Apoplexy is an old-fashioned medical term, generally used interchangeably with cerebrovascular accident (CVA or stroke) but having other meanings as well.
The use of apoplexy for the term stroke is derived from the fact that many patients lose consciousness during the acute stage of the vascular compromise (either through bleeding or ischemia). It is not to be confused with cataplexy (an attack of the neurological syndrome narcolepsy).
Occasionally, the term 'apoplexy' is used to describe hemorrhaging within other organs; in such usage, however, it is coupled with an adjective describing the site of the bleeding. For example, bleeding within the kidneys can be called renal apoplexy, or bleeding within the pituitary gland can be called pituitary apoplexy.
It is also used colloquially, particularly in its adjective form apoplectic, to mean furious or enraged.
Last updated: 02-16-2005 08:57:43
Last updated: 05-03-2005 02:30:17