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Glossary

An A to Z glossary of disabilities

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Glossaries

Term Main definition
Pancreatitis
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An A to Z glossary of disabilities

Pancreatitis is the term given when the pancreas becomes inflamed which can cause severe pain in the abdomen.

There are two types…

Acute Pancreatitis – When the pancreas becomes inflamed for a short period of time.

Chronic Pancreatitis – When the pancreas becomes permanently damaged from inflammation.

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Panic Attacks
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An A to Z glossary of disabilities

Panic Attacks occur when you have a surge of extreme psychological and physical symptoms. They can be caused by fear, anxiety and apprehension. When an attack occurs the individual may experience trembling, sweating, a sensation of an irregular heart beat and nausea.

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panic disorder
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An A to Z glossary of disabilities

A series of panic attacks which occur on a regular basis for no reason. People who suffer panic disorder can become stressed and feel high levels of anxiety at regular interviews.

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paraesthesia
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An A to Z glossary of disabilities

Paraesthesia is similar to pins and needles – feeling like a pricking/ numbness on the skin, but it’s a more serious condition.

It can be temporary or chronic causing symptoms such as burning, tinging and in chronic cases a stabbing pain.

If paraesthesia affects your quality of life you should seek medical attention as it could be a sign of an underlying condition.

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paranoia
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An A to Z glossary of disabilities

A mental health condition brought on by jealousy, self-importance or feelings of hostility. Paranoia can also be a symptom of chronic personality disorder, schizophrenia or drug abuse.

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paraplegic
Glossaries - Disabilities
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An A to Z glossary of disabilities

An injury to the spinal cord which takes away the movement and feelings of the legs. Paraplegics may have a restricted leg movement although in more serious cases they can lose complete control and feeling of their body below the chest.

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Parkinsons
Glossaries - Disabilities
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An A to Z glossary of disabilities

A condition which affects parts of the brain and becomes progressively worse over the years.

The three main symptoms of Parkinson’s are stiff muscle movements, slow movements and tremors. Those living with the illness can also suffer from constipation, depression, anosmia (loss of sense of smell) and insomnia.

Parkinson’s is caused by a loss of nerve cells in the part of the brain called substantia nigra which reduces the dopamine chemical in the brain.

Pataus Syndrome
Glossaries - Disabilities
Glossaries Description -

An A to Z glossary of disabilities

Also known at trisomy 18 Patau’s Syndrome is a serious genetic condition which is present in babies carrying three copies of chromosome 18 instead of two.

The condition severely disrupts development and in most cases result in a miscarriage or the baby dying shortly after birth.

One in 5,000 babies are affected by Patau’s Syndrome and over 90% die within their first year.

Babies with Patau’s Syndrome will weigh lighter than average and 80% will suffer severe heart defects.

Symptoms include cleft lip and palate, absence or abnormal small eyes, deafness, missing skin on the scalp, abnormal small distance between the eyes and problems with the nasal passages.

Other symptoms are abnormal cysts in the kidneys, abdominal wall defects inside the womb, an enlarged clitoris in girls and abnormal small penis in boys.

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periodic paralysis
Glossaries - Disabilities
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An A to Z glossary of disabilities

A rare group of genetic conditions that lead to weakness or paralysis from common triggers such as stress, physical activity, cold, heat, high carbohydrate meals or a lack of food.

 

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peripheral arterial disease
Glossaries - Disabilities
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An A to Z glossary of disabilities

A common condition where fatty deposits clog up the arteries restricting body supply to the leg muscles.

PAD is also known as peripheral vascular disease.

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peripheral neuropathy
Glossaries - Disabilities
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An A to Z glossary of disabilities

Our peripheral nervous system tangles its way outside the central nervous system controlling autonomic nerves, sensory nerves and motor nerves.

Peripheral neuropathy occurs when the nerves are damaged causing a series of symptoms which can include a loss of balance, muscle weakness, burning and stabling sensations, numbness and a lack of co-ordination.

One in ten people aged over the age of 55 in the UK are expected to be affected by some form of peripheral neuropathy.

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periventricular leukomalacia
Glossaries - Disabilities
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An A to Z glossary of disabilities

Periventricular leukomalacia. Also known as PVL, is a brain injury which affects premature children.

The condition kills off brain tissue around the fluid-filled areas known as ventricles creating holes in the brain which can cause physical and mental challenges.

Symptoms include vision loss, difficulty with movement and the tightness of muscles.

“Leuko” is a reference to the brain’s white matter.

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phocomelia
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An A to Z glossary of disabilities

A rare condition, caused by taking the drug thalidomide, which causes underdeveloped or missing limbs and the hands or feet being attached to the trunk/ torso.

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Picks disease
Glossaries - Disabilities
Glossaries Description -

An A to Z glossary of disabilities

Pick’s disease is a form of dementia which, to start with, can show subtle changes in a person’s personality.

Over time the condition can become more severe making the patient form inappropriate actions such as swearing and offensive behaviour.

The condition is caused by a progressive destruction of nerve cells in the brain and is one of the least common forms of dementia.

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Pierre Robin syndrome
Glossaries - Disabilities
Glossaries Description -

An A to Z glossary of disabilities

Also known as PRS, Pierre Robin syndrome is a condition when a baby is born with a small lower jaw and has difficulty breathing because of an obstruction to the airway.

He child is also likely to be born with an opening in the roof of the mouth known as a cleft.

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