Glossary

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C

Calcium

A substance that is very important for keeping your bone, hair and nails strong. It’s found in dairy products and some other foods too.

Cancer

Any malignant tumour and/or group of diseases that are caused by cells forming in an uncontrolled way. There are many variations of cancer.

Cannula

An extremely thin plastic tube that is put into a vein to give medicines.

Capillaries

The smallest types of blood vessel – most are only big enough to allow a red blood cell through. They're about 0.008mm in diameter.

Capsulitis

Otherwise known as a frozen shoulder.

Carbohydrates

A group of substances found in food that the body converts into energy. Food containing carbohydrates include potatoes, rice, pasta and bread.

Carbon dioxide

A gas, which we breathe out into the atmosphere. Its chemical symbol is CO2

Carbon monoxide

A very poisonous gas, which can kill if breathed in for too long. Car exhausts and faulty gas fires produce it, and its chemical symbol is CO.

Cardiac

Anything relating to or affecting the heart.

Cardiac arrest

A sudden, sometimes temporary, cessation of the heart's functioning.

Cardiology

The study of the heart and how it works.

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation

Also called CPR. It’s an emergency procedure used as a way of starting breathing and circulation again if a person has stopped breathing or their heart has stopped.

Cardiovascular systems (circulatory system)

The system that circulates blood around the body. The system transports nutrients and oxygen to tissues and removes waste products.

Care Assistant

Someone who helps to care for a patient. They usually assist nurses and social workers with caring for the vulnerable and elderly in a community.

Carotid artery

Either of the two arteries that supply blood to the head and neck.

Carpal tunnel

A passageway on the palm side of the wrist that connects the forearm to the hand.

Carpal tunnel syndrome

A compression of the median nerve as it travels through the wrist and carpal tunnel to the

Cartilage

A substance that holds a body together and stops the ends of the bones rubbing together.

Cast

A rigid casing made out of plaster of Paris or plastic that is used to protect a broken bone and help the grow back together properly.

Cat or CT Scan

A special type of x-ray that can see inside the body. Normal x-rays can only see bones, but CT scans can see a lot more, helping doctors to find out what's going on.