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1. an apparatus for drawing or forcing liquid or gas.
2. to draw or force liquids or gases.
blood pump a machine used to propel blood through the tubing of extracorporeal circulation devices.
breast pump a pump for taking milk from the breast.
calcium pump the mechanism of active transport of calcium (Ca2+) across a membrane, as of the sarcoplasmic reticulum of muscle cells, against a concentration gradient; the mechanism is driven by hydrolysis of ATP.
enteral feeding pump an infusion pump specifically designed for administration of a solution through a feeding tube.
insulin pump see insulin pump.
intra-aortic balloon pump see intra-aortic balloon pump.
muscle pump compression of veins by the contraction of skeletal muscles, forcing blood towards the heart against the flow of gravity; seen particularly in the deep veins of the lower limbs. Called also venous pump.
proton pump a system for transporting protons across cell membranes, often exchanging them for other positively charged ions.
sodium pump (sodium-potassium pump) the mechanism of active transport driven by the energy generated by Na+,K+-ATPase, by which sodium (Na+) is extruded from a cell and potassium (K+) is brought in, so as to maintain the low concentration of sodium and the high concentration of potassium within the cell with respect to the surrounding medium. A high concentration of intracellular potassium is necessary for vital processes such as protein biosynthesis, certain enzyme activities, and maintenance of the membrane potential of excitable cells. Called also Na+-K+ pump.
stomach pump see stomach pump.
venous pump muscle pump.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.


1. An apparatus for forcing a gas or liquid from or to any part.
2. Any mechanism for using metabolic energy to accomplish active transport of a substance.
Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012


1. A machine or device for raising, compressing, or transferring fluids.
2. Physiology A molecular mechanism for the active transport of ions or molecules across a cell membrane.
v. pumped, pumping, pumps
1. To cause to flow by means of a pump or pumplike organ or device: Derricks pumped oil out of the ground. The heart pumps blood throughout the body.
2. To draw, deliver, or pour forth: a writer who pumped out a new novel every year.
3. To propel, eject, or insert: pumped new life into the economy.
4. To cause to move with an up-and-down or back-and-forth motion: a bicyclist pumping the pedals; a piston pumping a shaft.
5. To push or pull (a brake or lever, for instance) rapidly: a driver pumping the brakes.
6. To shoot (bullets, for example) at or into: a gunner pumping rounds at a target.
7. Physics To raise (atoms or molecules) to a higher energy level by exposing them to electromagnetic radiation at a resonant frequency.
8. Physiology To transport (ions or molecules) against a concentration gradient by the expenditure of chemically stored energy.
9. To invest (money) repeatedly or persistently in something.
10. To question closely or persistently: pump a witness for secret information.
11. Informal To promote or publicize vigorously: The company pumped its new product on its website.
1. To operate a pump.
2. To move gas or liquid with a pump or a pumplike organ or device.
3. To move up and down or back and forth in a vigorous manner: My legs were pumping as I ran up the stairs.
4. To flow in spurts: Blood was pumping from the wound.
5. Sports To fake a throw, pass, or shot by moving the arm or arms without releasing the ball.

pump′er n.
The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2007, 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Physiology A cell membrane-bound ion channel that maintains a gradient between one side and the other of H+, Cl-, etc.
Sports medicine Body-building A muscle that is well larger than normal, a result of aggressive exercise; pumped muscles have greater definition and the vessels are squeezed to the surface
Therapeutics A device used to deliver a precise amount of medication at a specific rate
Vox populi A device, structure or other artifice that causes a fluid or specific molecules to flow in a designated direction
Segen's Medical Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved.


Therapeutics A device used to deliver a precise amount of medication at a specific rate. See Implantable pump, Implantable insulin pump, Infusion pump, Insulin pump Vox populi A device, structure or other artifice that causes a fluid or specific molecules to flow in a designated direction. See Breast pump, Colleague 3 infusion pump, Intra-aortic balloon pump, Lymphatic pump, Mechanical infusion pump, Proton pump.
McGraw-Hill Concise Dictionary of Modern Medicine. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


1. An apparatus for forcing a gas or liquid from or to any part.
2. Any mechanism for using metabolic energy to accomplish active transport of a substance.
Medical Dictionary for the Health Professions and Nursing © Farlex 2012


1. An apparatus that transfers fluids or gases by pressure or suction.
2. To force air or fluid along a certain pathway, as the heart does to blood.

air pump

A device for forcing air in or out of a chamber.

blood pump

1. A device for pumping blood. It is attached to an extracorporeal circulation system.
2. A compression sleeve placed about a plastic transfusion bag.

breast pump

An apparatus for expressing milk from the human breast.

efflux pump

A cell membrane protein channel that selectively admits or excludes chemicals from the cytoplasm. In some bacteria efflux pumps prevent their cells from accumulating antibiotics, contributing to drug resistance.

electronic implantable infusion pump

Abbreviation: EIIP
A type of infusion pump inserted in the body. The pump, which may be programmable or nonprogrammable, is placed in a subcutaneous pocket and is connected to a dedicated catheter leading to the appropriate compartment or site.

