This is only a partial list of the hundreds of terms and specialties associated with brain injury, spinal cord injury, and limb amputation. Are you having trouble understanding these words? Have you found a word you need help with? Call our team and have all your questions answered: (501) 526-7656.
Acalcula: When a person cannot perform simple math problems.
Acuity: Describes how sharp or accurate a person’s thought, vision, or hearing is.
Active Range of Motion (AROM): The amount of joint movement a person can make using their only muscle strength without assistance). Also see “Passive Range of Motion“.
Activities of Daily Living (ADL’s): Also called ADL’s, or daily living skills. These are routine activities carried out for personal hygiene and health such as eating, dressing, grooming, shaving, etc. Nurses, occupational and physical therapists are the main coaches for these.
Acute: 1. Sharp or severe. 2. Severe symptoms that come on quickly and only stay for a short time. 3. The early stages of an injury (as opposed to chronic, which is long term).
Affect (n.): The outward signs of a person’s emotions. For example, the
phrase “flat affect” might be used to describe someone showing no emotion.
Agitation: When a person seems upset or bothered, often shown through restless activity, pacing, crying, or laughing with or without an apparent reason, pulling at clothes or people, and not being able to stay still.
Agnosia: When the brain does not process the senses, which may keep a person from being able to recognize objects, people, or sounds.
Agraphia: When a person cannot write.
Alexia: When a person cannot read, often because they cannot process words.
Alertness: Being awake and able to respond to stimulation.
Ambivalence: A lack of feelings or conflicting feelings about an object, person or action, emotion, idea, situation, etc.
Ambulate or ambulation: To walk.
Amnesia: Lack of memory about events occurring during a particular period of
Aneurysm: Abnormal balloon-like deformity in the wall of a blood vessel, usually an artery, that weakens the wall of the vessel. If the size increases, the wall weakens as the balloon grows larger, and may eventually burst, causing a hemorrhage.
Anomia: Unable to remember names of objects.
Anosmia: Loss of the sense of smell.
Anoxia: When there is no oxygen to the brain. Cells of the brain need oxygen to stay alive, so this damages brain cells.
Anterograde Amnesia: When someone cannot create new memories (can be partial or complete loss), but they are still able to remember things from before the event that caused the amnesia.
Anterolateral: Front and side.
Anteroposterior: Both front and back.
Antibody: An immune response the body creates to attack bacteria or viruses. It is carried in the blood as a type of protein.
Anticonvulsant: Medicine used to help prevent seizures (e.g., Dilantin, Phenobar, Mysoline, Tegretol).
Antidepressants: Medicine used to treat depression.
Anxiety: Feelings of fear, panic, apprehension, uneasiness, agitation,
uncertainty. Anxiety can cause irritability, confusion, and bodily reactions such as increased heart rate, increased blood pressure, fatigue, sweating, sleep issues, and muscle tension.
Apathy: Indifference or lack of emotion, concern, or interest.
Aphasia: Partial or total loss of the ability to use words and/or to understand language.
Apraxia: A motor disorder that limits a person’s control of certain movements, even though their muscles are fine. This can limit certain movements, such as those that involve facial muscles, or it can keep a person from moving their arms or legs. This condition can vary by type, but mostly affects planning motor movements. For example, dressing apraxia or constructional/drawing apraxia.
Aprosodia: When a person cannot perform or understand parts of language such as rhythm, pitch, or intonation. Arachnoid Membrane: The middle three membranes (layers of tissue) that protect the brain and spinal cord.
Arousal: When a person is waking.
Arterial line: A thin tube inserted in an artery that gives constant blood pressure readings and allows blood samples to be taken for analysis.
Articulation: Movement of the lips, tongue, teeth, and palate into specific patterns for speech (Also, a movable joint).
Aspiration: When fluid or food enters the lungs through the windpipe (trachea). This can cause a lung infection or pneumonia.
