In anatomy, a process is a projection from a structure. The process of the mandible is the part of the lower jaw that projects forward. In a more general sense, a process is a series of actions or events that are part of a system or of a development, particularly one characterized by gradual changes that lead toward a particular result. For example, there is the process of growth. The word "process" comes from the Latin pro-, forward + ceder, to go = to go forward.
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1. In anatomy, a projection or outgrowth. SYN: processus [TA]. 2. A method or mode of action used in the attainment of a certain result. 3. An advance, progress, or method, as of a disease. See processus. 4. A pathologic condition or disease. 5. In dentistry, a series of operations that convert a wax pattern, such as that of a denture base, into a solid denture base of another material. See dental curing. [L. processus, an advance, progress, p., fr. pro-cedo, pp. -cessus, to go forward]
- A.B.C. p. purification of water or deodorization of sewage by a mixture of alum, blood, and charcoal.
- accessory p. of lumbar vertebra [TA] a small apophysis at the posterior part of the base of the transverse p. of each of the lumbar vertebrae. SYN: processus accessorius vertebrae lumbalis [TA], accessory tubercle.
- acromial p. SYN: acromion.
- agene p. bleaching of flour with nitrogen trichloride (prohibited in the United States).
- alar p. SYN: ala of crista galli.
- alveolar p. of maxilla [TA] the projecting ridge on the inferior surface of the body of the maxilla containing the tooth sockets; the term is also applied to the superior aspect of the body of the mandible, containing the tooth sockets of the lower jaw. SYN: alveolar body, alveolar bone (1), alveolar border (2), alveolar ridge, basal ridge (1), dental p., processus alveolaris maxillae.
- anterior clinoid p. [TA] the posteriorly directed projection that is the medial end of the sphenoidal ridge (lesser wing of sphenoid); it provides attachment for the free edge of the tentorium cerebelli. SYN: processus clinoideus anterior [TA].
- anterior p. of malleus [TA] a slender spur running anteriorly from the neck of the malleus toward the petrotympanic fissure. SYN: processus anterior mallei [TA], Folli p., follian p., long p. of malleus, processus gracilis, processus ravii, Rau p., Ravius p., slender p. of malleus.
- apical p. the dendritic p. extending from the apex of a pyramidal cell of the cerebral cortex toward the surface. SYN: apical dendrite.
- articular p. [TA] one of the bilateral small flat projections on the surfaces of the arches of the vertebrae, at the point where the pedicles and laminae join, forming the zygapophysial joint surfaces. SYN: processus articularis [TA], zygapophysis.
- ascending p. SYN: processus ascendens.
- auditory p. the roughened edge of the tympanic plate giving attachment to the cartilaginous portion of the external acoustic meatus.
- basilar p. SYN: basilar part of occipital bone.
- basilar p. of occipital bone SYN: basilar part of occipital bone.
- binary p. a random event with two exhaustive and mutually exclusive outcomes; a Bernoulli p..
- Budde p. a method of milk sterilization; to the fresh milk, hydrogen peroxide is added in the proportion of 15 mL of a 3% solution to 1 liter of milk, and the mixture is heated to 51° or 52°C (124°F) for 3 hours, by which time the peroxide is decomposed and the nascent oxygen acts as an efficient germicide; the milk is then rapidly cooled and put into sealed bottles.
- calcaneal p. of cuboid [TA] the p. projecting posteriorly from the plantar surface of the cuboid; it supports the anterior end of the calcaneus. SYN: processus calcaneus ossis cuboidei [TA].
- caudate p. [TA] a narrow band of hepatic tissue connecting the caudate and right lobes of the liver posterior to the porta hepatis. SYN: processus caudatus [TA].
- ciliary p. [TA] one of the radiating pigmented ridges, usually 70 in number, on the inner surface of the ciliary body, increasing in thickness as they advance from the orbiculus ciliaris to the external border of the iris; these, together with the folds (plicae) in the furrows between them, constitute the corona ciliaris. SYN: processus ciliaris [TA].
- Civinini p. SYN: pterygospinous p..
- clinoid p. [TA] one of three pairs of bony projections from the sphenoid bone; the anterior and posterior pairs of which surround the hypophysial fossa like bedposts. SYN: processus clinoideus [TA], clinoid (2).
- cochleariform p. SYN: processus cochleariformis.
- complex learning processes those processes that require the use of symbolic manipulations, as in reasoning.
