Mucus
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  Mucus



Mucus

    A substance secreted by various tissues in the body (the mucous membranes) made up of water, mucin (a glycoprotein), salts, and some cells. In the lungs, mucus serves to lubricate the insides of the airways and to trap inhaled foreign particles so that they can be coughed out. In asthma, however, an excess of mucus is produced and can actually block airways. Mucus also tends to be thicker and more viscous in asthmatics.

RELATED TERMS
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Mucous
Adj. Relating to or resembling mucus.

Lungs
The main respiratory organs in the chest where blood is oxygenated.

Mucus
A substance secreted by various tissues in the body (the mucous membranes) made up of water, mucin (a glycoprotein), salts, and some cells. In the lungs, mucus serves to lubricate the insides of the airways and to trap inhaled foreign particles so that they can be coughed out. In asthma, however, an excess of mucus is produced and can actually block airways. Mucus also tends to be thicker and more viscous in asthmatics.

Asthma
Asthma is a chronic, inflammatory lung disease characterized by recurrent breathing problems. People with asthma have acute episodes or when the air passages in their lungs get narrower, and breathing becomes more difficult. Sometimes episodes of asthma are triggered by allergens, although infection, exercise, cold air and other factors are also important triggers.

Viscous
Thick, coagulated; sticky or gummy.



SIMILAR TERMS
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Mucus plug
A collection of mucus, often tinged with blood, that blocks the cervix during pregnancy; known as the "bloody show" when discharged prior to labor. The texture and amount of mucus discharged varies greatly from woman to woman.



PREVIOUS AND NEXT TERMS
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Mucus

Membrane
A flexible layer surrounding a cell, organelle (such as the nucleus), or other bodily structure. The movement of molecules across a membrane is strictly regulated in both directions.

Mesothelioma
Malignant spreading tumour of the mesothelium of the pleura, pericardium, or peritoneum, arising as a result of the presence of asbestos fibres. It is diagnostic of exposure to asbestos.

Mesothelium
Tissue formed by specialized cells lining the chest, abdominal cavities, and the outer surface of most internal organs. Mesothelium helps protect the organs by producing a lubricating fluid that allows the organs to move.

Measles
Childhood infectious disease causing rash and fever. A viral infection that may cause hearing loss. It does not always lead to hearing loss, but it can cause a wide range of sensorineural hearing loss from monaural to binaural and mild to profound in degree. Measles has historically been a common childhood disease with rare complications. Mass vaccination has resulted in a dramatic decline in measles incidence, but outbreaks now occur in older populations and in infants born to women whose immunity from vaccination has deteriorated. Periodic epidemics continue to occur. The vaccine is associated with serious adverse reactions including permanent nervous system damage and thrombocytopenia (a decrease in blood platelets responsible for blood clotting with accompanying spontaneous bleeding) all resulting from autoimmune disease triggered by the vaccine. Long-term effects are unknown.

Microorganism
An organism that can be seen only under a microscope. Categories of microorganisms include Algae, Bacteria, Fungi, Protozoa, Viruses, or Subviral Agents. Also referred to as microbe.

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