I
foreign bodies include the airways (see
c h o k i n g ) ,
ears (see
e a r , f o r e i g n b o d y i n ) ,
eyes (see
e y e , f o r e i g n b o d y i n ) ,
rectum,
and vagina.
foremilk
The breast m ilk that is produced at the
beginning of a feed (see
b r e a s t - f e e d -
i n g
). Forem ilk is bluish in appearance;
it contains
l a c t o s e
and proteins, but lit-
tle fat. (See also
h i n d m i l k . )
forensic medicine
The branch of medicine that is con-
cerned with the law, especially criminal
law. A forensic pathologist is a doctor
who specializes in the examination of
bodies when it appears that death was
the result of unnatural causes. Forensic
specialists
may
examine
victims
of
alleged sexual assault.
Forensic
scientists
use
laboratory
methods to study body fluids (such as
blood and semen) found on or near the
victim and compare them with samples
obtained from suspects. Forensic scien-
tists are also trained in ballistics and in
the identification of fibres from materi-
als
such
as
clothing.
In
addition,
forensic scientists may advise on
b l o o d
g r o u p s
and
g e n e t i c f i n g e r p r i n t i n g
in cer-
tain legal investigations.
forensic psychiatry
A branch of
p s y c h i a t r y
specializing in
the diagnosis of mental illness related
to crim inal behaviour.
foreplay
A
sexually
stimulating
activity
that
commonly precedes
s e x u a l i n t e r c o u r s e
but
may
also
occur
independently.
Foreplay can involve any of a range of
activities, including kissing, caressing,
and oral sex.
foreskin
The popular name for the prepuce,
w hich is the loose fold of skin that
covers the glans (head) of the
p e n i s
when it is flaccid and w hich retracts
during erection.
At birth, the foreskin is attached to
the glans and is not retractable. It sepa-
rates from the glans during the first
three to four years of life. The foreskin
may be removed (see
c i r c u m c i s i o n
) for
religious or medical reasons.
DISORDERS
In
p h i m o s i s ,
the foreskin remains per-
sistently tight after the age of five,
causing difficulty in passing urine and
FOX-FORDYCE DISEASE
ballooning of the foreskin. There may
also be recurrent
b a l a n i t i s
(infection of
the glans). Erection is frequently pain-
ful,
which is why the condition is
often discovered only at puberty. In
p a r a p h i m o s i s ,
the
foreskin
becomes
stuck in the retracted position, causing
painful
swelling
of the
glans
that
requires emergency treatment.
forewaters
A term that is commonly used to refer
to the
a m n i o t i c f l u i d
(the “waters”) that
is discharged from the uterus when
the part of the
a m n i o t i c s a c
in front of
the presenting part of the fetus rup -
tures just before childbirth. This may
happen before or after the onset of
labour. (See also
h i n d w a t e r s . )
forgetfulness
The inability to remember (see
m e m -
ory). (See also
a m n e s i a . )
formaldehyde
A colourless, pungent, irritant gas. In
medicine, a solution of formaldehyde
and a small
amount
of alcohol
in
water, a preparation known as forma-
lin, is used as a preserving medium for
tissue specimens or to harden them
before they are stained and examined.
Form alin is also used as a
d i s i n f e c t a n t
.
forme fruste
The term that is used to describe any
disease that does not follow its usual
course. One example of forme fruste is
when certain characteristic symptoms
of the disease fail to appear; another
example is when the progression of
the disorder terminates at an earlier
stage than expected.
formication
An unpleasant sensation,
as though
ants
were
crawling
over
the
skin.
This feeling may occur following abuse
of certain drugs, such as
a l c o h o l
or
m o r p h i n e .
Scratching
of the
skin in
an attempt to relieve the sensation can
sometimes cause a rash to develop,
w hich may result in an incorrect diag-
nosis of skin disease.
formula, chemical
A way of expressing the constituents
of a chemical in symbols and numbers.
Water, for example, has the formula
H
2
O, indicating that each molecule is
composed of two atoms of hydrogen
(H 2) and one of oxygen (O).
formulary
A book of formulae. The term “form u-
lary” is commonly used to refer to a
publication that lists drug preparations
and their components and effects. The
contents of a formulary may be decid-
ed by a group of medical professionals
who are working together to ensure
sim ilar patterns of drug usage.
fornix
An
archlike
structure
or
the
space
encompassed by such a structure. The
term is used to describe the fornix
cerebri, a triangular structure of
w h i t e
m a t t e r
in the
b r a i n ,
and also the recesses
of the
v a g i n a
around the
c e r v i x .
Fosamax
A brand name for alendronate sodium
(see
a l e n d r o n i c a c i d ) ,
a drug for certain
bone disorders (see
b o n e , d i s o r d e r s o f ) .
fossa
A depression or hollow area. Examples
include the posterior fossa, w hich is an
area at the back of the base of the brain
occupied by the
c e r e b e l l u m ,
and the
cubital fossa, which is the hollow at
the front of the elbow joint.
Fothergill’s disease
An alternative name for
t r i g e m i n a l n e u -
r a l g i a ,
a disorder of the
t r i g e m i n a l n e r v e
(the fifth cranial nerve, w hich supplies
the facial muscles).
fovea
An area situated near the centre of the
r e t i n a
that has
the highest
concen-
tration
of
light-sensitive
cells.
The
fovea allows detailed vision. (See also
c o l o u r v i s i o n . )
Foville’s syndrome
A neurological condition that results
from damage to tissue (usually
i n f a r c -
t i o n
or a tumour) in the centre of the
b r a i n s t e m . T h e
damage causes numbness
and paralysis on one side of the face,
together with impaired eye movement.
There is also damage to the motor
nerve fibres to the opposite side of the
body,
causing
paralysis
or
weakness
(see
h e m i p l e g i a ) .
Fox-Fordyce disease
A chronic pruritic (itching) condition,
found most commonly in women, that
is characterized by small pimples in
areas where apocrine glands (see
s w e a t
g l a n d s
) are located.
F
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