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Glossary

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List of terms beginning with Lu

Lubricant

Something which moistens, or makes a surface slippery.

Lubricating jelly

A jelly which moistens or makes a surface slippery.

Lumbar puncture

A test to check the fluid that circulates round the brain and spinal cord (the cerebrospinal fluid – CSF). Your doctor puts a needle into your spine to collect a small amount of the fluid. For cancer, it is usually done to see if there are any cancer cells in the fluid. But it is also used to look for other medical conditions or infection. Treatment can also be given into the CSF during a lumbar puncture.

Lumpectomy

An operation to remove a lump. This term may be used to refer to the removal of a breast cancer.

Lung function tests

Lung function tests are tests to find out how well your lungs are working. They are also called breathing tests. For example, doctors can measure the amount air you normally breathe in or out. They can measure the amount you can breathe in or out when you are trying as hard as you can, or the extra you can breathe in when you try after you have breathed in normally. The tests tell doctors about the workings of your lungs and are often done before surgery to see if you are fit enough to have an operation.

Lungs

There are two lungs (right and left) inside the rib cage in the chest. When we breathe in, air passes into the lungs. Oxygen from the air filters through the lungs into the bloodstream. Waste carbon dioxide filters back into the lungs and is breathed out.

Luteinising hormone blockers

Luteinising hormone (LH) is a hormone that controls the production of sex hormones. It is produced by a gland in the brain called the pituitary gland. It stimulates the testicles to make the hormone testosterone in men. It stimulates the ovaries to make the hormones oestrogen and progesterone in women. LH blockers are drugs that block the release of luteinising hormone from the pituitary gland. So the level of sex hormones in the body falls.

Updated: 29 June 2016