2016 Glossary - 51
include degenerative nerve diseases, tumors, myasthenia gravis, strokes, cleft palate, polio, cerebral
palsy, muscular dystrophy, and araxia. Also known as
palatal vault n: (1) the most superior and deepest portion of the palate; (2) the palatal curvature.
palatogram n: a record of the movement of the
tongue and soft palate created during function, usually speech.
palatopharyngeal incompetence n: dysfunction of
an anatomically intact soft palate resulting in inadequate palatopharyngeal closure. Palatopharyngeal incompetence is usually a result of neurologic or
muscular disease or trauma.
palatopharyngeal sphincter n: the muscular ring that
controls separation of the nasopharynx and oropharynx during swallowing and speech.
palatorrhaphy n: surgical reconstruction of a cleft palate.
palliate v: to alleviate symptoms or afford relief from a
disease or medical condition.
palliative adj: providing relief without effecting a cure.
palpate (palpated; palpating) v: to examine by manipulation or touch-palpation.
pancytopenia n: a significant reduction in blood cells
and platelets in circulation.
panoramic radiography n: a process of radiography
made on a single film by a continuous circumferential radiographic exposure of the maxillary and/or
mandibular dental arches.
papilla (pl papillae) n: a small, nipple-shaped elevation.
* circumvallate papilla: one of 8 or 10 protuberances from the dorsum of the tongue making a
V-shaped row anterior to and parallel with the sulcus terminalis. A circular trench having a slightly
raised outer wall surrounds each papilla. On the
borders of the papilla and on the opposed margins of the vellum are several taste buds.
* filiform papilla: extended conical protuberances
covering the dorsum of the tongue.
* foliate papilla: several parallel protuberances
arranged in transverse folds on the posterolateral
margins of the tongue.
* fungiform papilla: several, small, mushroom-shaped elevations on the dorsum of the
* incisive papilla: an elevation in the soft tissue
that conceals the foramen of the incisive or nasopalatine canal.
papilloma n: a benign epithelial, exophytic, pedunculated, cauliflower-like neoplasm. Viral etiology may
be the causative agent.
papule n: a small, superficial, circumscribed, hard elevation of the skin that does not contain pus.
parafunction n: abnormal or disordered function, as in
bruxism, clenching, or rocking of teeth when using
teeth as tools.
paresthesia n: morbid or perverted normal sensation,
such as tingling or burning. The abnormal sensation
is usually caused by injury to a nerve and is sometimes a complication after surgical procedures. Also
known as paresthesia.
partial dislocation n: a condition of the temporomandibular joint characterized by a displaced articular
disc and partial displacement of the condylar head
from its normal, healthy, resting position. As a result
of these pathologic changes, the joint function is
disrupted either unilaterally or bilaterally to varying
parulis n: a drainage tract seen in attached and/or mucosal ginigiva that is associated with an oral abscess
of odontogenic origin. Commonly known as a gum
passive adj: (1) latent, not active, inert; (2) resistant to
passive eruption n: see under eruption, dental.
patent adj: open, not obstructed: the specific unobstructed route in which a removable dental prosthesis (or the precementation stage of a fixed dental
prosthesis) may be removed.
pathogen n: any microorganism that is disease producing.
pathogenesis n: the mechanism that causes a given