Ataxia: Loss of full control of bodily movements caused by damage to the cerebellum (the part of the brain that controls muscle coordination). This can limit a person’s ability to walk, talk, eat, and to perform other self-care tasks.
Atrophy: A weakening in muscles, tissues, organs, or part of the body caused by lack of nourishment, underuse, neglect, or loss of nerve supply.
Attention or Concentration: The ability to focus on a given task or set of stimuli for an appropriate period of time.
Augmentative and Alternative Communication: Use of forms of communication other than speaking, such as: sign language, “yes/no” signals, gestures, picture board, and computerized speech systems to compensate (either temporarily or permanently) for severe expressive communication disorders.
Automatism: A person is in a trance-like state but appears normal, and performs actions without thinking or knowing what they are doing. Can last for minutes or days, often associated with severe emotional distress or a type of epilepsy.
Axon: The nerve fibers that carry instructions and sensory feelings in the body.
Balkan Frame: A rectangular frame placed over a bed to help with position and movement. Loops or bars can be hung from the frame to help with therapy activities or getting in and out of bed.
Bed Mobility: A person’s level of movement in bed, such as rolling over, scooting, sitting up, and lying down.
Behavioral inflexibility: When a person behaves or completes tasks the same way and cannot change or adjust these patterns.
Bilateral: Meaning both the right and left sides of the body.
Bio-feedback: Technology that uses sensors and visual cues or sounds to give information about bodily functions, to help a person to learn control over them. This can be used for relaxing muscles, reducing pain, lowering heart rate or blood pressure, and relieving stress.
Brain Injury, Acquired: Any brain injury or brain damage that occurred after birth.
Brain Injury, Closed: When a blow or jolt to the head or sudden motion causes the brain to hit the skull and causes damage to the brain.
Brain Injury, Mild: When a brain injury causes the Glasgow Coma Scale to fall between 13-15, and at least one of the following happens: 1) any period of loss of consciousness, 2) any loss of memory for events immediately before or after the accident, 3) any change in mental state at the time of the accident (e.g., feeling dazed, disoriented, or confused), 4) brain, nerve, or spinal dysfunctions which may or may not fade. Brain injury is only mild where the severity of the injury does not exceed the following: a) loss of consciousness of approximately 30 minutes or less; b) after 30 minutes, an initial Glasgow Coma Scale score of 13-15; c) Post Traumatic Amnesia not greater than 24 hours
Brain Injury, Traumatic: Damage to living brain tissue caused by an external force. It is usually characterized by a loss of consciousness (amnesia or coma) that can be very brief (minutes) or very long (months or indefinitely). The term does not include brain injuries that are caused by insufficient blood supply, lack of oxygen to the brain, toxic substances, growths or tumors, disease-producing organisms, birth trauma or defects, or degenerative processes.
Brain Stem: The lower part of the brain that connects to the spinal cord. Controls functions that are necessary for survival (breathing, heart rate) and for arousal (being awake and alert).
Catheter: A flexible tube inserted into the body. Catheters are used to move fluids into and out of the body or to take measurements.
Central Nervous System: The brain and spinal cord.
Cerebellum: Located in the back of the head; the part of the brain that helps with coordination, accuracy, and timing of movement.
Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF): A colorless liquid that protects the brain and spinal
cord from physical impact or shock. Fluid increases and decreases as space in the skull changes. To make diagnoses, a lumbar puncture (spinal tap) is used to draw CSF for analysis. Some TBIs also require an external ventricular drain to drain excess CSF.
Cervical: The upper part of the spine, located in the neck. This part of the spine sends messages from the brain to control all aspects of the body.
Circumlocution: The use of many words to describe something that could be
described with less words. May be used when the specific term is forgotten.
Clonus: Muscle spasm involving repeated, often rhythmic, contractions.
Closed Head Injury: A trauma to the brain in which the brain is not penetrated by any object.
Cognitive Impairment: Difficulty with basic thinking functions like perception, memory, attention or reasoning.