- condylar p. of mandible [TA] the articular p. of the ramus of the mandible; it includes the head of the mandible, the neck of the mandible and pterygoid fovea. SYN: processus condylaris mandibulae [TA], condyloid p., mandibular condyle.
- condyloid p. SYN: condylar p. of mandible.
- conoid p. SYN: conoid tubercle (of clavicle).
- coracoid p. [TA] a long, curved projection resembling a flexed finger arising from the neck of the scapula overhanging the glenoid cavity; it gives attachment to the short head of the biceps, the coracobrachialis, and the pectoralis minor muscles, and the conoid and coracoacromial ligaments. SYN: processus coracoideus [TA].
- coronoid p. a sharp triangular projection from a bone. SYN: processus coronoideus.
- coronoid p. of the mandible [TA] the triangular anterior p. of the mandibular ramus, giving attachment to the temporal muscle. SYN: processus coronoideus mandibulae [TA].
- coronoid p. of the ulna [TA] a bracketlike projection from the anterior portion of the proximal extremity of the ulna; its anterior surface gives attachment to the brachialis, and its proximal surface enters into the formation of the trochlear notch. SYN: processus coronoideus ulnae [TA].
- costal p. [TA] an apophysis extending laterally from the transverse p. of a lumbar vertebra; it is the homolog of the rib. SYN: processus costalis [TA].
- dendritic p. SYN: dendrite (1).
- dental p. SYN: alveolar p. of maxilla.
- ensiform p. SYN: xiphoid p..
- ethmoidal p. of inferior nasal concha [TA] a projection of the inferior concha, situated behind the lacrimal p. and articulating with the uncinate p. of the ethmoid. SYN: processus ethmoidalis conchae nasalis inferioris [TA].
- falciform p. of sacrotuberous ligament [TA] a continuation of the inner border of the sacrotuberous ligament upward and forward on the inner aspect of the ramus of the ischium. SYN: processus falciformis ligamenti sacrotuberalis [TA], falciform ligament, ligamentum falciforme.
- Folli p. SYN: anterior p. of malleus.
- follian p. SYN: anterior p. of malleus.
- foot p. SYN: pedicel.
- frontal p. of maxilla [TA] the upward extension from the body of the maxilla, which articulates with the frontal bone. SYN: processus frontalis maxillae [TA], nasal p..
- frontal p. of zygomatic bone [TA] the p. of the zygomatic bone that extends upward to form the lateral margin of the orbit and articulates with the frontal bone and greater wing of the sphenoid bone. SYN: processus frontalis ossis zygomatici [TA], frontosphenoidal p..
- frontonasal p. SYN: frontonasal prominence.
- frontosphenoidal p. SYN: frontal p. of zygomatic bone.
- funicular p. the tunica vaginalis surrounding the spermatic cord.
- globular p. obsolete term for intermaxillary segment.
- hamular p. of lacrimal bone SYN: lacrimal hamulus.
- hamular p. of sphenoid bone SYN: pterygoid hamulus.
- head p. the primordium for the notochord. SEE ALSO: notochordal p..
- inferior articular p. [TA] one of the articular processes on the inferior surface of the vertebral arch. SYN: zygapophysis inferior [TA].
- Ingrassia p. SYN: lesser wing of sphenoid (bone).
- intrajugular p. [TA] a small, pointed p. of bone extending from the middle of the jugular notch in both the occipital and the temporal bones, the two being joined by a ligament and dividing the jugular foramen into two portions. SYN: processus intrajugularis [TA].
- jugular p. of occipital bone [TA] a short p. jutting out from the posterior part of the condyle of the occipital bone, its anterior border forming the posterior boundary of the jugular foramen. SYN: processus jugularis ossis occipitalis [TA].
- lacrimal p. of inferior nasal concha [TA] a projection from the anterior edge of the inferior concha that articulates with the lower border of the lacrimal bone. SYN: processus lacrimalis conchae nasalis inferioris [TA].
- lateral p. of calcaneal tuberosity [TA] the lateral projection from the posterior part of the calcaneus. SYN: processus lateralis tuberis calcanei [TA].
- lateral p. of malleus [TA] a short projection from the base of the manubrium of the malleus, attached firmly to the drum membrane. SYN: processus lateralis mallei [TA], processus brevis, short p. of malleus, tuberculum mallei.
- lateral nasal p. SYN: lateral nasal prominence.
