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Physician examining a patient.
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Medicine is the branch of health science and the sector of public life concerned with maintaining or restoring human health through the study, diagnosis and treatment of disease and injury. It is both an area of knowledge — a science of body systems, their diseases and treatment — and the applied practice — an art or craft — of that knowledge. However, medicine often refers more specifically to matters dealt with by physicians and surgeons.

The term "medicine" is sometimes used amongst medical professionals as shorthand for internal medicine. Veterinary medicine is the practice of health care in animal species other than human beings. Please see our medical disclaimer for cautions about Wikipedia's limitations.

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The heart sounds are the noises (sound) generated by the beating heart and the resultant flow of blood through it. This is also called a heartbeat. In cardiac auscultation, an examiner uses a stethoscope to listen for these sounds, which provide important information about the condition of the heart.

In healthy adults, there are two normal heart sounds often described as a lub and a dub (or dup), that occur in sequence with each heart beat. These are the first heart sound (S1) and second heart sound (S2), produced by the closure of the AV valves and semilunar valves respectively. In addition to these normal sounds, a variety of other sounds may be present including heart murmurs and adventitious sounds.

Heart murmurs are generated by turbulent flow of blood, which may occur inside or outside the heart. Murmurs may be physiological (benign) or pathological (abnormal). Abnormal murmurs can be caused by stenosis restricting the opening of a heart valve, causing turbulence as blood flows through it. Valve insufficiency (or regurgitation) allows backflow of blood when the incompetent valve is supposed to be closed. Different murmurs are audible in different parts of the cardiac cycle, depending on the cause of the murmur.


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Artificial hip in dog.JPG
The left hip of this dog (on the right side of the X-ray) has an artificial hip. The right hip has hip dysplasia with osteoarthritis and remodeling of the head of the femur.

Photo credit: Joelmills

Medicine Wikinews


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Did you know...

  • ...that during the "Age of Heroic Medicine" (1780-1850), educated professional physicians aggressively practiced "heroic medicine", including bloodletting (venesection), intestinal purging (calomel), vomiting (tartar emetic), profuse sweating (diaphoretics) and blistering? These medical treatments were well-intentioned, and often well-accepted by the medical community, but were actually harmful to the patient.


  • "… the best thing for being sad… is to learn something.” - Merlin to Arthur; The Sword in the Stone by T. H. White
  • "Health is like money, we never have a true idea of its value until we lose it.” - Josh Billings
  • "Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint.” - Mark Twain

Medicine topics

Andreas Vesalius: Base Of The Brain Anatomy

Caduceo Diseases and disorders

Star of life First aid & emergency medicine

Physician treating a patient. History of medicine

Ampoule prefilled with propofol Medical equipment

Bone marrow biopsy from the hip bone in a sheep Medical treatments

Renal Cell Carcinoma Category:Pathology

Aesculap-serpentine Pharmacology

ndreas Vesalius (portrait from the Fabrica). Physicians

Diagram of the human heart (cropped) Physiology


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MedlinePlus is a free Web site that provides consumer health information for patients, families, and health care providers. MedlinePlus brings together quality information from the United States National Library of Medicine, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), other U.S. government agencies, and health-related organizations. The U.S. National Library of Medicine produces and maintains MedlinePlus.

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