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WCC

white cell count

Wernicke’s encephalopathy

A type of brain damage caused by deficiency of thiamine (vitamin B1).

whiplash

An injury to the soft tissues of the neck, classically arising from a car accident

white blood cell

A type of blood cell that protects the body against foreign substances and produces antibodies.

white blood cell scan

A test involving the injection of radio-labelled white blood cells into the body to determine the extent and position of inflammation and infection in the body.

whole body irradiation

A type of radiotherapy given to the whole body to destroy bone marrow cells before stem cell or bone marrow transplantation.

Wilson's disease

A rare genetic disorder in which copper builds up in the body, mainly in the liver and brain.

womb

The uterus.

X-ray

A type of electromagnetic radiation used to produce images of the body.

xanthelsma

A yellow deposit of fatty material that is visible in the skin around the eyes. This is common in elderly people and merely cosmetic but in younger people it can suggest hyperlipidaemia.

xanthoma

A yellowish deposit of fatty material in the skin.

xanthomata

A yellowish-orange, lipid-filled nodule in the skin.

yellow nail syndrome

A very rare disorder characterised by thickened, yellow nails as well as swelling to parts of the body due to lymphatic drainage problems.

Zollinger-Ellison syndrome

A rare condition characterised by severe and recurrent peptic ulcers in the stomach, duodenum and small intestine.