infusion pump

A pump to administer fluids into an artery, vein, or enteral tube, beneficial in overcoming arterial resistance, controlling the rate of the fluid and drug administration, or administering thick solutions. The pump can be programmed to set the rate of administration depending on the patient's needs. See: ; electronic infusion device Synonym: intravenous infusion pump See: Infusion Pump
Enlarge picture

insulin pump

A small battery-driven pump that delivers insulin subcutaneously into the abdominal wall. The pump can be programmed to deliver varying doses of insulin as a patient's need for insulin changes during the day (e.g., before exercise or meals, when physical or psychological levels of stress change).
See: illustration

intra-aortic balloon pump

Intra-aortic balloon counterpulsation.

intravenous infusion pump

Infusion pump.

lymphedema pump

A pneumatic compression device for application to an edematous limb. It works best when combined with elevation of the limb and manual massage. The device, which may be single-chambered or multichambered, is designed to provide calibrated, sequential pressure to the extremity. This action “milks” edema fluid from the extremity. It is essential that the device be used in the early phase of the development of lymphedema. If the affected lymph vessels develop fibrotic changes (i.e., scar tissue), then pneumatic compression devices are of questionable benefit.

proton pump

An enzyme located in the parietal cell of the stomach that excretes hydrogen ions in exchange for potassium ions. The formal name of the proton pump is hydrogen/potassium adenosine triphosphate (H+/K+ATPase).

Patient care

Gastric acids produced by the proton pump aid chemical digestion of foods. Some diseases and conditions are worsened by acid in the stomach (e.g., peptic ulcers, acid reflux disease). Drugs that inhibit the proton pump (proton pump inhibitors such as omeprazole) are used to treat these illnesses.

respiratory pump

Those abdominal and thoracic structures that contribute to the expansion and contraction of the lungs. Movement of the chest and abdomen alters central pressures during inspiration and expiration. During inspiration, decreases in intrathoracic pressure draw air into the trachea, bronchi, and lungs and draw blood into the vena cava and right atrium of the heart. During expiration, intrathoracic pressures rise, and air is forced out of the lungs.

sodium pump

The active transport mechanism that moves sodium ions across a membrane to their area of greater concentration. In neurons and muscle cells, this is outside the cell. In many cells, the sodium pump is linked with the potassium pump that transports potassium ions into the cell, also against a concentration gradient, and may be called the sodium-potassium pump. In neurons and muscle fibers, this pump maintains the polarization of the membrane.
See: Sodium-Potassium Pump

smart pump

A programmable infusion device used to control and administer intravenous drugs and limit medication administration errors. Its software may include some or all of the following features: infusion rate programming; dosing limit lockout features; configurations for specific hospital areas (pediatric dosing versus adult or intensive care unit dosing); surgical or anesthetic drug libraries; controls for patient-controlled analgesia; and alert features (alarms or messages that notify users of possible medication errors).

stomach pump

A colloquial term for gastric lavage.

thoracic pump

The negative pressure in the chest during inspiration that pulls venous blood into the vena cava and right side of the heart so that it can circulate to the lungs.

venous plexus foot pump

A device that alternates between applying pressure and no pressure on the sole of the foot. The change in pressure allows venous blood vessels to alternately fill and then empty, thus imitating the effects of walking on the veins of the lower extremities. The pump is used to prevent deep vein thromboses (DVTs) in patients at high risk because of a previous history of DVTs, hypercoagulable states, or prolonged bedrest.
Medical Dictionary, © 2009 Farlex and Partners


1. Apparatus for forcing gas or liquid from or to any part.
2. Any mechanism for using metabolic energy to accomplish active transport of a substance.
Medical Dictionary for the Dental Professions © Farlex 2012
References in periodicals archive ?
1 concern most Black women have about pumping iron, experts say, is looking masculine.
Pumping Iron director George Butler told ABC the Hitler quotes needed to be seen in context to be understood.
ABC News and The New York Times reported on statements attributed to the action star during the filming of the bodybuilding documentary Pumping Iron. He was said to have told an interviewer that he admired Hitler's rise to power and wished he could have experienced the thrill Hitler must have had in speaking to huge audiences who agreed with everything he said.
Questioned in some circles for its air of manipulated drama, "Pumping Iron" trained focus on Mr.
PUMPING IRON: Manager Fred Furner with gym users (from left) Ann Clarke, Jill Atkinson, Audrey Tsiotas and Adam Smith.
In one of the earlier editions, poor Peter Snow got tired toward the end of his first performance, but have the famous faces still in the running learned from his mistake and been pumping iron to keep their stamina up?
He's now able to work the family farm and has even started pumping iron at a local gym.
ABERDEEN trialist Porarinn Kristjansson has been pumping iron in the gym in an attempt to convince manager Jimmy Calderwood to offer him a deal at Pittodrie.
George Butler said statements about Hitler reportedly made by Schwarzenegger during the filming of his 1975 documentary Pumping Iron, were 'not in context and not even strictly accurate'.
BETWEEN 2pm and 4pm on Friday, teenagers aged 14 and over will be pumping iron at Western Leisure Centre, Caerau, Cardiff.
"I've been working out loads, pumping iron and doing my Martial Arts, so I'll be ready for an action part."
ADE AKINBIYI (left) revealed how pumping iron almost ruined his career, writes STEVE BATES.