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1. something that makes a distinction between two differing items.
2. the additional financial reward given to health care providers for working on a particular shift or in a particular unit.
3. in Canadian hospitals, the extra charge for a semiprivate or private room over the basic room rate subsidized by the provincial health plan.


Relating to, or characterized by, a difference; distinguishing.
[L. differo, to carry apart, differ, fr. dis, apart]


pertaining to or creating a difference.


Differential diagnosis, see there.


A blood cell count in which the percentages of cell types are calculated as well as the total number of cells.


exhibiting or depending on a difference.

differential absorption
see differential absorption.
differential cell count
see differential count.
differential diagnosis
the differences between diseases in terms of clinical signs and epidemiological parameters; used as a basis for selecting as a diagnosis the one with the best fit to those seen in the subject.
differential leukocyte count
see differential count.
differential milk cell counts
count of cells in a milk sample including individual counts of somatic cells and individual leukocyte types.
differential thromboplastin time
used in differentiating the cause of hemophilia. Reagents containing either factor VIII or factor IX are added in the partial thromboplastin time test to demonstrate which factor corrects the prolonged clotting time.

Patient discussion about differential

Q. How do you differentiate between fluorosis and caries? Both appear as white spots on the teeth, so clinically how do you differentiate between them? I know it has something to do with their appearance while wet and dry, but I am not sure what? please help me I can't find this in any book.

A. Only mild fluorosis is seen as white stop lesion on the tooth. It usually comes with brown spots. Look for them. Another method is trying to stick a dental explorer into it (not the Microsoft one- it’ll only be a portal for viruses..) and because caries is demineralized area it will feel kind of sticky. But I wouldn’t do that…it can harm the teeth. Another way is by an x ray. Fluorosis- you will see it as a whiter spot. Caries- a more translucent spot.

Q. Differentiate Wheezing & Asthma My sister who is 29 years old is suffering from wheezing for the past 7 years. Its not a genetic problem. Some times she uses inhaler for temporary recovery. She tried English medicine, homeo and other treatments. Is it an Asthma? I find very difficult in seeing her struggle when she find hard to breathe. Please help to make her free out of this struggle.

A. i see what scares you...it's frustrating to see your loved ones suffer and you cannot help. if she is has an inhaler- that mean she has been to the Dr. and he prescribed her some kind of medicine. without giving a diagnose first...?

Q. how can i differentiate between normal stomach ache and an Appendicitis? I've been having a strange sharp pain in my stomach lately and a friend of mine told me it could be Appendicitis.

A. When you have Appendicitis, there should be a sharp pain on the right lower Abdomen. but you mustn't forget that Appendicitis is an inflammation. which means you'll have a fever some time in the near future, and it always get worse. not like other Abdominal pains. you'll vomit probably. i had my Appendix removed 2 years ago. don't worry, it's not too bad ;).

More discussions about differential
References in periodicals archive ?
A limited-slip differential is a major upgrade from an open carrier in that it uses a clutch system to transfer some (but not all) torque to the wheel with the most traction when you encounter a loose or slippery surface.
While that is often true, the real culprit may be your differential type.
The overall and core inflation differentials fluctuate significantly around a moving trend.
Just as the differentials for actual and moving-average inflation fluctuate, so do forecasts of the differentials.
These checks should be done biannually or if a high side-to-side temperature differential is measured over 6 degrees F.
The taxpayer receives $8 ($18 - $10) less because of the advance payment due to the one-percent rate differential charged by the IRS from March 15, 1987, to March 15, 1994.
168 (1996), the interest rate differential between underpayments and overpayments cost the taxpayer almost $500,000.
As a group, the 100,000 to 250,000 circulation newspapers experienced a 16% differential increase, the highest rate of increase in all circulation categories, for an average differential of 91.
Eaton, the world's largest producer of automotive differentials and engine valves, is a leading provider of automotive engine air management and fuel economy systems.
Li Jin Dian, chairman of the board and president of Dandong Shuguang Axle commented, "The incorporation of Eaton's mechanical locking differentials into Shuguang's axles introduces a whole new line of axle products into China's rapidly growing SUV market.
Hardis said the plant will build approximately 70,000 carbon disc limited slip differentials in 1998 and up to 100,000 units by the year 2000.
Geographic salary differentials add a particular level of complexity to administering a compensation program for a large national employer with operations in a broad-ranging number of locations throughout the United States," said Mercer Managing Director and Compensation Consultant Linda Ison, who is based in Mercer's Louisville, Ky.

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