- lateral p. of septal nasal cartilage [TA] the flat p. of the septal nasal cartilage located in the lateral wall of the nose above the alar cartilage. SYN: cartilago nasi lateralis, lateral cartilage of nose.
- lateral p. of talus [TA] a projection on the lateral side of the talus below the malleolar articular surface. SYN: processus lateralis tali [TA].
- Lenhossék processes short processes (“aborted axons”) possessed by some ganglion cells.
- lenticular p. of incus [TA] a knob at the tip of the long limb of the incus that articulates with the stapes. SYN: processus lenticularis incudis [TA], lenticular apophysis, lenticular bone, orbicular bone, orbicular p., orbiculare, os orbiculare, os sylvii.
- long p. of malleus SYN: anterior p. of malleus.
- malar p. SYN: zygomatic p. of maxilla.
- mammillary p. of lumbar vertebra [TA] a small apophysis or tubercle on the dorsal margin of the superior articular p. of each of the lumbar vertebrae and usually of the twelfth thoracic vertebra. SYN: processus mammillaris vertebrae lumbalis [TA], mammillary tubercle, metapophysis.
- mandibular p. SYN: mandibular arch.
- Markov p. a stochastic p. such that the conditional probability distribution for the state at any future instant, given the present state, is unaffected by any additional knowledge of the past history of the system.
- mastoid p. [TA] the nipplelike projection of the petrous part of the temporal bone. SYN: processus mastoideus [TA], mastoid bone, temporal apophysis.
- mastoid p. of petrous part of temporal bone [TA] the portion of the petrous part of the temporal bone bearing the mastoid p.. SYN: processus mastoideus partis petrosae ossis temporalis [TA], mastoid part of the temporal bone, pars mastoidea ossis temporalis.
- maxillary p. of embryo the proximal part of the first pharyngeal arch that develops in most of the upper jaw.
- maxillary p. of inferior nasal concha [TA] a thin plate of irregular form projecting from the middle of the upper border of the inferior concha, articulating with the maxilla bone and partly closing the orifice of the maxillary sinus. SYN: processus maxillaris conchae nasalis inferioris [TA].
- medial p. of calcaneal tuberosity [TA] the medial projection from the posterior part of the calcaneus. SYN: processus medialis tuberis calcanei [TA].
- medial nasal p. SYN: medial nasal prominence.
- mental p. SYN: mental protuberance.
- middle clinoid p. [TA] an inconstant, small spur of bone on the body of the sphenoid, posterolateral to (and occasionally continuous with) the tuberculum sellae; it is around this point that the internal carotid artery makes a 180° turn, changing direction from anterior to posterior to join the cerebral arterial circle. SYN: processus clinoideus medius [TA].
- muscular p. of arytenoid cartilage [TA] the blunt lateral projection of the arytenoid cartilage giving attachment to the lateral and posterior cricoarytenoid muscles of the larynx. SYN: processus muscularis cartilaginis arytenoideae [TA].
- nasal p. SYN: frontal p. of maxilla.
- notochordal p. in the embryo, a midline column of cells that are rostral to the primitive node and form the notochord. SEE ALSO: head p..
- odontoblastic p. the extension of the odontoblast that lies within the dentinal tubule; application of stimuli to dentin may cause aspiration of odontoblast contents into the p..
- odontoid p. SYN: dens (2).
- odontoid p. of epistropheus SYN: dens (2).
- olecranon p. SYN: olecranon.
- orbicular p. SYN: lenticular p. of incus.
- orbital p. of palatine bone [TA] the anterior and larger of the two processes at the upper extremity of the vertical plate of the palatine bone, articulating with the maxilla, ethmoid, and sphenoid bones. SYN: processus orbitalis ossis palatini [TA].
- packing p. the method of placing denture base material in a flask for processing.
- palatine p. of maxilla [TA] medially directed shelves from the maxillae that, with the horizontal plate of the palatine bone, form the bony palate. SYN: processus palatinus ossis maxillae [TA].
- papillary p. of caudate lobe of liver [TA] the left lower angle of the caudate lobe of the liver, opposite the caudate p.. SYN: processus papillaris lobi caudati hepatis [TA].
- paramastoid p. [TA] an occasional p. of bone extending downward from the jugular p. of the occipital bone in humans. SYN: processus paramastoideus [TA], paroccipital p..
- posterior clinoid p. [TA] the sharp superolateral corners of the dorsum sella that provide attachment for connective tissue fibers that radiate within the tentorium cerebelli. SYN: processus clinoideus posterior [TA].