Cognitive Process: Higher mental functioning such as learning, memory,
imagination, comprehension, and decision making. Or, the way an individual
becomes aware of people, objects, and situations in the environment and their meaning.
Cognitive Rehabilitation: Provided by a speech pathologist, occupational
therapist, or a neuropsychologist. This type of therapy helps to improve
independence in daily living skills by teaching patients strategies to overcome
thinking difficulties caused by their TBI.
Coma: State of unconsciousness from which the patient cannot be awakened or aroused, even by powerful stimulation; lack of any response to one’s
environment; defined clinically as the inability to follow a one-step command
consistently (Glasgow Coma Scale of 8 or less).
Combativeness: The act of being especially argumentative, fighting off help
or medical care, or starting fights.
Communicative Disorder: Problems processing or using hearing, language,
and/or speech processes.
Cognitive Dissonance: Inconsistent thoughts, beliefs, attitudes or behavior.
Comprehension: Ability to understand spoken, written, or general communication.
Concentration: Keeping attention on a task over a period of time.
Concrete Thinking: Literal thinking that is focused on the physical world, such as facts about the here and now, physical objects, and literal definitions.
Concussion: Temporary unconsciousness resulting in confusion, altered mental state, or other effects from a blow to the head or sudden jolt of the head. Sometimes the terms “concussion” and “mild TBI” are used to mean the same thing.
Confabulation: Talk about people, places, and events with no basis in reality.
May seem to be “made up stories”, but this is often an effort to make sense of
Confusion: A state in which a person is bewildered, perplexed, or unable to self orient.
Conjugate Movement: Both eyes move simultaneously in the same direction.
Convergence of the eyes toward the midline (crossed eyes) is a disconjugate
Continence: The ability to control urination and bowel movements.
Contracture: Loss of range of motion in a joint due to abnormal shortening of soft tissues.
Coup/Contrecoup: Coup is bruising or tissue damage at the point of impact,
while Contrecoup is damage to brain tissue on the opposite side from the
Contusion: Bruised or injured tissue or skin.
Cortical Blindness: Full or partial loss of vision from damage to the brain’s
occipital cortex. This can happen even if the eye is undamaged and functioning normally.
CT Scan/Computerized Axial Tomography: A series of X-rays taken at
different levels of the body. For head injuries, it’s used to assess the brain, skull, and intracranial structures. A scan is often taken soon after the injury to help decide if surgery is needed. The scan may be repeated later to see how the brain is recovering.
Decerebrate Posture (Decerebrate Rigidity): An abnormal body posture,
usually from severe brain damage, that involves the arms and legs being held
straight out, toes pointed down, and the head and neck arched backward. Muscles are tight and rigid.
Decreased Insight: Patient may not recognize problems he is having or may
attempt to rationalize or minimize problems.
Decubitus: Pressure area, bed sore, skin opening, or skin breakdown caused by pressure. The area may be discolored or an open wound.
Demyelination: The loss of nerve fiber “insulation” from trauma or disease,
causing issues with nerve impulses and neurological problems.
Depression: A mood disorder that causes a person to be sad, tired, or less
motivated to participate in their daily activities.
Diffuse Brain Injury: Injury to a widespread area of the brain.
Diplopia: Seeing two images of a single object; double vision. See also vision after head injury.
Disinhibition (Lack of inhibition): Inability to control impulsive behavior and
Disorientation: Not knowing where you are, who you are, or the current date.
Health professionals often speak of a normal person as being oriented “times
three”, which refers to person, place, and time.
DLS: Daily Living Skills: Also called Activities of daily living. These are routine
activities carried out for personal hygiene and health such as eating, dressing,
grooming, shaving, etc.
Dorsiflexion: Bending the ankle to bring the foot back (opposite of pointing the foot and toes).
Dura Mater: The tough outer membrane that covers and protects the brain and spinal cord.
