8.0 Glossary

Bone Formation

A mass of bone tissue, usually of woven bone, formed in response to a need to support the bone or joint, e.g. after a fracture.
Projections or spicules of bone at sites of tendinous or ligamentous attachment.
The unification of two or more bones into a single entity by the growth of new bone across a joint.
Increased Density
Bone density is the amount of bone tissue in a certain volume of bone. Increased density indicates that this level is higher than is normal for bones from that site, something usually indicated by the bone appearing heavier and/or thicker than normal.
A small, discrete mass of bone tissue.
A small abnormal bony outgrowth or protuberance around the joint margin.
The reaction of the periosteal layer to form new bone in response to some pathological condition.

Bone Destruction

Articular Depression
A smooth circular or ovoid pit located on the articular surface of a bone.
Articular Groove
A smooth linear feature located on the articular surface of a bone.
A hollow area within a bone.
A cavity or sinus through which pus drains, such as in osteomyelitis (the inflammation of the marrow cavity of a bone).
An abnormal sac in the body, filled with a fluid or semi-solid and enclosed in a membrane.
A tumour of the bone marrow and related cells, which can produce multiple spongy growths of bone simultaneously in a number of sites.
Bone death resulting from the loss of blood supply to a bone or region of bone.
A decrease in bone matrix formation, used to describe thin bones in radiographs; a general term to describe a loss in the amount of bone.
An area of bone surface that possesses numerous small pits or pores created by pathological activity.
Pathological hardening or thickening of tissue, revealed as areas of dense white material on X-rays.

Alteration of Size

A bone, or part of a bone, that is significantly larger in size than is normal for that site.
A bone, or part of a bone, that is significantly smaller in size than is normal for that site.

Alteration of Shape

Articular Extension
The extension or widening of the articular surface of a bone.
Curvature of the bone shaft due to a pathological disorder or deficiency.
Removal of a bone or segment of bone from its normal position.
Expansion of Shaft
An abnormal increase in the dimensions of the bone shaft.
Thickening of Epiphyseal Plates
An abnormal increase in the dimensions of the bone around the junction of the epiphysis and metaphysis in which growth of a juvenile bone takes place.


Failure to form bone
The failure of bone, due to congenital or other reasons, to develop, thus leaving 'normal' features absent.
Degeneration of bone into a hard, polished, ivory-like mass, such as occurs at articular surfaces of bones in osteoarthritis.

Oral Pathology

Enamel Hypoplasia
Defects in the teeth observed as lines, pits or grooves on the enamel surface, that form as a result of arrests in the growth process.
The calcified remains of dental plaque, one of the commonest types of ectopic concretions affecting teeth.
Alveolar Recession
Reduction of the bone of the jaw section containing the tooth sockets, the alveolar ridge.
A collection of pus or other matter contained in a localised area of the body. Acute or chronic forms may occur.
Decay of teeth resulting in the softening, discoloration and destruction of the original material.
Exceeding the normal amount.
The lack of occlusion, or abnormal occlusion, existing between the teeth of the upper and lower jaws.


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Last updated: Wednesday 8th November 2006