Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal, Acronyms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.


adjective Referring to the intensity (severity) of a specific event, as in mild, moderate or severe.

The term “severe” is not synonymous with serious, as an event may be of acute distress but relatively minor medical significance (e.g., a severe headache). Seriousness serves as a guide for defining regulatory reporting obligations.


Nephrology The excretion of excessive (> 5 mg/dL) protein in the urine; normally, about 150 mg/day of protein is lost in the urine,13 is albumin,13 is Tamm-Horsfall glycoprotein; the rest is divided among actively secreted proteins–eg, retinol binding proteins, β2-microglobulin, Ig light chains and lysozyme; in absence of disease, large proteins are retained due to their size, while the smaller proteins are actively resorbed; proteinuria is most often caused by kidney disease, due to glomerular defects, and defective renal tubular resorption, and most often detected by screening with reagent strip–dipstick. See Functional proteinuria, Overflow proteinuria.
Proteinuria, severity
Severe ≥ 1.0 g/dL, due to glomerulonephritis, nephrotic syndrome, lupus nephritis, amyloidosis
Moderate ≥ 0.2 g/dL, ≤ 1.0 g/dL, due to CHF, drugs, acute infections, myeloma, chemical toxins
Mild 0.05-0.2 g/dL, due to polycystic kidneys, pyelonephritis, renal tubular defects
Proteinuria, patterns
Glomerular pattern Due to a loss of fixed negative charge on the glomerular capillary wall, allowing albumin and other large (≥ 68 kD) molecules to leak into Bowman's space–eg, in glomerulonephritis and nephrotic syndrome Lab ↓ albumin, antithrombin, transferrin, prealbumin, α1-acid glycoprotein, α1-antitrypsin
Hemodynamic pattern Due to rheostatic changes in the body, causing a loss of 20 to 68 kD molecules, seen in transient proteinuria, CHF, fever, seizures, excess exercise.
Overflow pattern Due to tissue/cell destruction that overwhelms renal capacity to excrete certain proteins–eg, Bence-Jones proteinuria and myoglobinuria
Tubular pattern Due to renal tubular dysfunction with loss of normally filtered low molecular weight (≤ 40 kD) molecules Lab ↓ β2-microglobulin and lysozyme–eg, Fanconi syndrome, Wilson's disease, interstitial nephritis, antibiotic-induced injury and heavy metal intoxication  


a clinical qualifier that describes a disease that is so severe that it dominates all other activities.

severe combined immune deficiency disease (SCID) (syndrome)
References in classic literature ?
But the struggle almost invariably will be most severe between the individuals of the same species, for they frequent the same districts, require the same food, and are exposed to the same dangers.
As species of the same genus have usually, though by no means invariably, some similarity in habits and constitution, and always in structure, the struggle will generally be more severe between species of the same genus, when they come into competition with each other, than between species of distinct genera.
To write within such severe rules as these is as impossible as to live up to some splenetic opinions: and if we judge according to the sentiments of some critics, and of some Christians, no author will be saved in this world, and no man in the next.
William Baker of the University of Wyoming compared records of recent severe fires across 63 million acres of dry forests, about 20% of total conifer forest area in the western USA, with data on severe fires before A.
For pregnant women, certain infectious diseases, such as influenza and varicella, may have a more severe clinical course, increased complication rate, and higher case-fatality rate.
A quarter of the GAIT participants started the study with moderate to severe pain in their knees, pain that "generally worsens a person's quality of life," explains the study leader, Daniel Clegg of the University of Utah School of Medicine in Salt Lake City.
In December 2004, the US FDA approved Prialt for the management of severe, chronic pain in patients who require intrathecal analgesia.
Holgate, a professor in the Infection, Inflammation, and Repair Division of Southampton General Hospital in the United Kingdom, and other researchers noticed that severe asthma was actually associated with neutrophils, another type of white blood cell that is associated with Th1 diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis.
Their latest book, A Working Life for People with Severe Mental Illness, represents a milestone in the understanding of what constitutes effective vocational planning and outcomes for people with severe mental illness.
As measured on a standard scale, 31% of women had symptoms of depression-12% mild, 14% moderate and 5% severe depression.
Cell damage, either by microbial toxins or injury, sets off the immune reaction that leads to severe sepsis.
A tornado warning accompanied the severe thunderstorm threat.

Full browser ?