Dysarthria: Difficulty in forming words or speaking them because of weakness of muscles used in speaking. Speech may be slurred and very slow. Voice quality may be abnormal, usually more nasal; volume may be weak; drooling may occur. Dysarthria may accompany aphasia or occur alone.
Dysphagia: Difficulty in swallowing. It also includes difficulty in moving material from the mouth to the stomach. This also includes problems in positioning food in the mouth.
Edema: Collection of fluid in the tissue that causes swelling.
EEG (Electroencephalogram): A procedure that uses electrodes on the scalp to record electrical activity of the brain. Used to detect epilepsy, coma, and brain death.
EMG (Electromyography): A test that measures muscle and nerve activity by recording the response to electrical stimulation.
Emotional Lability: Rapid, drastic changes in emotional states. For example, inappropriate laughter, crying, or getting angry for no apparent reason.
Endotracheal Tube: A tube inserted through the patient’s mouth or nose. It passes through the throat and into the air passages to help breathing. To do this it must also pass through the patient’s vocal cords. The patient will be unable to speak as long as the endotracheal tube is in place. It is this tube that connects a ventilator to the patient.
Euphoria: Exaggerated sense of wellbeing that may not be based on reality.
Exacerbate: To make something worse.
Executive Functions: The abilities needed to formulate, plan, and carry out actions and self-regulate.
Extended Care Facility-Basic: Residential facility that offers 24-hour nursing, supervision, and assistance with activities of daily life.
Extended Care Skilled Facility: Offers 24-hour nursing, supervision, and assistance with ADLs, as well as various types of therapy and rehabilitation.
Extremity: Describes the outermost, or farthest points. May mean arms and legs, or especially hands and feet.
FIM (Functional Independence Measure) Score: A score that describes a person’s degree of disability. The scores are often used to track changes during
Flaccid: Lacking normal muscle tone; limp.
Flexion: Bending a joint.
Foley Catheter: A tube inserted into the bladder for urine collection.
Frontal lobe: Front part of the brain, which is involved in planning, organizing, problem solving, selective attention, personality, and other “higher thinking functions”.
Frustration Tolerance: The ability to complete a task despite apparent difficulty. Individuals with a poor frustration tolerance will often refuse to complete tasks which are the least bit difficult. Angry behavior, such as yelling or throwing things while attempting a task, can show poor frustration tolerance.
Gainful Occupation: Any type of employment for which compensation is received, including work for which payment is “in kind” rather than in cash.
Gait Training: Gait is another word for walking, so gait training offers instruction on walking (can be with or without assistance or equipment).
Generalization: Being able to take learning from one setting into another (learning to transfer from the wheelchair to the bed in the hospital; then being able to do the same at home).
Gastrostomy Tube (G-Tube): A tube inserted through a surgical opening into the stomach. It is used to introduce liquids, food, or medicine into the stomach when the patient is unable to take these substances by mouth.
Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS): A system used to assess the degree of brain impairment and to identify the seriousness of injury in relation to outcome. The system involves three measures: eye opening, verbal responses and motor response. These three measures are given a score that tells the level of consciousness and degree of dysfunction. Scores range from a high of 15 to a low of 3. Persons are considered to have experienced a ’mild brain’ injury when their score is between 13 and 15. A score of 9 to 12 is considered to reflect a ‘moderate’ brain injury and a score of 8 or less reflects a ‘severe’ brain injury.
Grief Process: Emotional responses to grief which progress from alarm to disbelief and denial, to anger and guilt, to finding a source of comfort, and finally to adjustment.
Hematoma: Collection of blood clotting in tissues following the rupture of blood vessels.
Epidural Hematoma—outside the brain and its fibrous covering but under the skull.
Subdural Hematoma—between the brain and its fibrous covering (dura).
Intracerebral Hematoma—in the brain tissue.
Subarachnoid Hematoma—around the surface of the brain, between the dura and arachnoid membranes.
