TABES DORSALIS
TARDIVE DYSKINESIA
T
tabes dorsalis A rare complication of
untreated
syphilis
that appears years after
infection. The condition causes abnor-
malities
of sensation,
sharp pains,
incoordination, and incontinence.
tachycardia An adult heart rate of over
100 beats per minute. The average heart
rate is 72-78 beats per minute. Tachy-
cardia occurs in healthy people during
exercise. At rest, it may be due to
fever,
anxiety, hyperthyroidism, coronary artery
disease,
high
caffeine
intake, or treatment
involving
anticholinergic
or
diuretic drugs.
There are various types of tachycardia,
which originate in different areas of the
heart; the types include
atrial fibrillation,
sinus tachycardia, supraventricular tachy-
cardia
, and
ventricular tachycardia
.
tachypnoea An abnormally fast rate of
breathing, which may be caused by exer-
cise, anxiety, or lung or cardiac disorders.
T'ai chi A Chinese exercise system based
on a series of over
100
postures between
which slow, continuous movements are
made. The aim is to exercise the muscles
and integrate mind and body.
talipes A
birth defect
(commonly called
club-foot) in which the foot is twisted
out of shape or position. The cause may
be pressure on the feet from the mother's
uterus, or a genetic factor. The most
common form is an equinovarus defor-
mity, in which the heel turns inwards
and the rest of the foot bends down and
inwards.
It is
treated
by
repeated
manipulation of the foot and ankle,
starting soon after birth. A plaster
cast
,
splint
, or
strapping
may be used to hold
the foot in position. If this is not suc-
cessful, surgery will be needed.
talus The square-shaped foot bone that
forms the ankle joint together with the
tibia
and
fibula
.
tamoxifen An
anticancer drug
that is
used to treat certain forms of
breast can-
cer
, and, sometimes, to treat some types
of
infertility
. It may cause nausea, vomit-
ing, hot flushes, swollen ankles, and
irregular vaginal bleeding.
tampon A plug of absorbent material
inserted into a wound or body opening to
soak up blood or other secretions. The
term commonly refers to a vaginal tam-
pon, used to absorb menstrual blood.
tamponade Compression of the heart by
fluid within the
pericardium
, which may
cause breathlessness and collapse. Caus-
es include
pericarditis
, complications after
heart surgery, or a chest injury. A diag-
nosis is made by
echocardiography
, and
the fluid is removed through a needle.
tamsulosin An
alpha-blocker drug
used
for the treatment of urinary symptoms
due to an enlarged prostate gland (see
prostate, enlarged).
Side effects include
low blood pressure, drowsiness, dry
mouth, and gastrointestinal disturbances.
tan See
suntan.
tannin Also known as tannic acid, a
chemical that occurs in many plants, par-
ticularly tea. It may cause constipation,
and large amounts cause liver damage.
tantrum An outburst of bad behaviour,
common in toddlers, usually indicating
frustration and anger.
tapeworm infestation Tapeworms (ces-
todes) are ribbon-shaped worms that
infest the intestines of humans and ani-
mals. They are usually acquired by
eating undercooked meat or fish. Tape-
worms from beef, pork, and fish usually
only cause mild abdominal discomfort
or diarrhoea. However, if eggs of pork
worms are ingested, the hatched larvae
burrow into tissues to form cysts. This
leads to cysticerosis, the symptoms of
which are muscle pain and convulsions.
Rarely, fish tapeworms cause
anaemia.
Dwarf tapeworms, common in the trop-
ics, can cause diarrhoea and abdominal
discomfort. Tapeworms acquired from
dogs cause
hydatid disease.
A diagnosis
is made from the presence of worm seg-
ments or eggs in the faeces. Treatment
is with
anthelmintic drugs.
tardive dyskinesia Abnormal, uncon-
trolled movements, mainly of the face,
tongue, mouth, and neck. Tardive dyski-
nesia may be caused by prolonged use
of
antipsychotic drugs
, and is distinct
from
parkinsonism.
538
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