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Specific diseases

AIDS

noun

acquired immune deficiency syndrome: a serious disease that destroys the body’s immune system (=its ability to defend itself against infection) and usually causes death. AIDS is passed from one person to another through body fluids (=liquids), especially blood and semen. People first become HIV-positive and then develop full-blown AIDS

amoebic dysentery

noun

a serious disease caused by an amoeba that affects your bowels and makes you go to the toilet very frequently and become very weak

avian flu

noun

bird flu

bilharzia

noun

a serious disease in which the blood becomes infected with a type of small worm. It is common in Africa, Asia, and South America.

bird flu

noun

a type of flu (=an infectious disease that makes you hot and cold, tired and weak) that affects chickens and some other birds and animals and can also infect humans

the Black Death

noun

a disease that killed millions of people in Europe and Asia in the 14th century. Its medical name is bubonic plague.

bubonic plague

noun

a serious infectious disease that killed millions of people in Europe and Asia in the past but is now fairly rare. It is passed on by the fleas that live on black rats.

chickenpox

noun

an infectious disease that most children get once, in which the skin is covered with red spots. Chickenpox is a more serious disease in adults.

chlamydia

noun

a disease passed on during sex that can damage your reproductive system

cholera

noun

a serious disease affecting your stomach and intestines (=the long tube that carries waste out of your body) that often causes death. It is caused by drinking water or eating food infected with bacteria.

chronic fatigue syndrome

noun

an illness that makes you feel tired and weak all the time. It sometimes follows an infection by a virus.

cirrhosis

noun

a serious disease of the liver, often caused by drinking too much alcohol

CJD

noun

Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease: a serious disease that gradually destroys your brain cells and causes death. Some types may be caused by eating meat from cows that have the disease BSE.

the clap

noun

a sexually transmitted disease, especially gonorrhoea

consumption

noun

an old word for the lung disease ‘tuberculosis’

Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease

noun

the disease CJD

Crohn’s disease

noun

a disease affecting the lower part of the intestines (=tubes in the stomach that process food and carry waste out of the body)

cytomegalovirus

noun

a virus that usually causes minor infections but can cause serious infections in people with AIDS and very young babies

diphtheria

noun

a serious disease affecting your throat that makes it difficult for you to breathe

dysentery

noun

a serious disease that affects your bowels and makes you go to the toilet very frequently and become very weak

Ebola

noun

a serious disease that causes you to lose blood from all parts of your body and usually results in death

encephalitis

noun

a very serious disease affecting your brain that is caused by an infection

Epstein-Barr virus

noun

an infectious virus that makes you feel very tired and weak. Epstein-Barr virus is also called EBV.

flu

noun

a very common infectious disease that lasts a short time and makes you feel hot or cold, weak, and tired

German measles

noun

an infectious disease that causes red spots on the skin. German measles is a minor illness in children and adults, but can cause serious physical damage to babies before they are born. A more technical name for this is rubella.

giardiasis

noun

a disease affecting your intestine, caused by drinking infected water

glandular fever

noun

a disease that mainly affects young people and makes them feel very tired and weak

glaucoma

noun

a serious disease of the eyes that can make you blind

goitre

noun

a disease that affects your thyroid gland and makes your neck swollen

gonorrhoea

noun

a disease affecting the sex organs that is passed on during sex

gout

noun

a painful disease that makes the joints in your toes swell

Gulf War Syndrome

noun

a disease suffered by soldiers who fought in the 1991 war in the Persian Gulf. The cause of the disease is not exactly known.

hepatitis

noun

an infectious disease of the liver that can be very serious

herpes

noun

a disease caused by a virus that can make sore red spots appear on someone’s sex organs or near their mouth

