Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Tackling The Veterinary Terminology: Prefixes (hyper-)

Remember the Spelling Bee? Big words are easier to tackle when you understand how they're put together. Veterinary terms are composed in the same way. Just like with other words, the main parts of a veterinary term are a prefix, a root, and a suffix. The difference is that they typically come more directly from Greek or Latin.

A prefix is placed at the beginning of a word to modify its meaning by providing additional information. It usually indicates number, location, time, or status.
hyper- [hī′pər] from Greek - elevated, excessive

There probably isn't anybody who isn't familiar with the word hyperactive. It can be your kids, or your dogs, virtually climbing the walls. All go, no stop activity level.

In life, everything is about a degree. You know, too much of a good thing ... This suffix indicates that things are way past being a good thing.

Hyperthermia, excessive heat, body temperature greatly above normal. (also heat stroke). Hyperglycemia, blood sugar levels above normal, a hallmark symptom of diabetes. Hyperadrenocorticism, also knows as Cushing's disease, overproduction of adrenal hormones, particularly cortisol. Hyperthyroidism, overproduction of thyroid hormone.

The list of examples is actually quite long. Everything in the body is strictly regulated. If for whatever reason this regulation fails, it can result in a state of excess.

None of these conditions are to be taken lightly.

The body works hard on regulating these things for a reason. When it gets out of hand, it is always damaging, and it can be deadly, if balance is not restored.

Excessive states are not self-induced, they don't just happen.

They are result of failed regulation. Sometimes a healthy regulatory processes simply cannot keep up with the conditions, such as with hyperthermia. Sometimes the regulation itself fails, such as with diabetes. They all need to be appropriately addressed.

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Related articles:
Veterinary Suffixes (-itis)
Veterinary Suffixes (-oma) 
Veterinary Suffixes (-pathy)  
Veterinary Suffixes (-osis) 
Veterinary Suffixes (-iasis) 
Veterinary Suffixes (-tomy) 
Veterinary Suffixes (-ectomy)  
Veterinary Suffixes (-scopy) 
Veterinary Suffixes (-emia)
Veterinary Suffixes (-penia)
Veterinary Suffixes (-rrhea) 
Veterinary Suffixes (-cyte) 
Veterinary Suffixes (-blast) 
Veterinary Suffixes (-opsy)
Veterinary Suffixes (-ac/-al)

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