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Glossary

Terms

C


Calcium channel blocker
A type of medication that is a vasodilator and is occasionally used to treat PAH (e.g. amlodipine); also, often used for patients who have systemic hypertension
Capillaries
The smallest type of blood vessel, located throughout the body including lungs; the place where oxygen, nutrients, and waste products are exchanged from bloodstream to cells and vice versa.
Carbon Dioxide
A gaseous molecule that is one of the waste products generated by the cells of the body.
Cardiac output
The amount of blood (measured in liters per minute) being pumped out by the heart.
Cardiologist
A doctor who is specially trained in diseases of the heart and blood vessels.
Central venous catheter
An intravenous line that is placed in one of the larger veins of your body (usually in the chest) to deliver medications
Cirrhosis
End-stage liver disease due to scarring; often caused by alcohol or viral hepatitis over many years
Congenital heart defects
A defect in the structure of the heart that is present at birth
Congestive heart failure
A disease in which the heart is stiff or does not pump adequately causing a back up of blood and fluid.
Coronary arteries
The blood vessels that supply oxygenated blood to the heart itself; there are three main coronary arteries.
Coronary artery disease
Narrowing of the coronary arteries due to atherosclerosis (build up of cholesterol plaques in the walls of the arteries).
CT Scan
A specialized X-ray machine that can provide detailed images of internal organs including the lungs and their blood vessels.