HIV

noun

human immunodeficiency virus: a virus that can cause AIDS and is usually passed to someone else by having sex

hookworm

noun

the disease caused by hookworms

impetigo

noun

an infectious disease affecting your skin

influenza

noun

flu

kwashiorkor

noun

a serious disease that mainly affects children in Africa and is caused by a lack of protein in the food that they eat

legionnaire’s disease

noun

a serious disease of the lungs that leads to severe pneumonia and is usually spread through air conditioning systems

leprosy

noun

a serious disease that affects the skin, nerves, and bones and can cause people’s fingers and toes to fall off

leptospirosis

noun

a disease caused by bacteria that affects your kidneys and liver

lockjaw

noun

the disease tetanus

lupus

noun

a disease that affects your immune system and your skin or other parts of your body

Lyme disease

noun

a serious disease caused by insects called ticks that can affect your nervous system and heart

mad cow disease

noun

BSE

measles

noun

an infectious disease common in children in which there are red spots all over the body and a high temperature

mono

noun

glandular fever

mononucleosis

noun

glandular fever

mumps

noun

a disease that mainly affects children in which the neck becomes swollen and painful

new variant CJD

noun

a form of the illness CJD that makes people ill very quickly

NSU

noun

nonspecific urethritis: a disease that is spread by having a sexual relationship with someone who is infected

the plague

noun

a disease that spreads quickly, causing a high fever, lumps on parts of your body, and in the past usually death

polio

noun

a serious infectious disease that mostly affects children. It destroys muscle and can cause paralysis (=lack of movement in your arms and legs). Polio is a short form of the more technical word poliomyelitis.

pox

noun

an old word meaning ‘smallpox’

pox

noun

an old word meaning ‘syphilis’

rabies

noun

a very serious disease that makes an animal or a human feel crazy. Humans get it only if they are bitten by an animal with rabies.

rickets

noun

a disease that mainly affects children in which their bones become soft and bend. It is caused by a lack of vitamin D in the food that they eat or by too little exposure to sunlight.

ringworm

noun

a disease that affects the skin, causing red areas in the shape of a ring

rubella

noun

an infectious disease that causes red spots on your skin. Rubella is a minor illness in children and adults, but can cause serious physical damage to babies before they are born. A less technical name for this is German measles.

scabies

noun

a disease in which your skin becomes very itchy (=you want to rub it with your nails)

scarlet fever

noun

a disease mainly affecting children that causes a fever, sore throat, and red spots on their skin

scrofula

noun

a disease in which the lymph nodes in a person’s neck swell up

shingles

noun

an infectious disease that affects mainly adults, in which red sore spots cover a particular part of the body

sickle-cell anaemia

noun

a blood disease that mainly affects black people

sleeping sickness

noun

a serious tropical disease in which you have a fever, lose weight, and are extremely tired

smallpox

noun

a serious disease in which your skin becomes covered in spots that can leave permanent marks

swine flu

noun

a disease similar to flu that spreads quickly from one person to another and causes problems such as a sore throat and cough, thought to be related to a virus which infects pigs

syphilis

noun

a serious disease that you can get by having sex with someone who is already infected with the disease

TB

noun

tuberculosis: a serious infectious disease that mainly affects the lungs

thrush

noun

an infectious disease in which you have white spots inside your mouth

thrush

noun

an infectious disease in which a white substance is produced inside a woman’s vagina

tuberculosis

noun

a serious infectious disease affecting your lungs

typhoid

noun

a serious disease that you get from eating food or drinking water containing a type of harmful bacteria

typhus

noun

a serious disease that is spread by some small insects

variant CJD

noun

variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease: a form of CJD (=brain disease) that has recently been recognized and that mainly affects younger people

v-CJD

noun

variant CJD

VD

noun

venereal disease

venereal disease

noun

a disease that is spread when people have sex

Weil’s disease

noun

a disease affecting animals and sometimes humans, caused by bacteria that are passed through the urine of an infected animal

whooping cough

noun

an infectious disease of children that causes them to cough and make a loud noise when they breathe

yaws

noun

a tropical disease that produces red marks on your skin and makes your bones hurt

solutionism

the belief that every problem has a solution based in technology

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chicken raffle

any random process, such as a competition in which a name is drawn from a hat

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