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10 Medical Terms That Aren't as Raunchy as They Sound

Angina

Yep, that’s pronounced exactly like you think it is. But before you start making assumptions, angina is really just a fancy word for chest pain that is caused by reduced blood flow to the heart. 

Crapulence

Despite its lovely name, this word actually has nothing to do with crap at all. Crapulence is a sickness that occurs from excessive eating or drinking. 

Piloerection

The hair on your skin certainly has no problem getting it up. Ever heard of your hair “standing on end”? Well, that’s due to the tiny pilorum muscles that elevate your hair follicles due to a reflex triggered by cold, shock, or fright—AKA, piloerection. 

Mastication

Much less exciting than it sounds, mastication simply means to grind, crush, and chew food with your teeth in preparation for swallowing. 

Uvula

This is a body part, but probably not the one you’re thinking of. Your uvula is that strange dangly thing that hangs in the back of your mouth above the throat. Scientists have long debated its true function, but it remains somewhat of a mystery. Some theories argue that it's used for lubricating the throat with saliva, triggering the gag reflex, and helping with speech. 

Coccyx

Yet another less-than-risque body part that we all have, your coccyx is the bony structure at the bottom of your spine—you probably know it better as your tail bone. 

Vagitus

If you’ve got a crying infant at home, your baby has a bad case of vagitis—an oddly named term for infantile crying. 

Formication

This may look and sound like the word for the horizontal mambo, but one letter can make a huge difference. Formication is the medical term for the sensation that small insects are crawling all over your skin. 

Invagination

Apparently scientists ran out of original ways to name biological processes. Invagination is a term that refers to the action or process of something being turned inside out or folded back on itself to form a cavity or pouch. On second thought, maybe scientists are cleverer than we thought. 

Cochlea

Also a part of the human anatomy, the cochlea is part of the inner ear that produces nerve impulses in response to sound vibrations.