Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Tackling The Veterinary Terminology: Prefixes (pyo-)

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.
pyo- [pī′ō]/py- (before a vowel) from Greek - pus

Not pretty but straightforward. Medical terms starting with this prefix indicate presence of pus. Pus is a byproduct of the immune system, namely white blood cells, at work against an infection.

Pyoderma is a common disease of the skin that emits pus; caused by a bacterial infection. Pyometra is a severe, life-threatening disease. Technically, the word means presence of pus in the uterus. Practically, it is a severe bacterial infection of the uterus, which can be deadly.  

Pyothorax is an accumulation of pus in the chest cavity in response to a bacterial infection. Pyuria is the presence of pus in urine, indicating active inflammation in the urogenital tract. Pyuria can actually be both infectious or noninfectious.

Obviously, the way to deal with pus is by dealing with the underlying infection. 

Sometimes, such as with the pyothorax, draining of the pus can be part of the treatment.

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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)

Veterinary Prefixes (hyper-) 
Veterinary Prefixes (hypo-)

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