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Diseases » Airway Obstruction » Glossary

Glossary for Airway Obstruction

  • Aberrant subclavian artery abnormality: A rare defect where one the subclavian artery arises from an abnormal location on the aortic arch. The defect may cause compression of organs such as the airway and the voice box.
  • Acromegaly: A hormonal disorder involving excess growth hormone production by the pituitary gland.
  • Acute Tracheitis: Tracheitis is a bacterial infection of the trachea and is capable of producing airway obstruction
  • Bilateral abductor vocal cord paralysis syndrome: A complication that can occur following the removal of the thyroid gland.
  • Breathing difficulties: Various types of breathing difficulty (dyspnea).
  • C1esterase deficiency: C1esterase deficiency is a condition characterized by swelling under the skin or mucosal tissue - the skin, respiratory tract or gastrointestinal tract may be affected. The condition may be inherited or acquired. Symptoms tend to develop over a few days and then abate after two to five days. Swelling attacks may occur fairly regularly e.g. weekly or sporadically e.g. once or twice a year.
  • Cervical Teratoma: A cervical teratoma is a very rare form of germ cell tumor that occurs in the neck. These tumors usually develop in the fetus and tend to be large and benign even though they grow continually. In rare cases they can occur in adults in which case they tend to be malignant. These tumors can be quite large and cause problems in other neck structures. Sometimes surgery is required in the uterus or during delivery in order to ensure the infant has access to an airway.
  • Choking: Sensation of blockage or inability to breathe.
  • Chronic laryngotracheitis: It is inflammation of the mucous membrane lining the larynx, which is located in the upper part of the respiratory tract and the trachea which may cause respiratory obstruction.
  • Cyanosis: Blueness or purple coloring of skin.
  • Cystic Fibrosis: Cystic fibrosis is a hereditary disease affecting the exocrine (mucus) glands of the lungs, liver, pancreas, and intestines, causing progressive disability due to multisystem failure.
  • Death: The cessation of life
  • Hypersecretion of growth hormone: increased production of growth hormone from the pituitary gland
  • Larsen syndrome: A rare genetic disorder characterized by multiple joint dislocation, a flat face and short fingernails.
  • Level of consciousness symptoms: Symptoms related to consciousness such as coma or loss of consciousness.
  • Lymphangioleiomyomatosis: A very rare progressive disease where an unusual type of muscle cell (smooth muscle) infiltrates the lungs which eventually obstructs the flow of air through the lungs. The cause is unknown and generally occurs in women of child bearing age.
  • Mononucleosis: Common infectious virus.
  • Nasopharyngeal carcinoma: A malignant cancer that occurs in the nasopharynx area which is the upper part of the throat. Often there are no symptoms until the cancer has metastasized to other parts of the body such as the neck.
  • Nasopharynx cancer: A condition which is characterized a malignancy located in the nasopharynx
  • Respiratory conditions: Any condition that affects the respiratory system
  • Respiratory failure: Failure of the respiratory system
  • Retropharyngeal abscess: An abscess (pus-filled cavity) in the back of the throat. Prompt treatment is needed to avoid obstruction of airways and other complications including death.
  • Vocal papilloma: A common harmless bump that develops near the glottal closure and affects voice quality. The bump or tumor is caused by a papovavirus infection of the throat.
  • Wheezing: A whistling like continuous sound that is caused by the respiratory system


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