Health Literacy Thesaurus: Medical terms, phrases, references,
and their Plain English equivalents or definitions

H (H5N1 - hypotension)

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H5N1bird flu virus
Haemophilus influenzae type bHib; a lung disease
hallucinatesee things that are not there
hand hygienehand washing
hazardhazard, harmful, danger
hazardousharmful, bad, dangerous, risky
hazardous wasteharmful trash like used needles, bloody tissues, etc.
hematocrit testblood test, a test that counts your red blood cells
hematologicalrelated to the blood and blood forming organs
hemodialysisuse of a machine to clean your blood
hemoglobin A1Ca test to show your blood sugar levels over the last 3 months
hepaticrelated to the liver
hepatitis Adisease that you get from drinking bad water or eating bad food
hepatitis Bdisease that you get from someone else’s blood or from unsafe sex
hepatitis Cliver disease that you get from someone else’s blood or unsafe sex
hepatitis Dvirus that can only be found in your blood if you also have hepatitis B
hepatitis Edisease that you get from drinking bad water or from eating bad food, a disease not found in the United States
herd immunitygroup protection from disease, community immunity
herpes zostershingles, a disease that causes painful sores on your skin
highlyvery probably, mot likely, will probably happen
hivesash; red, itchy swellings on your skin
homologoussimilar, like, alike
hormonechemical, natural or manmade chemical that effects your growth, chemicals that help different parts of your body know how they should work
hostperson; animal
HPAIa dangerous bird flu
HPVa virus that can cause cervical cancer
humidifyto moisten air
hyperlipidemiahigh cholesterol
hypertensiveheart disease high blood pressure
hypersensitivitystrong reaction
hypertensionhigh blood pressure
hyposensitivityweak reaction
hypotensionlow blood pressure
hysterectomysurgery to remove the womb

Source: CDC Plain Language Thesaurus for Health Communications. Other related materials: Vaccines & Immunizations Glossary; Harvard School of Public Health "Plain Language Glossaries" for asthma, arthritis, and lupus; Medical Library Association "Deciphering Medspeak" for diabetes, stroke, and HIV-AIDS


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