- posterior p. of septal cartilage [TA] the tapering extension of the septal cartilage that lies between the perpendicular plate of the ethmoid and the vomer. SYN: processus posterior cartilaginis septi nasi [TA], sphenoid p. of septal nasal cartilage [TA], processus sphenoidalis cartilaginis septi nasi.
- posterior p. of talus [TA] a projection of the talus bearing medial and lateral tubercles; it is posterior and inferior to the trochlea. SYN: processus posterior tali [TA], Stieda p..
- primary p. in psychoanalysis, the mental p. directly related to the functions of the primitive life forces associated with the id and characteristic of unconscious mental activity; marked by unorganized, illogical thinking and by the tendency to seek immediate discharge and gratification of instinctual demands. Cf.:secondary p..
- progressive processes processes that continue after they no longer serve the needs of the organism, and after cessation of the stimulus that evoked the p..
- pterygoid p. of sphenoid bone [TA] a long p. extending downward from the junction of the body and greater wing of the sphenoid bone on either side; it is formed of two plates (lateral and medial), united anteriorly but separated below to form the pterygoid notch; the pterygoid fossa is formed by the divergence of these two plates posteriorly. SYN: processus pterygoideus ossis sphenoidalis [TA], os pterygoideum.
- pterygospinous p. [TA] a sharp projection from the posterior edge of the lateral pterygoid plate of the sphenoid bone. SYN: processus pterygospinosus [TA], Civinini p..
- pyramidal p. of palatine bone [TA] the portion of the palatine bone passing lateral and posterior from the angle formed by the vertical and horizontal plates. SYN: processus pyramidalis ossis palatini [TA].
- Rau p. SYN: anterior p. of malleus.
- Ravius p. SYN: anterior p. of malleus.
- secondary p. in psychoanalysis, the mental p. directly related to the learned and acquired functions of the ego and characteristic of conscious and preconscious mental activities; marked by logical thinking and by the tendency to delay gratification by regulation of the discharge of instinctual demands. Cf.:primary p..
- sheath p. of sphenoid bone SYN: vaginal p. of sphenoid bone.
- short p. of malleus SYN: lateral p. of malleus.
- slender p. of malleus SYN: anterior p. of malleus.
- sphenoid p. SYN: sphenoidal p. of palatine bone.
- sphenoidal p. of palatine bone [TA] the posterior and smaller of the two processes at the extremity of the vertical plate of the palatine bone. SYN: processus sphenoidalis ossis palatini [TA], sphenoid p..
- spinous p. of sphenoid SYN: spine of sphenoid bone.
- spinous p. of tibia SYN: intercondylar eminence.
- spinous p. of vertebra [TA] the dorsal projection from the center of a vertebral arch. SYN: processus spinosus vertebrae [TA].
- Stieda p. SYN: posterior p. of talus.
- stochastic p. a p. that incorporates some element of randomness. [G. stochastikos, pertaining to guessing, fr. stochazomai, to guess]
- styloid p. of fibula SYN: apex of head of fibula.
- styloid p. of radius [TA] a thick, pointed, palpable projection on the lateral side of the distal extremity of the radius. SYN: processus styloideus radii [TA].
- styloid p. of temporal bone [TA] a slender needlelike pointed projection running downward and slightly forward from the base of the inferior surface of the petrous portion of the temporal bone where it joins the tympanic portion; it gives attachment to the styloglossus, stylohyoid, and stylopharyngeus muscles and the stylohyoid and stylomandibular ligaments. SYN: processus styloideus ossis temporalis [TA].
- styloid p. of third metacarpal bone [TA] a pointed projection from the dorsolateral angle of the base of the third metacarpal bone; it sometimes exists as a separate ossicle. SYN: processus styloideus ossis metacarpalis III [TA].
- styloid p. of ulna [TA] a cylindrical, pointed palpable projection from the medial and posterior aspect of the head of the ulna, to the tip of which is attached the ulnar collateral ligament of the wrist. SYN: processus styloideus ulnae [TA].
- superior articular p. [TA] one of the articular processes on the superior surface of the vertebral arch. SYN: zygapophysis superior [TA], diapophysis.
- superior articular p. of sacrum [TA] the large p. on each side of the sacrum posteriorly that articulates with the corresponding inferior articular p. of the fifth lumbar vertebra. SYN: processus articularis superior ossis sacri [TA].
