the
next one.
Ectopic beats can occur in a heart that
is otherwise normal and may cause no
symptoms. Multiple ectopic beats can
cause
palpitations.
After a
myocardial
infarction,
multiple ectopic beats are a
sign of damaged heart muscle. Multiple
ectopic beats may lead to ventricular
fibrillation,
a rapid uncoordinated heart-
beat that may be fatal.
Multiple ectopic beats that are caus-
ing palpitations, or that occur after a
myocardial infarction, are often treated
with an
antiarrhythmic drug
. (See also
arrhythmia, cardiac.)
ectopic pregnancy
A
pregnancy
that
develops outside the
uterus
, most com-
monly in the
fallopian tube,
but some-
times in the
ovary
or in the abdominal
cavity or
cervix
. As the pregnancy devel-
ops, it may damage surrounding tissue,
causing
serious
bleeding,
which
is
potentially life-threatening and requires
emergency treatment.
Ectopic pregnancy is more common in
women who have had previous pelvic
infections (see
pelvic inflammatory dis-
ease
) and with some types of
IUD
and
progestogen-only
oral contraceptives
.
Most ectopic pregnancies are discov-
ered in the first 2 months, often before
the woman realizes she is pregnant.
Symptoms usually include severe pain
in the lower abdomen and vaginal
bleeding. Internal bleeding may cause
symptoms of
shock
, such as
pallor
,
sweating, and faintness.
Diagnosis is made by a transvaginal
ultrasound
examination and can be con-
firmed by ectopic
laparoscopy
. If the
diagnosis is made early, medical treat-
ment using the drug
methotrexate
may
be considered. In most cases, surgery,
usually
minimally invasive surgery,
to
remove the pregnancy is carried out. If
blood loss is severe,
blood transfusions
are needed. An affected fallopian tube
is removed if it cannot be repaired.
ECTOPIC PREGNANCY
ectropion
A turning outwards of the
eyelid
so that the inner surface is ex-
posed. Ectropion is most common in
elderly people, in whom it usually
affects the lower lid and is due to weak-
ness of the muscle surrounding the eye.
The condition may also be caused by
the contraction of scar tissue in the skin
near either lid. Ectropion often follows
facial palsy
, which causes paralysis of
the muscles around the eye. Even slight
ectropion interferes with the normal
drainage of tears, which may lead to
conjunctivitis
. Surgery to tighten the lid
may be needed.
eczema
An inflammation of the skin,
usually causing itching and sometimes
scaling or blisters. There are several dif-
ferent types of eczema; some forms are
known as
dermatitis
.
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