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glossary - m

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Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA)  – the organisation that licences and regulates medicines in the UK. It makes sure that these products work and are safe to use.

Medicines use review - a review by a pharmacist which looks at your medicines (what you take, how you take it and how you are getting on with it).

Meninges – three layers of membranes that surround the brain. The condition Meningitis is caused by an infection in the meninges.

Menopause  - the stage in a woman's life when her body stops releasing eggs and she can no longer become pregnant.

Menstrual cycle - the events in a woman's body when an egg is released into the ovary and is either fertilized (and she becomes pregnant) or is lost during her period. Stages of this cycle include ovulation and menstruation (where the lining of the womb is shed in a period). The different stages are caused by different hormones in the body.

Metabolise/metabolism  – the process where substances are broken down so that thy can be excreted from the body. Metabolism is usually hepatic (in the liver) but can happen in other parts of the body. It usually involves different types of enzymes. Once metabolism happens the resulting substances are metabolites.

Midazolam – a type of medication that is given to someone who is having prolonged or repeated seizures, to stop status epilepticus from happening. Buccal means it is given into the mouth between the teeth and the cheek. Midazolam is a type of emergency medication.

Monotherapy  – when a person is taking a single drug on its own. See polytherapy.

MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) - a type of scan that uses strong magnetic fields to make up pictures of the inside of the body. MRIs are often done to help diagnose epilepsy because some people have a physical cause in their brain for the seizures starting (symptomatic epilepsy).

Myoclonic seizure – a type of generalised seizure where just part of the body (for example, a leg or arm) suddenly jerks (myo = muscle, clonic = jerk). Myoclonic jerks often happen in clusters (several happening in a row) and often early in the morning.