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Mortality

Mortality

For most of human history, mortality was very high, with life expectancy between 20 and 40 in most societies. At that life expectancy, nearly half of all children born die before reaching age 5, and fewer than 1 in 10 people survive to age 65, with infectious diseases being the biggest killers of humans over [...]

September 17, 2011 More
Morning Sickness

Morning Sickness

The existence of morning sickness early in pregnancy seems difficult to explain. Maybe it is just a mistake, an accident of nature. We all know that the first few months of fetal development are critical for the baby’s health. Why then are so many women so sick early in pregnancy, and what can be done [...]

September 17, 2011 More
Morbidity

Morbidity

In general terms, morbidity represents illness—any departure from normal well-being. There is a close relationship between mortality and morbidity, because high levels of morbidity (i.e., an unhealthy population) are associated with high death rates, and vice versa. For example, the life expectancy of women in the united States increased from 49 years at the beginning [...]

September 17, 2011 More
Mood Disorders

Mood Disorders

Mood disorders, previously called affective disorders, include a number of psychiatric diagnoses where the major symptom is a disturbance of mood. Most individuals experience a wide range of emotional states from sadness and grief to elation. Even the most extreme mood states do not usually interfere with daily functioning for a prolonged period of time. [...]

September 17, 2011 More
Mononucleosis

Mononucleosis

The term mononucleosis refers to both a specific infection and a syndrome, with considerable overlap between the two. Acute Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection produces an illness characterized by sore throat, swollen lymph glands, fatigue, and fever. The clinical illness produced by acute EBV infection is called mononucleosis; the term is also used when other infectious [...]

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Moles

Moles

Nevi, commonly referred to as moles, beauty marks, or birthmarks, are one of the many types of benign tumors of the skin. Moles can be present at birth or develop during childhood or adulthood. A normal mole can be flat or raised and is generally an evenly colored brown, tan, or black spot on the [...]

September 17, 2011 More
Mitral Valve Prolapse

Mitral Valve Prolapse

Mitral valve prolapse (MVP) is the most common congenital valvular heart disease in adults and has become the most frequent valvular cause of chronic mitral regurgitation (leakiness) in the United States. The prevalence of this disease in our country varies according to the sources in the literature due to a lack of strict criteria for [...]

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Miscarriage

Miscarriage

A miscarriage is a pregnancy that ends before the fetus reaches a point where it would be able to survive outside the uterus. The medical term for a miscarriage is a “spontaneous abortion.” About 80% of miscarriages occur in the first trimester, meaning the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. Approximately 20% of pregnancies end in [...]

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Military Service

Military Service

In 2001, there were 1,385,116 active duty members of the United States military, down from 1,610,490 in 1994. In 2001 there were 207,188 women service members, roughly 15% of the total force, up from 199,688 in 1994. Compared to 1994, the total number of active duty military members fell, while the number of women service [...]

September 17, 2011 More
Migraine

Migraine

Migraine is the second most common headache disorder, after tension-type headache. The prevalence of migraine is related to age and sex. Before puberty, boys are more susceptible than girls. After puberty, the prevalence in women increases until age 40-50 and then decreases. At age 40, 26% of women will have at least one migraine over [...]

September 17, 2011 More
Midwifery

Midwifery

Midwifery is the second oldest profession for women in the world. The practice of midwifery is documented in the Old Testament. The derivation of the word midwife means “with woman,” giving credence to the most enduring hallmark of midwifery which connotes a human presence during birth. Exclusive of the North American continent, midwifery care for [...]

September 17, 2011 More
Mental Illness

Mental Illness

Mental illness can be defined as behavioral, psychological, or biological dysfunction that interferes with an individual’s daily life and ability to cope with normal stressors. A “mental disorder” is differentiated from a “physical disorder” in order to categorize types of problematic symptoms and behaviors and to guide decisions regarding the boundary between normality and pathology. [...]

September 17, 2011 More
Menstruation

Menstruation

The menstrual cycle is a combination of a series of events occurring between a part of the brain called the hypothalamus, the pituitary gland in the brain, the ovaries, and the interior of the uterus (endometrium). Normal cycle lengths vary from 21 to 35 days even though considerable variation in the length occurs in individual [...]

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Menstrual Cycle Disorders

Menstrual Cycle Disorders

Because of the complex interplay of events, which are necessary to facilitate the occurrence of the normal menstrual cycle in the female, multiple factors can play roles in producing disorders of the menstrual cycle. Menstrual cycle disorders can be classified as disorders of the process in which eggs are released from the ovaries (ovulation), cycle [...]

September 17, 2011 More
Menopause

Menopause

The age at which 50% of the population will cease menstruation (menopause) is 51.3 years with about 8% of women ceasing menstruation before the age of 40. While the menopause represents the final menstrual period, the diagnosis is made retrospectively after loss of menstruation for 12 consecutive months. Menopause occurs as a result of a [...]

September 17, 2011 More

Menarche

The average age of menarche, or first menstruation, in the United States is 12.88 years for Caucasian girls and 12.16 years for African American girls. A popular misconception is that menarche marks the beginning of puberty; in reality, menarche occurs later in puberty. According to the widely used “five Tanner stages” of pubertal development, the [...]

September 17, 2011 More
Melanoma

Melanoma

Melanoma is a cancer of the skin that occurs when pigmented skin cells begin to grow out of control. Melanoma is often deadly, unlike basal cell and squamous cell skin cancers, which are usually curable. However, if found at an early stage, melanoma can usually be cured. Melanoma often appears as a brown or black [...]

September 17, 2011 More
Meditation

Meditation

Traditionally meditation was used exclusively for spiritual growth. More recently, it has become a valuable tool for relaxation, stress relief, and as an adjunct to medical healing. Those who meditate on a regular basis report a sense of healing, deeper concentration and insight, a heightened sense of intuition, feeling more peaceful, positive, loving, and centered. [...]

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Medicare

Medicare

Medicare (Title XVIII) of the Social Security Act is a federal health insurance program inaugurated on July 1, 1966. The program is the major health insurance for those over the age of 65 years of age, who are covered by the Social Security system, regardless of income. Amendments to the Social Security Act in 1972 [...]

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Medical Malpractice

Medical Malpractice

There are many forms of legal regulation of medical practice and its practitioners. Among other legal mechanisms, there are state professional licensing and disciplinary statutes and regulations, mandatory oversight by peer review organizations, federal and state parameters on drug and device prescribing, and financial and quality of care audits by public and private third-party payers. [...]

September 17, 2011 More