• WordNet 3.6
    • n diphtheria acute contagious infection caused by the bacterium Corynebacterium diphtheriae; marked by the formation of a false membrane in the throat and other air passages causing difficulty in breathing
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: The Iditarod Dogsled Race got its name from Iditarod, a small mining village along the race's route. The race commemorates an emergency operation in 1925 to get medical supplies to Nome, Alaska following a diphtheria epidemic.
    • n diphtheria An infectious disease, characterized by the formation over the affected and inflamed parts of a firm whitish or grayish pellicle, or false membrane (which is removed with difficulty and leaves a raw surface), and by general prostration. It is not infrequently followed by more or less extended paralysis. The air-passages of the head are the most frequent seat of the diphtheritic membrane, although it may appear on other mucous surfaces and in wounds. The disease is very frequently fatal, and its ravages are extended by filth. Also diphtheritis.
    • n diphtheria Diphtheria is caused by a specific bacillus, called Bacillus diphtheriæ, or the Klebs-Loeffier bacillus, which usually can readily be detected in the exudate by microscopical methods. The search for this organism has become a routine measure in doubtful cases of inflammation of the upper air-passages, and often a positive diagnosis of such conditions can be made only in this way. The disease begins with swelling and redness of the throat, fever, and loss of strength. The false membrane appears early and may be confined to the tonsils or may spread to the mucous membrane of the nose, pharynx, or larynx. When the larynx is involved, the breathing becomes difficult, and suffocation may ensue. Formerly the only means of saving life in this complication was tracheotomy, but this has been almost entirely superseded by intubation. The disease may be followed by paralysis, by weakness of the heart, or by disease of the kidneys. Treatment, both curative and preventive, consists in the subcutaneous injection of diphtheria antitoxin — one of the earliest instances, and still the most effective instance, of serum therapy. See cut under Klebs-Loeffler *bacillus.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The Iditarod dog sled race - from Anchorage to Nome, Alaska - commemorates an emergency operation in 1925 to get medical supplies to Nome following a diphtheria epidemic.
    • n Diphtheria dif-thē′ri-a a throat disease in which the air-passages become covered and impeded with a leathery membrane, and a dangerous fever is present
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A coinage of 1859 from Gr. diphthera, leather.


In literature:

And then Bessie's mother told us that four of her brood had been laid low with malignant diphtheria.
"The Long Day" by Dorothy Richardson
You were ill, you know: diphtheria.
"Old Crow" by Alice Brown
The same thing has been suggested of diphtheria.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 6, Slice 3" by Various
Four out of every five children suffering from diphtheria or other throat or ear troubles are found to have from one to ten bad teeth.
"Health Lessons" by Alvin Davison
The commoner diseases which have been transmitted by milk are scarlet fever, typhoid, diphtheria, tuberculosis, sore throat epidemics.
"The Bacillus of Long Life" by Loudon Douglas
In 1882 the widely scattered rural membership was hampered by severe winters, bad roads, severe epidemics (diphtheria) and in 1888 Rev.
"A History of the Town of Fairfax" by Jeanne Johnson Rust
A father tied a split herring round his boy's throat for diphtheria.
"Grenfell: Knight-Errant of the North" by Fullerton Waldo
The party came from the Tournequin Bay section, where an epidemic of diphtheria was raging.
"When the Cock Crows" by Waldron Baily
One kind gives a man typhoid fever, and another diphtheria.
"Applied Physiology" by Frank Overton
In several cases, the diphtheria germ has actually been isolated from infected milk supplies.
"Outlines of dairy bacteriology" by H. L. Russell

In news:

Merck, MassBiologics, tetanus, diphtheria , vaccine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, distribution, pharmaceutical.
Long Ago Against Diphtheria , the Heroes Were Horses.
BTC hosts free tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis vaccine clinic Oct 16.
ATLANTA (AP) — Most people don't think about polio and diphtheria these days.
Most people probably aren't aware that Leonhard (Sepp) Seppala, who achieved fame during the 1925 diphtheria serum run to Nome and popularized the use of Siberian huskies in sled dog racing, lived at Chatanika for almost 20 years.
A century after his death from diphtheria at the age of 31, Georges Seurat remains a mystery.
Merck, MassBiologics, tetanus , diphtheria, vaccine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, distribution, pharmaceutical.
BTC hosts free tetanus , diphtheria and pertussis vaccine clinic Oct 16.
We vaccinate our children to prevent diseases that used to kill or paralyze like polio, diphtheria, measles, meningitis and whooping cough.
The immunization is intended to prevent diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus.
Diseases such as tuberculosis and diphtheria as well as harmful bacteria such as E.
Diphtheria-tetanus-whooping cough-polio-measles-mumps-rubella-hepatitis b-influenza-chicken pox-HIB rotavirus-hepatitis a-pneumococcal disease.
OGDEN — The Weber-Morgan Health Department has immunized more than 1,800 elementary school students and faculty members for influenza this year, and more than 300 have received a DPT (diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus) vaccine.
A medical worker administers a Tdap (Tetanus-Diphtheria- Pertussis ) vaccine.
A medical worker administers a Tdap (Tetanus-Diphtheria.