Hemianopsia/Hemianopia: Loss of vision for one half of the field of vision, not from actual blindness but from processing problems in the brain. The issue is not for the entire right or left eye, but for the right or left half of vision in each eye.
Hemiparesis: Weakness, paralysis or loss of movement on one side of the body.
Hemiplegia: Paralysis to one side of the body, due to injury of the neurons that carry signals to the muscles from the motor areas of the brain.
Hemorrhage: A ruptured blood vessel that causes heavy bleeding.
Heterotopic Ossification (HO): Extra knot-like bone that sometimes forms in the soft tissue after an injury. It can decrease range of motion and flexibility or it can cause pain.
Hoyer Lift: A type of equipment used to transfer a person from a bed to a wheelchair or commode.
Hydrocephalus: Too much fluid in the brain, causing increased pressure in the skull.
Hypoxia: A decrease in the amount of oxygen reaching the tissues of the body.
Impulsivity: Acting without thought or acting too quickly, which can lead to errors, difficulties, or accidents.
Incontinence: When a person cannot control bowel and bladder functions. Many people who are incontinent can improve control with training.
Informed Consent: The patient’s right to know the risks and benefits of a medical procedure.
Intracranial Pressure (ICP): The pressure inside the skull, around the brain. Too much pressure can be life-threatening.
Intracranial Pressure Monitor: A device used to measure the ICP (pressure in the skull) with a small tube (catheter) attached to the skull and a transducer to register the pressure.
Ischemia: Low blood flow to an organ or part of the body that may cause an oxygen shortage, resulting in tissue damage.
Judgment: Using information to make a decision that is safe and appropriate for the situation.
Kinesthesia: Awareness of how body parts feel as they move.
Emotional Lability: Obvious, sometimes extreme or sudden changes in a person’s emotional state (e.g., uncontrolled laughing or crying)
Lack of Inhibition: Some brain injuries impair the systems that monitor the brain. A person may no longer seem to care about society’s idea of proper behavior, or they may be very angry and hostile, use profanity frequently, or make inappropriate sexual remarks.
Lack of Initiation: The person may find it very difficult to initiate action, even though he may know what to do.
Leg Bag: A small, thick plastic bag that can be tied to the leg and collects urine. It is connected by tubing to a catheter inserted into the urinary bladder.
Lesion: Another word for bruise or wound.
Locked-in-Syndrome: A disconnection of the motor cells in the lower brain stem and spinal cord from controlling signals issued by the brain leaves the patient completely paralyzed and mute, but able to receive and understand sensory stimuli. Communication may be possible by code using blinking or movements of the jaw or eyes.
Lumbar: The lower part of the spine, below the thoracic.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI): A machine that uses electromagnetic energy to create pictures of a person’s soft tissue, central nervous system, and musculoskeletal systems.
Malingering: To pretend to be unable to do something to avoid work or duties.
Memory: Knowing information from the past and day-to-day. Problems with memory are common after head injury
Memory, Episodic: Memory for ongoing events in a person’s life. Sometimes this is more easily impaired than semantic memory, perhaps because it has been repeated less.
Memory, Immediate: The ability to recall numbers, pictures, or words immediately following presentation. Patients with immediate memory problems have difficulty learning new tasks because they cannot remember instructions.
Memory, Long Term: In neuropsychological testing, this refers to recall thirty minutes or longer after presentation. This type of memory requires mental storage and retrieval of information.
Memory, Semantic: Part of the long-term memory that recalls ideas and concepts that are common knowledge, such as the names of colors, the sounds of letters, the capitals of countries and other basic facts acquired over a lifetime.
Memory, Short Term: Primary or ‘working’ memory, its contents are in conscious awareness—A limited capacity system that holds up to seven chunks of information over periods of 30 seconds to several minutes, depending upon the person’s attention to the task.
Motor Control: The ability to contract or relax a particular muscle or group of muscles.
Muscle Tone: The amount of tension in a muscle at rest. Tight muscles are described as having high muscle tone, and floppy muscles are described as having low tone.
