Monthly Archives: October 2011

Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) is a rare, degenerative brain disease which involves gradual deterioration or death of cells in certain areas of the brain. Its main symptoms include tremor and reduced movements similar to Parkinson’s disease but it has additional problems leading to a distinct diagnosis separate from Parkinson’s disease.

The pulmonary artery is the artery that provides a blood supply to the lungs. This may become damaged or diseased and therefore require surgery to repair.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a disease of the immune system which causes chronic inflammation of the joints, tissues around the joints and other organs of the body.

Crohn’s disease is an inflammatory disease which can involve both the large and small intestines, but can also affect other parts of the digestive system. In more severe cases, this can lead to ulcers and narrowing of the bowel. Symptoms include abdominal pain, diarrhoea and vomiting.

Lung disease is any disease or disorder that occurs in the lungs or causes the lungs not to work properly. To be classed as severe there must have been the need for continuous daily oxygen therapy for a minimum of 6 months, a vital capacity of less than 50% of normal and FEV1 being less than 40% of normal. These are tests of your ability to breathe properly.

A stroke is where the blood supply to the brain is interrupted which causes the sudden death of some brain cells. This is usually caused by a blockage or rupture of an artery to the brain. Another term for stroke is cerebrovascular episode or accident (CVA).

Structural heart surgery is the undergoing of surgery requiring median sternotomy (surgery to divide the breastbone) on the advice of a Consultant Cardiologist, to correct any structural abnormality of the heart. 

The surgical division of the breastbone and the opening up of the chest wall, for the purpose of correcting a structural abnormality of the heart, for example, the surgical correction of a ventricular septal defect.

Systemic lupus erythematosus  – The body’s immune system produces white blood cells and proteins called antibodies to destroy viruses and bacteria that are foreign to the body. Lupus, like other auto-immune diseases, mistakes your own tissue as foreign and attacks it causing inflammation. It can affect major organs in the body and stop them functioning properly.