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acupuncture the practice of relieving pain or curing a disease by putting needles into certain parts of the body. Acupuncture is a traditional way to treat disease in China.
AIDS a disease caused by a virus that stops the body from being able to protect itself from other diseases, usually leading to death. AIDS stands for acquired immune deficiency syndrome.
alcoholism a disease caused by the habit of drinking too much alcohol. Alcoholism is characterized by a strong desire to drink alcohol, difficulties in behaving properly, and troubling effects when alcohol use is stopped.
anthrax an infectious, often fatal disease. Anthrax usually infects sheep or cattle, but can infect humans as well.
antibiotic substance derived from fungi or other organisms and used to destroy or prevent the growth of bacteria or other disease-causing organisms.
antidote a substance that stops poison from working or cures a disease.
antiseptic a substance or drug that kills germs that cause disease or decay.
arthritis a disease of the joints in which they swell and become painful.
asthma a disease of the lungs that makes it difficult to breathe. Asthma is often caused by an allergy.
attack a sudden beginning of a disease or illness. [1/5 definitions]
bacteria microscopic organisms that often play a role in the decay of living things, the process of fermentation, and sometimes in causing disease. Bacteria are each made up of only one cell, but different kinds of bacteria can take different shapes. These organisms live in all parts of the earth including oceans, deserts, glaciers, hot springs, and in the bodies of most living things. While some kinds of bacteria are dangerous, most kinds are useful because they help in the digestion of food, in the making of soil, in the creation of medicines, and in many other natural processes.
blight a plant disease that destroys parts or all of a plant. [1/3 definitions]
booster shot an injection of a vaccine given at some time after the first injection. A booster shot continues the protection against disease begun by the earlier injection.
bug (informal) a germ that causes disease or sickness. [1/6 definitions]
cancer a disease in which certain cells divide and grow much faster than they normally do. [1/4 definitions]
chemotherapy the science or practice of treating disease by using chemicals.
chicken pox a disease that produces a fever and a rash. It is caused by a virus passed from person to person.
chigger the tiny larva of a mite that lives in the skin of animals and causes great itching. It is usually not dangerous but can sometimes spread disease.
collapse to suddenly lose strength or health because of disease or exhaustion. [1/5 definitions]
coma1 a long, deep state of being unconscious, caused by disease or injury.
cripple a person or animal that cannot use a part of its body because of a disease or injury. [1/3 definitions]