- supracondylar p. of humerus [TA] an occasional spine projecting from the anteromedial surface of the humerus about 5 cm above the medial epicondyle to which it is joined by a fibrous band. The supracondylar foramen thus formed transmits the brachial artery and median nerve. SYN: processus supraepicondylaris humeri [TA], supraepicondylar p..
- temporal p. of zygomatic bone [TA] the posterior projection of the zygomatic bone articulating with the zygomatic p. of the temporal bone to form the zygomatic arch. SYN: processus temporalis ossis zygomatici [TA].
- Tomes processes apical processes of ameloblasts.
- transverse p. of vertebra [TA] a bony protrusion on either side of the arch of a vertebra, from the junction of the lamina and pedicle, which functions as a lever for attached muscles. SYN: processus transversus vertebrae [TA].
- trochlear p. SYN: fibular trochlea of calcaneus.
- uncinate p. of cervical vertebra [TA] raised lateral margins of the superior surface of the cervical vertebrae; with aging they often extend superiorly sufficient to contact the superior vertebra, forming an uncovertebral joint. SYN: processus uncinatus vertebrae cervicalis [TA].
- uncinate p. of ethmoid bone [TA] a sickle-shaped p. of bone on the medial wall of the ethmoidal labyrinth below the middle concha; it articulates with the ethmoidal p. of the inferior concha and partly closes the orifice of the maxillary sinus. SYN: processus uncinatus ossis ethmoidalis [TA].
- uncinate p. of first thoracic vertebra [TA] raised lateral edge of the superior surface. SEE ALSO: uncinate p. of cervical vertebra. SYN: processus uncinatus vertebrae thoracicae primae [TA].
- uncinate p. of pancreas [TA] a portion of the head of the pancreas that hooks around posterior to the superior mesenteric vessels, sometimes into the “nutcracker” formed by the superior mesenteric artery and abdominal aorta. SYN: processus uncinatus pancreatis [TA], lesser pancreas, pancreas minus, small pancreas, uncinate pancreas, unciform pancreas, Willis pancreas, Winslow pancreas.
- vaginal p. SYN: sheath of styloid p..
- vaginal p. of peritoneum SYN: processus vaginalis of peritoneum.
- vaginal p. of sphenoid bone [TA] a thin lamina of bone that extends medially under the body of the sphenoid bone from the medial lamina of the pterygoid p.; it articulates with the vomer and the palatine bone. SYN: processus vaginalis ossis sphenoidalis [TA], sheath p. of sphenoid bone.
- vaginal p. of testis SYN: processus vaginalis of peritoneum.
- vermiform p. SYN: appendix (2).
- vocal p. SYN: vocal p. of arytenoid cartilage.
- vocal p. of arytenoid cartilage [TA] the lower end of the anterior margin of the arytenoid cartilage to which the vocal cord is attached. SYN: processus vocalis cartilaginis arytenoideae [TA], vocal p..
- xiphoid p. [TA] the cartilage at the lower end of the sternum. SYN: processus xiphoideus [TA], ensiform p., ensisternum, metasternum, mucro sterni, xiphisternum, xiphoid cartilage.
- zygomatic p. of frontal bone [TA] the massive projection of the frontal bone that joins the zygomatic bone to form the lateral margin of the orbit. SYN: processus zygomaticus ossis frontalis [TA].
- zygomatic p. of maxilla [TA] the rough projection from the maxilla that articulates with the zygomatic bone. SYN: processus zygomaticus maxillae [TA], malar p..
- zygomatic p. of temporal bone [TA] the anterior p. of the temporal bone that articulates with the temporal p. of the zygomatic bone to form the zygomatic arch. SYN: processus zygomaticus ossis temporalis [TA].

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pro·cess 'prä, 'prōs-, -əs n
1 a) a natural progressively continuing operation or development marked by a series of gradual changes that succeed one another in a relatively fixed way and lead toward a particular result or end <the \process of growth> <the \process of digestion>
b) a natural continuing activity or function <such life \processes as breathing and the circulation of the blood>
2) a prominent or projecting part of an organism or organic structure <a bone \process> <a nerve cell \process>

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(in anatomy) a thin prominence or protuberance; for example, any of the processes of a vertebra.

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proc·ess (prosґəs) (proґsəs) [L. processus] 1. a prominence or projection, as of bone; for names of specific anatomic structures not found here, see official terms under processus. 2. a series of operations, events, or steps leading to the achievement of a specific result. 3. to subject to such a series in order to produce desired changes in the original material or achieve some other result.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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