Glossary of Terms


Term: Achilles tendon

Definition: Large and powerful tendon attached to the back of the heel.

Term: A-C joint

Definition: The articulation between the clavicle (collar bone) and the scapula (shoulder blade).

Term: Anterior cruciate ligament

Definition: Important ligament inside the knee joint essential to maintaining normal knee joint stability.

Term: Arthrodesis

Definition: Operation to fuse both sides of the joint together to stiffen the joint to relieve the pain of severe arthritis.

Term: Arthroplasty

Definition: Operation to replace a joint.

Term: Arthroscopy

Definition: Surgical procedure which employs a telescope to look into the joint to enable surgery to be done through small “keyhole” incisions.


Term: Bursa

Definition: Lubricating sack over a bony prominence


Term: Carpal tunnel

Definition: Canal created by wrist bones and associated ligaments in the palm through which the median nerve travels into the hand.

Term: Carpal tunnel syndrome

Definition: Compression of the median nerve in the carpal canal.

Term: Cartilage

Definition: The tough low friction surface which lines a joint.

Term: CMC joint

Definition: Carpo-metacarpal joint. The joint at the base of the thumb.

Term: Condroiten

Definition: Medication derived from shark cartilage and thought to improve normal cartilage healing.

Term: Cortisone

Definition: Naturally occurring and very powerful anti-inflammatory agent.


Term: Dislocation

Definition: Painful condition of a joint produced by injury or disease resulting in complete dissociation of the joint surfaces.

Term: DVT

Definition: Blood clot in the leg. May result in a pulmonary embolus.


Term: Epicondylitis

Definition: Painful condition of the medial or lateral epicondyle of the elbow.


Term: Text

Definition: Text


Term: Gluteal tendinopathy

Definition: Degenerative condition which affects the tendons important for driving the hip.


Term: Haemarthrosis

Definition: A joint filled with blood after injury.

Term: Hallux rigidus

Definition: A stiff and often painful big toe joint due to arthritis of the toe.

Term: Hallux valgus

Definition: A progressive deformity of the big toe possibly familial causing to toe to topple sideways which can disturb foot function and cause pain.

Term: Heel spur

Definition: A naturally occurring change in the shape of the bone related to normal aging processes and often mistakenly attributed as a cause of pain.


Term: Instability

Definition: The tendency of a joint to move in an unnatural way after ligament injury.

Term: Interposition arthroplasty

Definition: Joint replacement performed by placing as tendon into the joint to create a new bearing surface.

Term: Isometric strengthening

Definition: Powerful contraction of the muscle which does not result in change of length of the muscle (or motion of the adjacent joint).


Term: Lateral

Definition: Pertaining to structures away from the midline.

Term: Lateral epicondyle

Definition: Bony prominence on the outer aspect of the elbow.

Term: Ligament

Definition: Elastic structure crossing a joint which enables normal movement of the joint while maintaining the normal relative positions of the surfaces throughout the range of motion.


Term: Maltracking (patella)

Definition: Tendency of the knee cap to slide more to one side causing painful overload of the cartilage and predisposing to early wear.

Term: Medial

Definition: Pertaining to structures close to the midline.

Term: Medial epicondyle

Definition: Bony prominence on the inner aspect of the elbow (funny bone).

Term: Meniscus

Definition: Tough rubbery structure in either side of the knee which aids knee stability and protects cartilage from stress reducing wear and tear.

Term: MRI

Definition: Magnetic resonance imaging scan. Modern scanning technique specifically to look at the soft tissues not seen on an x-ray.


Term: Nerve conduction studies

Definition: Investigation of nerve function by studying electrical properties of the nerve and muscles.

Term: Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug

Definition: Class of medication particularly effective in dealing with the pain of arthritis


Term: Orthotic

Definition: Device placed in the shoe which alters the weight-bearing posture of the foot.

Term: Osteoarthrosis

Definition: Degenerative process leading to hip pain from wear and tear


Term: Palmaris longus

Definition:Small tendon in the forearm used for thumb joint replacement.


Definition: Unpleasant sensation otherwise known as pins and needles.

Term: Patella

Definition: Mobile bone at the front of the knee otherwise known as the knee cap.

Term: Plantar fascia

Definition: Tough tissue on the sole of the foot which maintains the structure of the arch of the foot.

Term: Plantar fasciitis

Definition: Painful condition of the plantar fascia due to degeneration but not inflammation.

Term: Prosthesis

Definition: Artificial joint used to replace an arthritic joint.

Term: Pulmonary embolus

Definition: Dangerous condition caused by blood clots entering the lung circulation.


Term: Quadraceps

Definition: Very powerful muscle occupying the front of the thigh which extends the knee.


Term: Rheumatoid arthritis

Definition: Chronic and disabling inflammatory condition of joint causing arthritis

Term: R.I.C.E.

Definition: Rest Ice Compression Elevation

Term: Rotator cuff

Definition: A group of tendons and muscles responsible for elevating the shoulder.


Term: Sciatic nerve

Definition: The large nerve from your spine to your foot which runs directly behind the hip joint and supplies muscle power and sensation to the leg.

Term: Sequential calf compression

Definition: Clever device used on the legs after major lower limb surgery to promote circulation and reduce the risk of blood clot formation.

Term: Steindler release

Definition: Operation for plantar fasciitis which preserves foot mechanics.

Term: Supraspinatus

Definition: Important muscle of the rotator cuff.

Term: Surgical approach

Definition: The anatomical route through your tissues used to gain access to the hip joint.

Term: Synovitis

Definition: Inflammation of the lining of the joint responsible for production of lubricating fluid.

Term: Synovium

Definition: The lining of the joint responsible for production of lubricating fluid.


Term: Tibial tubercle

Definition: Bony prominence over the front of the knee to which the patella tendon attaches.

Term: Trochanteric bursitis

Definition: Old term which has been used to attribute the pain of hip tendon pathology to the bursa over the trochanter.

Term: Trochanter

Definition: Bony prominence over the lateral aspect of the upper thigh.


Term: Ulnar nerve

Definition: Important nerve on the medial side of the elbow responsible for much of the hand movements and sensation of the little and ring fingers.

Term: Ultrasound

Definition: Imaging investigation which employs very high frequency sound to create an image of soft tissues.