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That which produces an effect or condition; that by which a morbid change or disease is brought about.
[L. causa]


Etymology: L, causa
any process, substance, or organism that produces an effect or condition.


Law & medicine That which creates a condition or results in an effect. See Immediate cause of death, Necessary cause, Proximate cause, Sufficient cause, Underlying cause of death.


in diseases, an agent, event, condition or characteristic which plays an essential role in producing an occurrence of the disease. Because there is nowadays much less certainty about what actually establishes a disease state it is becoming more common to use terms such as disease determinants, causal association, causal relationship. koch's postulates are no longer the sole criterion used in establishing causality.

constitutional cause
an inherent characteristic of the patient. Usually a systemic defect, e.g. protoporphyria.
direct cause
there must be no known variable intervening between the suspect factor and the disease.
endogenous cause
the cause comes from within the patient. See also constitutional cause (above).
exogenous cause
the cause comes from outside the patient, e.g. a virus infection.
indirect cause
all causes other than the direct cause (see above).
host cause
see endogenous cause (above).
necessary cause
a factor which must be present to produce disease; the disease does not occur unless the factor was or is present.
precipitating cause
the trigger mechanism that initiates the commencement of the disease state.
predisposing cause
a mechanism that makes a patient more susceptible to the precipitating cause.
primary cause
the principal factor in causing the disease.
secondary cause
a factor that assists the primary cause. A cause of secondary importance.
specific cause
the single cause in a single cause-single disease relationship.
sufficient cause
a minimal set of conditions and events which inevitably produce disease.

Patient discussion about cause

Q. What Causes Dizziness? My husband is 55 years old. Lately he's been experiencing dizziness when he gets up from sitting for a while. What could be the cause?

A. We often feel dizzy when we are very tired, however real dizziness could indicate on a variety of problems: neurological, cardiovascular (for instance low blood pressure), nutritional (for example lack of glucose), dehydration and more. When someone complains about experiencing dizziness when getting up from sitting or lying down, the cause is usually a sudden drop in blood pressure (called orthostatic hypotension).

Q. What causes dizziness? I’m a 55 years old woman with 2 children, and in the last few weeks I have a feeling of dizziness every time I stand up from my bed. What cause this feeling? Does it mean I have some serious thing? I also have hypertension and diabetes that are usually stable.

A. If this feeling appears solely on standing up, it maybe related to drugs you take to treat your hypertension (It’s called “orthostatic hypertension”). You should report this to your doctor and maybe changing your treatment can make this feeling disappear.

Q. What causes asthma? My 5 year old son has trouble breathing sometimes after he runs around too much. My friend suggested he might have asthma. What causes this disease?

A. Another consideration is that food sensitivities can exacerbate asthma.

More discussions about cause
References in periodicals archive ?
Até aqui, a construção de causa no Direito trafega no bom seno; só a questionam filósofos obstinados em encontrar uma alternativa ética à vingança e à culpa e, para tanto, precisam contrariar o que parece ser tao evidente, dizenão que tudo depende de tudo e que vontade livre só foi inventada pelos homens para acusarem a si e aos outros - e se sabe que esses filósofos raramente sao populares.
Analizar la duracion y causas de retirada de todos los CVCt por complicaciones.
Os afogamentos foram a quinta causa de morte e contribuíram para a prematuridade das mortes entre adolescentes e adultos jovens do sexo masculino em várias zonas do perímetro urbano, com exceção da zona 1, que é a área central, apresenta boas condições socioeconômicas e melhores indicadores de infraestrutura urbana, tem mais de 10.
De los 31 pacientes encuestados, ingresaron 17 pacientes post-TR, siendo las causas: 5 por neumonia, 1 por fiebre, 2 por empeoramiento de la funcion renal y 9 por otras causas (diabetes, estenosis ureteral, infeccion virica .
Una disminucion en todas las causas y las tasas de ingreso de tipo cardiovascular durante el mismo periodo hizo que la proporcion de los ingresos relacionados con la infeccion aumentara.
Which is why, as a current practice, we do not allow any of the central institutions to give an Honoris Causa degree to the President," a ministry official said.
Na causa perturbada, a excepcionalidade esta localizada no porque da factualidade.
Thomas's meaning of causa sui is more limited: what is free does something for itself, but it does not make itself exist.
President Ivanov was awarded an honoris causa degree by the Dimitrie Cantemir University.
They cover the controversy of the generation of matter in Plotinus, the riddle of the partly undescended soul in Plotinus, the weakness of the soul in its relation to evil, two modes of reascent as a new sign of the impact of the quarrel on Plotinus' thought, Plotinian contemplative demiurgy, and God as CAUSA SUI in Plotinus and its possible Gnostic sources.
Bruce Babbitt, president and CEO of Chicanos Por La Causa, Justice of the Peace for west Phoenix, and a field representative for the Arizona Civil Rights Commission.