Myelin: The fatty white material that insulates nerves and is essential for proper nervous system function.
Nasogastric Tube (NG tube): A tube placed through a person’s nose and throat to the stomach. This tube allows for direct “tube feeding” to maintain the nutritional status of the person or removal of stomach acids.
Neglect: Paying little or no attention to something. This could refer to a person, place, or even a particular part of the body.
Neologism: Nonsense or made up words, often unrealized by the speaker.
Neurogenic Bladder: A lack of bladder control due to brain, spinal cord, or nerve damage, which may be the result of disease or injury.
Neuropsychologist: A psychologist who specializes in evaluating the brain and behavior and planning training programs to help the survivor of brain injury return to normal functioning. Often works closely with schools and employers as well as with caregivers of the injured person.
Non-ambulatory: Unable to walk.
Nystagmus: Involuntary movement of the eyes.
Occipital Lobe: The back region of the brain, which processes visual information. Damage to this lobe can result in vision issues.
Olfactory Stimulation: When the sense of smell is stimulated (when a person smells an odor, whether pleasant or foul).
Orientation: Awareness of one’s environment or situation and the ability to use this information appropriately in a functional setting. Ex., knowing who you are, where you are, what day it is, etc.
Paraplegia: Lower body paralysis. Loss of function begins below the cervical spinal cord, while the upper body is still completely or mostly functional. Degrees of lower limb paralysis may still vary depending on the severity of spinal cord damage.
Parietal Lobe: Part of the brain at the upper back area of the head. It is very involved in processing information from the five senses.
Passive Range of Motion: The amount a joint can move when someone else is moving your limb.
Percutaneous Endoscopic Gastrostomy (PEG) Tube: A tube surgically placed in the stomach for feeding.
Perception: To be able to make sense of what one sees, hears, feels, tastes, or smells.
Perseveration: Repeating a word, gesture, or phrase. This may mean answering a question that is not being asked anymore or responding to something that is no longer happening. It may also mean to ask the same question over and over.
Physiatrist: A doctor who specializes in physical medicine and rehabilitation.
Plateau: When a person gets better for a period of time and then stays the same.
Plasticity: The way that the nervous system can rewire itself to get back to normal levels of action after an injury.
Post-Concussion Syndrome: Persistent emotional and thinking problems after a mild TBI that continue past what would normally be expected in recovery. Symptoms may include difficulty thinking and knowing things that a person would have known before the injury, mood changes, sensitivity, anxiety, and physical symptoms, such as headache and dizziness.
Post-Traumatic Amnesia (PTA): A period after a brain injury when the patient loses their short-term memory. They may remember things from before the injury but not new information. This means they cannot learn anything new. Memory of this period is never stored; therefore, things that happened during that period cannot be recalled. See also Anterograde Amnesia.
Posture: The way a person holds their body when standing or sitting.
Pre-morbid Condition: Describes a person before the disease or injury occurred.
Pressure Sore: A discolored or open area of skin damage caused by consistent pressure to an area. Common areas most prone to breakdown are buttocks or backside, hips, shoulder blades, heels, ankles, and elbows.
Problem-Solving: Ability to consider the possible outcomes of different solutions to a problem and to select the most advantageous solution. Individuals with deficits in this skill may become “immobilized” when faced with a problem. In other words, by being unable to think of possible solutions, they may respond by doing nothing.
Prognosis: A doctor’s prediction about how the patient will recover from a disease or injury.
Prone: Lying on stomach.
Proprioception: The way people know what the body is doing without thinking about it. For example, if your legs are crossed or your hand is raised, you know that without looking. Damage to the brain can interrupt this sense.
Prosody: Patterns of speech such as rhythm and tone.
Quadriparesis: Weakness in the limbs that causes partial loss of function in all four limbs of the body.
Quadriplegia: Total loss of function in all four limbs of the body. Also referred to as Tetraplegia.
