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   An acronym that stands for Diabetes Insipidus (inability to concentrate the urine), Diabetes Mellitus, Optic Atrophy (degeneration of the nerve to the eye), and Deafness. These features are characteristic of this genetic disease which is also called the Wolfram syndrome. Patients usually also suffer from severe abnormalities of the nervous system that can be accompanied by behavior problems, psychiatric hospitalizations and, in about a quarter of cases, suicide attempts.


A condition in which blood glucose is not well controlled. Type I diabetics make no insulin, whereas type 2 diabetics are characterized by the overproduction of insulin, but the inability of the target cells to respond to the insulin.

A defect or failure of cell nutrition manifested as decrease in size or healthiness of an organ or tissue.

Tissue that conveys sensation, temperature, position information to the brain.

A general term for the complete or partial loss of the ability to hear from one or both ears. Deafness may result from ear diseases; vestibulocochlear nerve diseases; or brain diseases.

Hereditary. Having to do with the genes.

Illness or sickness often characterized by typical patient problems (symptoms) and physical findings (signs). Disruption sequence: The events that occur when a fetus that is developing normally is subjected to a destructive agent such as the rubella (German measles) virus.

A grouping of signs and symptoms, based on their frequent co-occurrence, that may suggest a common underlying pathogenesis, course, familial pattern, or treatment selection.

Pertaining to the medical specialty that deals with mental disorder.

The confinement of a patient in a hospital.

The act of killing oneself.



Diarrhea, rotavirus
A leading cause of severe winter diarrhea in infants and young children.

Diastrophic dysplasia
An inherited skeletal disorder involving significantly short stature (dwarfism). Characteristic features at birth include short birth length with short limbs (short-limbed dwarfism), "hitchhiker thumb", and clubfeet. Palatal malformations such as cleft palate or submucous cleft of the palate are present in 50% of patients. There is swelling of the ears in the first days to weeks of life in 80% of children; the swelling then spontaneously subsides but later the ears have a "cauliflower" appearance. Fingers are short and broad and show ulnar deviation (are inclined away from the thumb). The thumb itself has a hitch-hiker-type appearance.

The use of heat to destroy abnormal cells. Also called cauterization or electrodiathermy.

A riot control agent or "tear gas."

Dicentric chromosome
An abnormal chromosome with two centromeres rather than the normal one. Every normal chromosome has one centromere that tethers it to the pole of the spindle and is essential to the chromosome at the time of cell division. However, a dicentric chromosome is doubly tethered (by its two centomeres) and is pulled to the opposite poles of the spindle when the cell divides, causing the chromosome to break.


A chlorinated hydrocarbon insecticide.

Trade name of the insecticide dieldrin.

Diesel exhaust
The exhaust generated by diesel engines. This exhaust is a complex mixture of combustion products of diesel fuel. The exact composition depends on the type of engine, the speed and load at which it is run, and the composition of the fuel used.

Diesel exhaust particle
A respirable particle produced during the compression ignition of diesel fuel. Diesel particles are composed of elemental and organic carbon compounds as well as trace amount of other elements with toxic properties including transition metals.

Differential white cell count
The proportions of the different types of white cells in the blood, usually split into the different types of granulocytes, lymphocytes, monocytes, eosinophils, and basophils. The differential white cell count was originally done by visual inspection of the blood and is now often machine-generated. Normal values are: 24-62% neutrophils, 19-53% lymphocytes, 2-12% monocytes, 0-7% eosinophils, and 0-2% basophils.

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