V

Varices (esophageal): Swollen veins at the bottom of the esophagus, near the stomach—a common condition caused by increased pressure in the liver. Varices can ulcerate and bleed.


Vascularized Composite Allograft (VCA): A transplant that is composed of several kinds of tissue such as skin, bone, muscles, blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissue, VCAs include hand, arm, or face transplants.

  • Vascularized: containing blood vessels or other fluid-bearing vessels or ducts.


  • Composite: made up of various parts or elements.


  • Allograft: a transplanted organ or tissue from one individual to another of the same species with a different genotype. For example, a transplant from one person to another, but not an identical twin, is an allograft.

Vascular: Referring to blood vessels and circulation.


Ventilator: A machine that forces air into the patient’s respiratory system when the patient is not able to breathe properly.


Virus: A group of tiny infectious organisms that can grow and reproduce themselves only while living within cells of the body. After reproduction, the new viruses look for new cells to enter.