Rancho Los Amigos Scale: Measures the level of awareness, behavior, and thought function in a brain injury survivor.
Range of Motion (ROM): The amount a person is able to move any part of the body in any direction.
Reasoning: Ability to think and process information. Processing involves taking in information from the environment, remembering it, understanding it, breaking it down into parts and using these parts separately or in combination with other knowledge.
Reasoning, Abstract: Ability to think and process words with multiple meanings, or to process ideas or information about something that cannot be seen.
Reasoning, Concrete: The ability to understand the literal meaning of a phrase.
Reasoning, Sequencing: The ability to organize information or objects in the mind. Nearly every activity, including work and leisure tasks, requires sequencing. For example, when cooking certain foods, ingredients must be added and mixed in a specified order; in dressing, undergarments must be put on prior to outer garments.
Regeneration: The regrowth and healing of nerves. This can help a person restore function after a brain or spinal injury.
Respite Care: When someone takes care of a person temporarily, to give the usual caregiver time off or time to rest.
Seizure: A sudden increase in electric activity in the brain, which changes how someone looks or acts for a period of time. Seizures can take different forms, such as violent shaking, repeated movements, or even just a period of “zoning out” or looking blank.
Selective Attention: Being able to focus on one thing even when several things are happening at the same time.
Selfishness: Injury may cause the person to be very wrapped up in themselves, often to the point that caregivers think the patient is unfeeling.
Sensation: A physical or emotional feeling.
Sensorimotor: Refers to all aspects of movement and sensation and the interaction of the two.
Sensory Integration: Interaction of two or more sensory processes in a manner that enhances the adaptiveness of the brain.
Sequencing: Reading, listening, expressing thoughts, describing events or contracting muscles in a certain order or meaningful manner.
Shunt: A tube used to drain fluid from the brain or to balance pressure around the spine.
Spasticity: When muscles have more tone and tightness, causing them to react strongly to reflexes. This may make movements appear jerky.
Spatial Ability: Skills that help people to understand the spatial relationship between objects and oneself. Includes being able to visualize objects, understand distances between objects, and one’s own placement in a space.
Subdural: Beneath the dura (tough membrane, shell), which covers the brain and spinal cord.
Tactile Defensiveness: Being overly sensitive to touch by withdrawing, crying, yelling, or striking when one is touched.
Temporal Lobes: The parts of the brain on either side near the ears, which help with smell, sound, language, emotion, and short-term memory.
Thoracic: The part of the body between the neck and belly.
Tilt Table: A table that can lower or raise a person from standing to lying down or vice versa. Often used to diagnose fainting or balance issues.
Tracheostomy: An opening cut into the front of the throat to help with breathing.
Tracking, Visual: Visually following an object as it moves through space.
Tremor, Intention: Trembling or shaking of a part of the body when making a difficult or precise movement.
Tremor, Resting: A shaking of the limbs, even when a person is at rest.
Trunk Control: The ability to move the head, shoulders, and pelvis in and out of various postures or to simply keep them aligned.
Unilateral Neglect: Paying little or no attention to things on one side of the body. This usually occurs on the side opposite from the brain injury. In extreme cases, the patient may not bathe, dress, or acknowledge one side of the body.
Ventilator: Machine that helps an individual to breathe and gives oxygen to the body.
Verbal Apraxia: When a person loses some or all control of proper sequencing of the muscles used in speech (tongue, lips, jaw muscles, vocal cords). These muscles are not weak, but their control is defective. Speech is labored, characterized by sound reversals, additions, and word approximations.
Vestibular: Describes issues in the inner ear, which helps with balance and movements of the head.
Whiplash Injury: An injury to the neck from a violent back and forth movement of the head and neck such as in a rear end car collision. Such injuries sometimes cause brain damage.
Withdrawal: A response to physical danger or severe stress characterized by a state of apathy, lethargy, depression, and retreat into oneself.